Women’s hockey stays perfect

Currently undefeated in the regular season, the Wilfrid Laurier Golden Hawks women’s hockey team shows no sign of slowing down. A hard fought 2-1 victory over the Brock Badgers on Sunday afternoon moved the reigning Ontario University Athletics (OUA) champions to 6-0 this season.

“We were expecting a really tough game,” said Laurier head coach Rick Osborne. “I was a little concerned with us getting our first home stand of the year so I was worried about the energy level.”

The Hawks have spent their first five games of the season on the road. With the exception of Saturday’s game at Wilfrid Laurier University’s Brantford campus — a 4-1 Laurier win over the Guelph Gryphons — Sunday’s game was essentially the Hawks’ home opener. “It sucked,” laughed Liz Knox, the

Hawks’ starting goalie for Sunday’s game.
Knox played a phenomenal game in net, blocking 26 out of 27 shots and playing a major role in helping the team kill numerous penalties.

“Certainly when it comes to penalty killing, she’s the very best penalty killer we have,” Osborne said. “If they can make three stick to tape passes, they still have to get past Knox.”

Knox is currently a fifth-year at WLU and has been the top goalie in the OUA for the past three years. She was also awarded the Canadian Interuniversity Sports (CIS) player of the year last season. “She just makes us play confidently in front of her,” added Osborne.

Sunday’s game also saw numerous penalties on both sides: Laurier managing to scoop a total of 20 penalty minutes while the Badgers only received 16.

“We like to be a real assertive team,” Osborne noted. “When we cross from assertive to aggressive you just have to be careful and adjust to whoever is refereeing.”

That being said, a roughing penalty in the second period caused Brock’s Maja Samborski to score a power play goal and take the Hawks’ lead away. A dangerous 1-1 score was then dragged into the third period.
Rookie Laura Brooker managed to close the deal for the Hawks early in the third period after the lines were slightly shaken up.

“We tried to regroup and tried to focus on using our speed as much as we can,” commented Osborne. “Brooker just had jets and it was strictly speed skill that got that winning goal.”

Brooker also received the game puck and the offensive player of the game.
Sunday’s win keeps the Hawks at the top of the OUA standings in regular season and ranked second in nation. Next week, the purple and gold travel to Windsor on Saturday and face the Western Mustangs at home on Halloween.