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North Stars Win National Title in Defensive Struggle

By Carl Chimenti, 04/10/17, 5:45PM MDT


Anchorage wins Girls Tier II 16U national championship game with defense and goaltending

TROY, Mich. -- Allison Green and Annisa Boots had a goal and an assist each to carry the Anchorage North Stars to a 3-1 win over the Vermont Shamrocks in the USA Hockey Girls Tier II 16U National Championship game at the Troy Sports Center in Troy, Michigan.

It was a defensive battle and a goaltending dual that had a big crowd in attendance on the edge of their seats throughout the morning.

It was the second meeting in the national tournament between the two teams. Vermont blanked Anchorage 1-0 in the first game of the round robin.

“We knew from playing Vermont earlier, that they were an exceptional team and we caught that from our first meeting during the round robin,” said head coach Rick Trupp. “We were real excited coming into the game, a first for our program and we were hoping for a strong rematch from our team and the girls prevailed.”

After a scoreless first period in which Vermont outshot the North Stars 8-4, things heated up in the second frame as Anchorage scored three times.

Boots opened the scoring at the 4:07 mark with a power-play goal. Green sent a perfect pass to Boots in the slot and she made no mistake.

Four minutes later, it was Green’s turn to light the lamp with an even-strength goal that was unassisted.

“My amazing teammate Alyssa Monrean passed me the puck and I went down the boards and cut through the middle, I shot it and it went in.”

The only controversy on the goal was whether an assist should have been given to Monrean. It certainly looked like a pass that set up the goal to put the North Stars in the lead 2-0.

At 12:57, the North Stars took a commanding 3-0 lead on a goal from Tristin Stetson with Boots drawing the only assist. “Boots was leading the way down the ice,” said Stetson, as she explained how the goal went down. “She shot the puck on net and the rebound came right to me and all I had to do was fire the shot in the net.”

The North Stars went into defensive mode for the third period and held off any thought that Vermont had about making a comeback.

The Shamrocks finally hit pay dirt with a goal from Abigail Gleason in the final minute of the game, but it was too little too late. Piper Desorcie got credit for the lone assist.

Anchorage goaltender Gabrielle Gibson was solid in net, stopping 15 of 16 shots.

“Every one of my teammates played well. We came in with a bunch of confidence,” said Gibson in front of a noisy dressing room after the game. “We lost previously to them but we came back hard and got the win.”

Gibson was amazing all season as was Mckinley Huff. Both goaltenders took turns playing this season and put their team on their backs, carrying them to a national title for the first time.

Gibson felt more at ease knowing what to expect from the Shamrocks after playing them earlier in the tournament. “We knew how they played and that helped out a lot,” said Gibson. Their rotation of their goalies in each game did not really mess up our game at all.”

Vermont’s assistant coach Derek Bartlett thought the Shamrocks got off to a good start in the game. “The first ten minutes of the game our team was hitting their stride,” Bartlett said. “Then we ran into some penalty trouble, which we had not done in the tournament. The penalties then affected our flow and it was kind of hard to rebound from that.”

Shamrocks Head Coach Mark Gleason had high praise for his girls.

“They played with all their hearts today,” said Gleason. “A bounce here and a bounce there, they put the puck in the net and when we put the puck on net their goalie came up big. I’m proud of our girls that put everything they had on the ice.”   

Story from Red Line Editorial, Inc.

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2017 USA Hockey National Championship Sites

Division Location Host Dates
Youth Tier I (14U) Scottsdale, Arizona Arizona Amateur Hockey April 6-10, 2017
Youth Tier I (15-year-olds only) Scottsdale, Arizona Arizona Amateur Hockey April 6-10, 2017
Youth Tier I (16U, 18U) Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania Pittsburgh Penguins Elite April 6-10, 2017
Girls Tier I Rochester/Macomb, Michigan HoneyBaked Hockey Club April 6-10, 2017
Women's A, B, C Rochester/Macomb, Michigan HoneyBaked Hockey Club April 6-9, 2017
High School Cleveland, Ohio Cleveland Suburban Hockey March 22-26, 2017
Girls Tier II Troy, Michigan Troy Youth Hockey Association April 6-10, 2017
Youth Tier II (14U) Coral Springs, Florida Florida Panthers Ice Den April 6-10, 2017
Youth Tier II (16U) Frisco, Texas Texas Amateur Hockey April 6-10, 2017
Youth Tier II (18U) Lansing, Michigan Lansing Hockey Club April 6-10, 2017
Sled San Jose, California Sharks Ice April 6-9, 2017
Adult Rec Men's Wesley Chapel, Florida Florida Hospital Center Ice April 20-23, 2017
Adult Rec Women's Ellenton, Florida Ellenton Ice and Sports Complex April 27-30, 2017