The Rookie scored the game-winning goal in overtime with 90 seconds remaining in the extra frame to lift the home team in front of a sellout record crowd.
Montreal won their second consecutive game this week after beating Ottawa 2-1 in overtime at Bell Place in Laval thanks to Laura Stacey, Maureen Murphy, and an amazing performance in net from Anne Renee Desbiens who made 43 saves in another game where the home got outshot almost at a 2-1 margin.
” Our goalies are good”, head coach Kori Cheverie told me when I asked about being outshot for the third straight game. “We don’t want to be giving that many shots that many games in a row and we are focusing on what we can do to limit the grade A chances in the slot but right now I am pretty proud of our group and we continue to find a way even when things are hard.”
After scoring the game-winner on Wednesday in Minnesota Tereza Vanisova was held out of practice on Friday and was not in the lineup being replaced with Catherine Dubois who signed another 10-day contract with the club prior to puck drop and played on the first line with Marie Phillipe Poulin and Murphy.
” She has been working tirelessly”, Cheverie responded when I asked about Murphy’s performance. ” She is such a good young player and she has been put in tricky situations facing the other team’s first line and we are really proud of her.”
Stacey opened the scoring 14 minutes into the first period where we saw a lot of good chances at both ends as she was able to get the puck behind the net and pulled a wrap-around goal beating Emerance Mashmeyer and the roar of 8646 fans in attendance which was a new record for a women’s hockey game in Canada could be felt all the up in the press box.
” We had players blocking shots and our goalie worked her butt off to make those saves and we killed a lot of penalties and the amount of work our players put in it wouldn’t be right to say we didn’t deserve to win that game because we put in a lot of effort.”
29 seconds into the second period Stacey was awarded a penalty shot when she was tripped on a breakaway running into Maschmeyer and the Ottawa goaltender was down for a bit before being able to deny Stacey her second goal of the game to keep the score at 1-0.
” Our locker room is always good and we have a great group and the leadership has been doing such a good job and we are happy where we are right now but we are not satisfied and there is a long season ahead.”
Six minutes into the final frame Montreal got penalized when Kati Tabin was called for hooking and 35 seconds later the visitors equalized on the powerplay when Haley Scamurra one-timed a pass from Brianne Jenner into the back of the net.
” I don’t think you can win a championship right now but you can lose one in the sense if you fall too far behind and the message continues to be to always find a way despite the adversity and the circumstances and I think we are in a good spot.”
With the score tied at 1-1, the game went into overtime, and with 1:30 left in the extra period, there was a mad scramble in front of the net which ended up with Murphy picking up the loose puck and blasting it into the back of the net. After the goal was scored Ottawa head coach Carla Mcleoad asked the refs to review the goal for goaltender interference.
” I think we were better prepared and it’s about what we know but what we learn and I wanted to make sure that if the goal came back we were ready so I was telling the players to reset and be ready to go back out.”
After what seemed like an eternity the goal was given and once again the crowd erupted to celebrate the victory.
” Honestly when we were going up the ice I was screaming for the puck.”, Murphy said post-game. ” There was no way Kati heard me and it was kinda dumb luck that it popped to me in the slot.”
I asked Desbiens if she is the type of goalie who likes to have a lot of shots in a game and she confirmed to me that both she and Elaine Chuli like it.
” I think both Chuli and I love it”, she responded. ” As a goalie, it’s so much easier, you feel the puck a lot and you feel better about yourself and you have so many opportunities to work on things but it is not something we can rely on every game but it’s nice that we have that and we are confident that our team will get better.”
I had a chance to ask Murphy what was going through her mind when her goal was being reviewed but she responded by saying that she was ready to back on the ice if the call went the other way.
” Pretty stressed because we don’t have a good track record with video reviews in overtime and Kori said it best that if it is overturned we go back to work and I am very grateful.”
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