By, Susie Lai & Ellie Milewski
Just like that, championship week of the inaugural season of Women’s Ball Hockey NYC is here.
Wow. What a truly wonderful ride it has been this summer: from the excitement in the air on that first day of games, to our last game day which consisted of the most competitive play yet and was capped off by the Widows coming back from being down 4-1 to clinch the final win of the regular season.
It’s safe to say this season has been a smashing success, and Championship Saturday is looking to be the most exciting day yet.
In preparation for the big day, lets look back at the season and what it has meant to our 3 founding teams:
The Yettis are a team of tenacity and resilience. They have embodied the growth mindset and it shows: each week this team shows up stronger. Their commitment to the game and to developing their individual play as well as their team chemistry makes them the dark horse in the playoffs, and they could easily take it all. During the last day of the regular season both Avery and Veronica killed it on defense, and the return of Dana Lerner gave the Yetti’s a goal scoring boost. The Yetti’s are here to play, and with Captain Courtney making her return from Europe for the championship, the other teams need to keep their eyes on their sticks and heads in the game or else they’re gonna get some serious frostbite.
Nimbus 2000 lived up to their name all season, establishing themselves as the speediest team. They’ve utilised this skill, making smart, quick plays. They’re also a team that has really bought into the philosophy and style of play set forth by their two Captains. Even though she’s in the middle of a move, Captain Charlotte doen’t let a long drive stop her from leading her team week after week. Captain Ryann will make her triumphant return after WINNING A GOLD MEDAL with the USA Women’s Masters Team. It goes without saying that she will be an offensive weapon for her team. Former U20 National USA Ball Hockey player and new Nimbus team member, Jenna Shaw, made her presence known last week and the entire team made slick plays in the offensive, defensive, and neutral zones. This has been a dangerous team all season, and they’re sure to bring it on Championship Saturday.
The Black Widows have been building on a solid foundation all season which was set forth by Captain LJ and her incredible leadership. Whether stepping in on offense, leading the way on defense, setting lines and strategy, or pumping up her players, Captain LJ truly does it all. The Widows play not only with each other, but FOR each other, which is displayed by their motto: Do it for The Widows. Marcella, has been a goal scoring phenom, and with Margot back on the court and Emily and Nikki continuing to lock it down on D, this team is solid front and back. They’ve earned a bye and will therefore be proceeding straight to the Championship game where they aim to strike.
The Widows have found themselves down early many games this season only too come back in the second half and take the win. But, with a Play-in bye they risk coming into the Final cold and losing it all to the winner of 2v3. They will need to put in a full 36 minutes to give themselves a shot, something they haven't done all season.
The Liberty Cup is about to be raised for the first time in history. But although the season is coming to an end, this is only the beginning. Women’s Ball Hockey is ready to take NYC by storm.