West Chester, Pa. – The Girls Tier I 16U slate of games officially kicked off at the Chipotle-USA Hockey National Championships on Thursday morning, and Minnesota Elite Vegas got off to the start they wanted. The top seed in the tournament defeated Team Colorado, 7-1.
“We played great and came out with a ton of energy,” said Minnesota head coach Meaghan Pezon said. “I loved our puck movement and puck possession. We did a good job of getting pucks to the net and bodies to the net, and it made us pretty successful.
The first few minutes of the game were scoreless until Katelyn Roberts was able to break through for Minnesota. A puck squirted to the front of the net where the forward was able to tuck it past Team Colorado goaltender Payton Sutherland to make it 1-0.
The score remained that way after one period, but Minnesota increased their lead less than a minute into the second period. Sloane Matthews tallied her first goal of the tournament with Emma Peschel and Alejandra Franco picking up assists.
Minnesota almost added to their lead with a power play opportunity midway through the frame, but Sutherland came up with two huge saves to keep it 2-0.
Team Colorado got a chance in the second on a 2-on-1, but Sedona Blair, who split time in net with Hailey Hansen, came up with a big glove save to keep the Minnesota lead at 2-0.
Sami Bowlby would increase the Minnesota lead to 3-0 with a goal through the five hole with 3:17 to go in the second.
Two more goals were scored by Minnesota in the third by Roberts and Berit Lindborg before Team Colorado broke through on a Seneca Urban goal with 6:31 to go in the third. Minnesota responded shortly after when Annika Pulaski found the back of the net, and the seventh and final goal came off the stick of Danielle Brunette with just under a minute and a half remaining.
Minnesota will take on the Glimour Gladiators on Friday while Team Colorado’s second opponent will be RYA at Selects Academy.
Philadelphia Jr. Flyers 3, Mid-Fairfield CT Stars 2: Taya Balfour scored a goal and added an assist for Philadelphia. Samantha Stead and Thalia Delia also scored for the Jr. Flyers. Angelica Megdanis and Antonina Dinges netted goals for Mid-Fairfield. Sarah Dobrzynski made 18 saves in the win.
RYA at Selects Academy 4, Gilmour Gladiators 1: Isabella Vasseur scored twice for RYA, while Isabelle Krause and Angelina Digirolamo also scored in the victory. Molly Binsky netted the tally for Gilmour.
East Coast Wizards 11, Chicago Young Americans 0: Emerson O'Leary recorded a hat trick and added two assists in the East Coast victory. Avery McInerny also netted a hat trick and had an assist as well. Mia Langlois had a multi-goal and four point effort, while Jackson Kinsler, Julia Simon and Samantha Taber also scored. Elizabeth Sullivan made 16 saves in the shutout effort.
Detroit Little Caesars 5, Anaheim Lady Ducks 2: Elyssa Biederman scored twice and added an assist for Little Caesars. Ella Blackmore, Casey Borgiel and Cassandra Hall also added markers. Mia Catalano and Cassandra Johnson scored for Anaheim, with Catalano assisting on Johnson's goal.
Shattuck St. Mary's 7, Team Wisconsin 2: Lauren Glaser, Alexandra Lalonde and Louise Gray each scored twice for Shattuck. Lalonde tacked on three additional assists for a five-point effort. Sage Smith also scored for Shattuck. McKayla Zilisch and Kendall Sundby scored for Team Wisconsin.
Florida Alliance 7, Pittsburgh Pens Elite 1: Alexis Fitzsimmons scored five goals in the Alliance victory. Jordan Ray scored twice for Florida, while Hannah Fetterolf scored the lone goal for the Pens.
Chicago Mission 3, NJ Titans 0: Three second period goals helped propel the Mission to a shutout victory. Margot Norehead, Kate Pura and Lindsey Smolen were the goal scorers, while Chloe Baker stopped everything that came her way.