Why did the GWLWHL hockey player cross the rink? To get to the other side, of course! But all jokes aside, the GWLWHL playoffs have begun and with another extreme cold weather warning happening outdoors, thousands upon thousands of fans crowded the stands inside the rink to warm up and cheer their favourite team on... well, a few fans anyways (and a new furry friend)!
First up was fourth place Team Purple versus fifth place Team Green. These two teams are no strangers as they matched up the week before, ending in a win for Purple. Naturally, this meant that Team Green would want revenge, especially now that playoff hockey has begun and we're all a little more crazy. Purple got the first goal of the game late in the first period after many shot attempts from both teams. While things were looking fairly good for Purple, Team Green really let loose in the second period with three goals from three different star players. The first goal came courtesy of a loose puck around the net which was easy pickings for Captain Stacey. Not long after, Sniper 3.0 - Ginette Lafreniere, scored a stupendous goal, igniting her team's bench. Following that, Rhonda Sandberg stunned Team Purple by ripping the puck past the goalie to keep her team ahead. After an exciting game, Green claimed the win 4-2 and will face juicy Team Orange on Friday, February 15th.
The second and final game of the night was between Team Red and Team Yellow. These two teams have faced off several times over the regular season with Red winning all matches. Team Yellow was hoping to make Red forget they ever won any of those games and were pumped up to get the game started. Coming off a tie last week, Team Red was set to win this time and spent much of the first period in Yellow's end. Almost halfway into the first, Amy Bertrand scored the game's first goal for Red, causing screams of joy to ring out from the bench. After scoring two more goals in the second period, both teams were silent in the third and the game ended with a 3-0 win for Red. Phenomenal Yellow goaltender, Nat, faced an amazing 37 shots while astonishing Red goaltender, Nancy, got her first shut out of the playoffs. Red will now face Blue for what will surely be a fun game on Friday, February 15th.
Team Yellow and Team Purple won't play next until February 22nd and will find out their opponents on the 15th.
Be sure to come out to the Winter Club every Friday to cheer on the teams as they advance through the playoffs. Bring hot popcorn, noise makers (cowbells?!), funny signs, and warm drinks, all the while screaming continuously at the top of your lungs in support of all the teams!
Week 16 and the final regular season games are here!
With points up for grabs, Team Red was looking to squeeze Team Orange in the first game of the night. A very exciting game ensued, with Orange getting the elusive first goal. But this didn't hinder the Red team who came back to score two more in the second period, leading the game 2-1 after two. Team Orange, still wanting to get a full two points and not letting up, scored two in the third, putting the Red team down by one. Red was determined to tie up the game, and they did just that when Anna McKinnon netted one with only 12 seconds left. Red's fate was not quite sealed as they had to wait on the results of game two to see where they would stand for the playoffs.
Team Blue versus Team Yellow was up next and it was anyone's guess as to who would be victorious. Blue was on a mission to claim second place overall but it was the Yellow team who scored first in the game. Blue came out hard in the second period, scoring their first only a minute in, then another near the end of the period, getting up 2-1. The Yellow team tried to tie it up but it was too late as Blue won the match and advanced to second place overall.
The final game was between Team Green and Team Purple with both teams fighting for fourth and fifth place. Purple got on the board first, but it was only 50 seconds later that Green tied it up. The second period was a different story as Purple scored twice to be up 3-1. The highlight of the evening came late in the third period when Purple's Lori "The Wall" Frain let down her wall and scored her first goal of the season in spectacular fashion.
Now that the regular season is officially complete, the standings are as follows:
The first playoff game will be on Friday, February 8th at 6:30pm between Purple and Green, followed by a second game at 7:45pm between Red and Yellow. Team Orange and Team Blue won't play until February 15th and won't know their opponent until the games on the 8th are played. Good luck to all teams!
On a very chilly Friday night in Winnipeg (which was possibly colder than Antarctica?!), week 15 in the GWLWHL was set to go - and it started off with a bang!
Team Orange battled Team Green in the first game of the evening and the Green Machines were looking to get their first win against their juicy nemesis. Not wasting any time getting on the board, it was Green's Marilee Boileau who skated across the ice with the puck early in the game, through the Orange defense, and shot the puck into the back of the net. But the victory was short lived as not long after, Team Orange scored to tie up the game after one. The second period saw three goals - all from an energetic Green team, including two from Captain Stacey. Now behind by three goals, the Orange team knew they had to keep pushing hard to stay in the game. After two penalty calls against them for "too many men on the ice" and "misconduct", they shook it off and scored two late in the third. But it was Green's night as they got the win 4-3 and are holding down fourth place in the standings.
