In comparison to games past, this was a total offensive explosion.
Sadie Ried stopped 35 shots as the PMW Steelers blanked the Edmonton Pandas 3-0 in Alberta Female Hockey League Midget AAA action at the Servus Sports Centre on Saturday afternoon.
It was the club’s first win of 2017 and the first victory since a 2-0 result on Dec. 2. In that span of seven games the team scored just seven goals.
“These girls have been fighting hard to get a win,” Steelers’ head coach, Eric Morrissette, said.
“This is a big one for us today. Now we just have to get ready for the next one.”
“It’s so nice to win again,” forward Madison Cole added.
“We were stuck in a rut and now that we’ve pulled out that win it’s going to go up from here. We knew it was going to come. It has taken a lot of work to get us here.”
As rough as the unlucky seven-game skid has been, there’s no dissension or off-the-ice nonsense surrounding the club. Just a sense of hard work and friendship.
“They’re an amazing group of girls and they are a tight bunch,” Morrissette said.
“We’ve been fighting to get some offence and we got a little bit today. Ultimately, we have to keep going.”
“It’s been great and we’re super tight,” Jenna Plamondon said. “There’s no drama and we all get along really (well). (We’re) just like a family.”
Prior to Saturday’s win, the club, in its last five games, lost four of them by the exact 3-1 scoreline.
The other loss was a 2-1 defeat last weekend.
The midget crew scored 40 goals in 24 games this season.
“There’s enough skill to score the goals but the biggest thing with our team is we need to score by committee,” Morrissette said.
“We need our defence to engage and we have to make sure our forwards are taking the puck to the net. Ultimately, it’s about manufacturing offence and not looking for something pretty.”
The five-foot-seven forward says the team isn’t looking to score pretty goals. There’s no room for finesse when it’s not there in abundance.
“A lot of (our goals) are rebounds and we’ve been working a lot on (driving the net) and that’s a big aspect of it,” Plamondon said.
With the exception of the first-place St. Albert Slash who are averaging near four goals a game, every team in the league is netting less than three goals a game. The issue isn’t Lloyd specific.
“The difference with St. Albert is that they have some girls they key on with their offence,” Morrissette said.
“They get them the puck and they can finish. It’s not about the lack of opportunities it’s about finishing when you have those opportunities.”