Toronto Furies vs Les Canadiennes de Montreal 1-7
Amanda Makela made her second CWHL start against the team that traded her this offseason.
Emily Fulton, Jess Vella and Jenna Dingeldein started for the Furies, with Shannon Moulson and Katie Gaskin on defence. According to the game sheet, the Furies have finally named a captain and alternates for the season. Fulton has the C - she’s the last one standing from last season’s As - and Moulson and rookie Alessandra Bianchi are the As.
Jessica O’Grady, Carlee Campbell and Ella Stewart were the scratches. There was a rumour that Erin Ambrose, recently cut from the Canadian National Team centralization, was also in the building, although she didn’t dress for the game.
With only five defenders, Brooke Beazer ended up moving back, playing in a pairing with Michelle Saunders. Beazer played defence for the Clarkson Golden Knights her junior year, which was about a decade ago.
Les Canadiennes got on the board first, Ann-Sophie Bettez taking advantage of the only power play in the period (slashing call on Aramburu) to get one past Makela just over five and half minutes in.
Jessica Platt finished off the period by scoring her first CWHL goal (and first CWHL point) with help from Hayley Williams and Carolyne Prévost, giving her team a ray of hope. The Furies ended the period down 3-1 which was a bit of a miracle, considering the shots were 12-4. The math’s sort of pretty though.
Toronto got some chances early in the period but were foiled by the Montréal net coming off its moorings. The tide turned back towards the Canadiennes halfway through the period when Emmanuelle Blais scored.
As all Torontonians know, 4-1 is a dangerous score, although I suspect the danger this time is in being down by three.. The Furies got more pucks on net this period, but were still outshot 16-10.
The third became a physical affair. Hayley Williams and Karell Emard started things off just over six minutes into the period with coincidentals for roughing. Then, with 7:12 left in the game, Saunders decided it would be a good idea to punch Noémie Marin in the face (interestingly this is on the gamesheet as “contact with the head”). She got five and a game. Emard and Dingeldein got mixed up in the aftermath and were both called for unsportsmanlike conduct. Brittany Zuback compounded the Furies woes during that penalty kill, earning the second five and a game for a spear.
Five minute majors are pretty rare in the CWHL and two in a game so close together spells nothing but trouble. Sure enough, Montréal scored three times on the five on three, kicked off by Marin. Punching her in the face clearly didn’t solve anything.
I wasn’t at the game, but I don’t really care what started it—Toronto’s got to get their act together if they have any hope of beating the defending Clarkson Cup champions tomorrow.
3 Cathy Chartrand, Les Canadiennes de Montréal (2A)
2 Emmanuelle Blais, Les Canadiennes de Montréal (1G, 1A)
1 Kim Deschênes, Les Canadiennes de Montréal (2G, 2A)
Markham Thunder vs Boston Blades 2-1 (SO)
Both teams came into the game on a nine-game losing streak. Boston had one point so far this season to Markham’s nine, so there was still a definite underdog.
Liz Knox got the start in goal, countered by Lauren Dahm for Boston. Markham were low on players yet again (along with Kosta, McParland and Woloschuk from last weekend, McIntosh was also out) so Taylor Woods moved to defence for the game.
The first period was very back and forth, with a slight edge to the Thunder. The teams seemed pretty evenly matched for speed, but the Thunder had the upper hand in terms of skill and experience — Boston has 13 rookies on its squad this season.
The Thunder had the lone power play of the period. They kept things in the offensive zone and got a lot of shots in Dahm’s vicinity but she stopped everything she saw.
The second period was much more tilted in Markham’s favour — despite both teams having two power plays apiece, the Thunder outshot the Blades 17-5. Nothing went in and they were scoreless after two.
As the game crept on it began to look like a first-goal-wins-it scenario. Despite completely squandering a 30-second skater advantage to start the period, Boston seemed to have their equilibrium back.
The Thunder kept getting chances on Dahm. Unfortunately the net also kept coming off its pegs. Still, Jamie Lee Rattray eventually managed to whistle one up and over the goaltender to make it 1-0.
.@ratt26 finally scores on Dahm. Rattray has been a leader on her team scoring her 9th of the season. @seedy10 with her first point of her CWHL career. @ThunderCWHL lead 1-0 over the Blades #CWHL pic.twitter.com/1wQj1gFLf6— Women's Sports Highlights (@WSportHilites) December 10, 2017
The Blades protested goaltender interference as there was traffic in front and Dahm lost her stick, but it looked to be as much the fault of her own teammates as that of the Thunder. Ellie Seedhouse got her first point of the season with the assist.
The goal seemed to give the Blades some extra energy for the second half of the period, but their enthusiasm outstripped the speed of the puck, and a number of rushes died offside.
The overtime period was more back and forth hockey. Kate Leary hit the post for the Blades and Jamie Lee Rattray just missed the net a couple of times. Karolina Urban went off for interference two minutes in, but the Thunder managed to disrupt the Boston power play a number of times.
The shooters went as follows:
Kate Leary, Boston Blades: stopped
Jame Lee Rattray, Markham Thunder: stopped
Meghan Grieves: stopped
Kristen Barbara: goal
Megan Myers: stopped
Markham comes away with a win, Boston gets a point, and everyone will be back at it tomorrow afternoon.
I touched base with Markham GM Chelsea Purcell last weekend and she tells me that Nicole Kosta sustained an “upper body injury” but is back practicing with the team. Hopefully she’ll make it into a game soon.
It’s a rare thing when the home team has fewer players than the road team but there were 19 Blades skaters to the Thunder’s 15. This team needs bodies - I keep wondering if a trade with Toronto for draft picks might be coming.
While Jamie Lee Rattray is very much carrying the team scoring (she has 14 points in 14 games, Kristen Richards is in second place with 6 points), Karolina Urban and Taylor Woods both had some excellent chances.
Woods also seemed to have a pretty good game on defence. If Woloschuk is out for a while, she’s at least a viable option.
3 Lindsay Grigg, Markham Thunder (no points but some great defense)
2 Lauren Dahm, Boston Blades (40 saves)
1 Kristen Barbara (shootout winner)
A previous version of this recap stated Ellie Seedhouse scored her first CWHL point. Although Seedhouse is listed as a rookie on the CWHL page, this is her third season with the Thunder (non-consecutive) and her ninth career point.