Team Purple versus Team Yellow was next on the menu and it was quite the interesting game. Team Yellow opened up the scoring, getting two goals early on in the first period. Purple responded with one late in the first, putting them behind by only one goal. The second period of the game saw two Yellow goals be called back due to some confusion on the ice. With the Yellow team reeling from the calls, Team Purple took advantage and scored two, putting them up 3-2. After gathering themselves on the bench between periods, the Yellow team were hoping to at least tie the game... and their wish came true. Yellow's Ashley Verot scored the game-tying goal, giving each team one point - not enough to budge either team's place in the regular season standings.
Team Blue played against Team Red to end the frozen evening. Before the game, Team Red was overheard chanting, "when the captains are away, the Red team will play!"... and that they did! Blue got on the scoreboard first, but not long after, Red tied it up. Both teams tried hard to score more fancy goals but it was either the great defense or the stellar goaltending that kept the score so low. Team Red scored near the end of the second period and did what they could to stop Blue from tying things up. With no goals in the third period, the Red team managed a win, passing Blue for second place in the standings.
Join us on Friday for the last regular season GWLWHL game. It's sure to be a dandy!
"Every day is a great day for hockey" - Mario Lemieux. Nice one, Mario. But what you don't know is that the GWLWHL only plays on Fridays...and on Fridays, the place to be is the Winnipeg Winter Club.
The night began with Team Blue against Team Purple. At puck drop, the sassiness ensued and some good-natured jabs were thrown between the teams throughout the game. Blue opened up the scoring near the end of the first period when Trudy Mulder let one rip past the goaltender that went bar down and in. Scoring another three goals, it was now 4-0 for Blue after two. Purple was trying to turn up the heat and score, when Joanna Boult shot the puck hard past the goaltender and almost through the netting to get Purple on the board. But the Blue team managed to shut down Purple for the rest of the game, ending in a 4-1 Blue win.
The second game was between Team Red and Team Orange. What some may describe as an almost mirror-image of Game 1, the Orange team opened the scoring halfway through the first period and after two, it was 4-0 for Orange. With many chances to score, the Red team fought hard to get past Orange players who always seemed to be in the way. Red's Xin Wang put her team on the board late in the third period but it wasn't enough to beat Team Orange. No strangers to the scoresheet, Orange players Hayleigh Gushuliak, Rei Watanabe, Alana Mendes, and Captain Misty all scored for their team. Orange is now in top spot in the regular season standings, ahead of Team Blue by 5 points.
Roll the highlight reel for the final game of the night between Team Yellow and Team Green! It was a lemony first period after Yellow scored early on, but the "limes" weren't soured at all. After a quick break between periods to strategize, Green was determined to get fizzy like a bottle of lemon-lime 7up, which is just what they did. Chrisanne Beisick tied it up when she scored early in the second period, which opened up the scoring for Green as they got another two goals before the period was over. Not satisfied with just one goal though, Chrisanne (now known permanently as Sniper 2.0) scored another beauty 30 seconds into the third. Enter Sniper 3.0, Ginette Lafreniere, who scored two spectacular goals only three minutes apart. Somebody find a fire hydrant and put this girl out - she is RED HOT! Winning 7-1, Team Green has now passed Purple for fourth place in the standings.
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It was primary versus secondary (and tertiary!) colours for week 13 of the GWLWHL!
We all know that blue + yellow = green, but did you know that blue + green = teal? For game 1 of the night, it was a vibrant mix of aqua on the ice as a full team Blue faced off against a 9-player Green team. It didn't take long for Blue to strike first, scoring in the first period to be up 1-0 after one. The second period was a hard battle between the teams with chances for both to score but it wasn't until early in the third period when the puck crossed the goal line - this time in team Green's favour. However, the celebration was short-lived when Becky Chervinski scored her second of the night to help her team win 2-1.
Magenta was the colour of choice for game 2 - Red versus Purple. Fun fact: Magenta is not found in the visible spectrum of light (thanks, Wikipedia), but everyone saw when Anna McKinnon scored late in the first period for Team Red. Throughout the rest of the game, the Purple team tried to even the score but goaltender Nancy and the Red defense wouldn't let the puck go in the net. The game ended with Red winning 1-0 and Purple still solid at fourth place in the standings.
Game 3 was a citrus battle between Yellow and Orange, a combination forming an amber-type of colour. According to many sources, amber is a colour symbolizing energy and is also used in traffic lights and turn signals. The Orange team seemed to channel this amber energy to turn their traffic light from amber to GREEN as they stepped on the gas and went full speed into the first period of the game, scoring two goals quickly - one of which was scored by superstar Rei Watanabe who's been quietly adding up the points this season. Team Yellow also got on the board in the first, but Orange never let up, scoring another four goals total in the second and third periods, winning the game 6-1.
Now only three games left in the regular season, things are quickly heating up between the teams before playoffs begin. Next week starts off with Team Blue and Team Purple, followed by Team Red against Team Orange, and ending with Team Yellow versus Team Green.
Standings - Playoff Season