Shoot and score: hockey team qualifies for first championship
After eights years, the Bourne/Mashpee/Wareham/ORR girls' ice hockey team is making headway into the game—the team qualified for its first South Coast Conference (SCC) championships this year.
"Yes, this is the first year we've qualified," said the team's head coach, Kristyn Alexander, as players went racing by her at Tabor Academy's Travis Roy Ice Rink on Feb. 11.
"It's really exciting to make it to the SCC," said junior Old Rochester student Chelsea Peterson, of Rochester. "We've never been before."
"Yeah, usually we're the underdog," added fellow student Elsie Buckley, also of Rochester.
Peterson started playing ice hockey around the age of three. Buckley, like so many others in Rochester, got her start skating on cranberry bogs.
Fellow player Kaitlin Kelley, an Old Rochester student from Wareham, said she had a choice. "I was playing gymnastics, and my brother was doing ice hockey. I had to pick one, and I chose hockey." She's been playing ever since.
Head Coach Alexander has been with the team since it began; Old Rochester Regional High School players joined the team three years ago.
The teammates say the best part of being on the team is getting to meet people from other schools. "We don't all go to the same school," Peterson explained, "so it's really nice to meet people from other schools and make new friends."
Players are capitalizing on a banner year; they also took home the Canal Cup earlier this year.
The playoff game is a traditional face-off between the Bourne/Mashpee/Wareham/ORR teams and Sandwich's ice hockey teams. Both teams are headquartered at Gallo Ice Arena in Bourne.
"The boys' rivalry has been going for awhile; the original Canal Cup started years ago," Alexander explained. "The girls' teams started playing four years ago. We won the first edition, then lost the next two, and now we've won again."
That's thanks to great plays in the net by the team's goalies, Alexander said. "A lot of the times they've kept us in the game."
The hockey team will play its next game against Scituate at Gallo Arena in Bourne, on Wednesday, February 14.