Photos and Story by Janet Schultz, NYHOL
The 2022-23 ice hockey regular season has come to a close and the Western New York Girls Ice Hockey Federation begins its playoffs and then the Championship. Another season that went quickly and gave us all a lot of enjoyment, some frustration but lots of good hockey!
Kenmore/Grand Island/Lockport secured the #1 seed in the League last week but it took some final games to finalize the other places. A reminder that the League is all nine teams and that St. Mary’s of Lancaster and Monsignor Martin are not in Section VI, thus two sets of standings and two Championship games.
Obviously, St. Marys will play Monsignor Martin in the Private School Championship scheduled for Monday, February 13 at 6 p.m. at Cornerstone Arena in Lockport. That will be followed by the Section VI Championship at 8 p.m. So how will that play out?
Let’s look at what happened this past week.
Monday night had LIDA facing Niagara County and NiCO coming out with a 3-2 victory. Natalee Lawrence had the game-winning goal, along with one additional and Abby Zimmerman had an unassisted goal. Mariela Mulready stopped 14 of 16 shots-on-goal. It was Sydney Radecki with both goals for LIDA and Carly Irzycki stopping 19 of 22.
Tuesday night it was KENGIL 6-5 and NiCo over HEWSH, 4-1.
Izzy Bourgeault dropped in KENGIL’s first three goals for a hattrick and added an assist later on. Madison Flory scored a short-handed goal and Isabella Jayme added another to the scoreboard. In goal Jordan Hofschneider stopped 13/18 SOG. For LIDA it was Radecki with two goals, one on the power play, Kowalow an unassited goal and a power play goal. Irzycki stopped 22/28.
Madison Mallone had a hattrick and the game-winner for NiCo in their victory over HEWSH. Sam Latinie scored the final goal and Kennedy Ruest stopped 29/30 for the win. Meghan Waszkielewicz scored for HEWSH, assisted by Liliann Drzazgowski. In goal and stopping 20/24 was Ella Buczynski.
Clarence/Amherst/SweetHome celebrated Senior Night on Wednesday, then lost to St. Mary’s 4-2. No goals were scored in the first period and then St. Mary’s got on the board at 4:46 of the second period with a shot by Rosslyn Miller, assisted by Danielle Cottrell. Miller came back with another one, unassisted and St. Mary’s took the lead for a few minutes. Then CASH stepped us scoring two goals, one by Jenny Wild and another by Isabella Zivis to tie the score as the second period ended. It also ended with a St. Mary’s penalty. It looked like an overtime was headed our way when Avery Szczesek scored on the powerplay with 3:52 left and then scored the empty netter ending it 4-2. Avery Hall made 30 of 32 shots and for CASH Kylie Paige stopped 24/27.
The final night of the regular season and the celebration of Williamsville and Monsignor Martin’s seniors found FFLOP and MMAA ending in a 2-2 tie and Williamsville victorious over CASH 5-3.
The Seniors scored for MMAA–first Isabella Fedele, unassisted and then Courtney Bonner, assisted by Prendergast (this was on the scoresheet but there is a question). In goal Senior Desiderio stopped 22/24 shots. For FFLOP it was Mya Dalton, assisted by Luci Bowen and Jocelyn Smaczniak, assisted by Avery McDonald. Rachael Fix stopped 23/25 sog. With no scoring in the first period, FFLOP scored with 2:52 left in the second to go up 1-0. MMAA scored 1:27 into the third period with an extra attacker to go to Overtime.
Over at Northtown Williamsville’s Allison Besancon had two goals, Alena Lombardo and Scarlet Canna each had a goal with Molly Martin scoring the game-winner. Anna Meyer stopped 16/19 for the W. For CASH it was Tessa Kwiatowski, Zivis and Sydney Spear scoring. Melissa MacLeod stopped 22/27.
Radecki (LIDA) hit the 30 goal mark in the regular season and is only the sixth player to do so in WNYGVIH Federation history. She did it in a 14 league games and with her 7 goals has 37 points. She sits in the first positon on the Scoring chart.
Riley Andzel is second with 26 goals and 10 assists for 36 points. She is followed by Madison Flory (32 pts), Isabelle Bourgeault (32 pts.) and Isabella Jayme (29 pts.)
Leading goaltenders in save percentage are: Samatha Horne (.973), Carolyn Bourgeault (.967) and Jordan Hofschneider (.917), Kennedy Ruest (.914) and Abrie Iannucci (.903).
Ella Buczynski has 11 wins, Bourgeault has 10 and Anna Meyer, 9. Bourgeault leads with 7 shutouts and she is followed by Buczynski with 5.
In the KENGIL vs LIDA game there were 11 goals, the most this season in one game; a hattrick, breakaways, the first powerplay goal scored by KENGIL (by LIDA’s Kowalow) and a short-handed goal.
So mark your calendars for Tuesday, February 7 as the Section VI Quarterfinals are played at Northtown Arena. At 4:30 p.m. it’s #7 CASH vs #2 NiCo; 6 p.m. #6 FFLOP vs #3 HEWSH and at 7:30 p.m. #5 LIDA vs #4 Williamsville.
Semi-finals will be played Thursday, February 9, at Northtown with Fourth place seed playing First place KENGIL and third seed playing second seed.
The Private School Championship will be played at 6 p.m. with #8 St. Mary’s of Lancaster facing off with #7 Monsignor Martin.
The Section VI Championship will be played at 8 p.m. Both games are at Cornerstone Arena in Lockport.
The Semi-Finals and Championship games will be broadcast by WNY Athletics; NYHOL’s Randy Schultz doing color commentating.
In other WNYGVIH news:
Williamsville’s Molly Braunscheidel has been accepted and will play hockey for Nichols High School next season. Braunscheidel is played both defense and forward this season as an eighth grader from Mill School.
Lara Beecher, a former player with Monsignor Martin (2019-20) was named to the Women’s Hockey Commissioner Association’s National Rookie of the Year Wait List. She plays for the University of Vermont.
Gabby DeMeo, formerly with FLOP (2016-17-18) hit the 100 century mark by playing 103 games with Nazareth College.
Former KGI Goaltender Ellie Simmons played in the 2023 FISU University Games in Lake Place as a goaltender for Team USA. They placed third. Ellie plays for the University of Vermont.
Here’s to a great Playoff!
(Editor’s Note: NYHOL is using Smug Mug to post all the photos taken by Janet during the season. These are available just to look at; but you can also purchase them. This is the first year we are using this and it’s a testing period to see how it works for clients and the photographer. So be sure to checkout the albums posted at https://janetschultz.smugmug.com and be sure to continue checking our website for stories at www.nyhockeyonline.com.)