Women’s hockey crushes Warriors

Well, that’s no way to repay a favour to your considerate neighbours.

Head coach Rick Osborne and his band of merciless Laurier lady hockey Hawks laid a beat down on the Waterloo Warriors, 6-0 on Saturday.

Hardly the treatment deserving of such an altruistic group of Warriors who, just one week earlier, had vanquished the Windsor Lancers who tarnished Laurier’s perfect record (they now stand at 8-1) with a 2-1 win on Oct. 29.

The Warriors would find no gratitude from the Hawks.

“That’s the same goalie who stopped 52 shots against Windsor,” said Osborne of Warriors’ keeper Martina Michaud. “On any given day, you can run into a hot goalie, so those first two quick goals were important.”

While the Hawks did fail to pay UW’s niceties forward, they were more than happy spreading the scoring wealth between themselves Saturday.

Andrea Shapero, the first Hawk to put one past Michaud, was just one of 10 girls to collect at least a point in Laurier’s drubbing.

“The team is very well-rounded,” said the first-year forward after collecting her second tally of the season. “It’s nice to see players who don’t usually get those goals get them tonight.”

A learned Ontario University Athletics (OUA) observer would be hard-pressed to pick just one of those out from this deep squad.

“We’re not going to have any fourth line checking-role players on this team,” said Osborne.

Six different players found the net in Laurier’s lopsided win.

Shapero, Caitlin Muirhead, Heather Fortuna, Brittany Crago, Abby Rainsberry, and Laura Brooker all added to their totals, with no player except Brooker – who has six goals on the year – claiming more than their third tally of the year.

Despite scoring the most goals of every team in the OUA with 32, the Hawks currently hold the absurd phenomenon of possessing no player in the top 10 in league scoring.

“I think we’ve got five or six who will eventually be at the top, but everybody will chip in,” said Osborne.

Making the Hawks even more formidable is the one area where a Golden Hawk does indeed reign queen – between the pipes.

Coming as absolutely no surprise, fifth-year goaltender and last year’s Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) player of the year Liz Knox has stood an imposing figure to start the year with an otherworldly 0.89 GAA and .961 save percentage.

“Full confidence in her,” said Shapero of the Team Canada vet. “When she’s back there, we’ve got nothing to worry about.”

Laurier strikes in engulfing waves, instead of flashes of sparse brilliance, like some star-laden teams are wont to do, making them so difficult to guard against. Opposing defenders have no idea who they’re supposed to focus on.

“Rolling four lines is nice,” said Shapero. “Everyone gets out there and pushes it for their own 40 seconds, and then we roll the next line.”

Often, those 40 seconds last an eternity for the opposition; even if they did just flash some courtesy towards those ungrateful Hawks.