By Josh Beneteau
They may be new to the league, but the Nipissing Lakers (5-8-1) already have the Ryerson Rams (5-9-0) women’s hockey team’s number.
After beating the Rams 1-0 in Nipissing in October, the Lakers came to the Mattamy Athletic Centre and beat Ryerson 5-1 Saturday night. Although the Rams outshot the Lakers 29-23, Nipissing carried the play for most of the game and appeared to wear down the Rams with their aggressive play.
“It was just a matter of another team outplaying us,” assistant captain Melissa Wronzberg said. “We had our game plan but we let them get ahead of us.”
Wronzberg scored the Rams only goal, shorthanded and unassisted, halfway through the first for her-team high fourth of the season. Wronzberg’s aggressive forechecking forced the Lakers defenceman to pass the puck in front of her net, allowing her to intercept it and score. That goal tied it 1-1 but one minute later, Brooklyn Irwin scored for the Lakers and they never looked back.
Being a first-year team and having a nearly identical record to the Rams, Wronzberg said some of the Rams may not have taken Nipissing seriously enough.
“I think most of the girls were feeling really positive before the game,” Wronzberg said. “You can’t judge an opponent before you hit the ice and we have to learn our lesson and make sure we don’t do that again.”
Emma Crawley started the game for the Rams and gave up four goals on 17 shots. Cassi McNichol came in to start the third and gave up a goal on her first shot, but stood tall the rest of the way making five saves. Coach Pierre Alain said the decision to make a change was to hopefully give his team momentum but Crawley was still upset.
“For a month now (Crawley’s) been keeping us in the games,” Alain said. “I just was trying to shake the team up.”
Alain said after the game he told his team to forget about this game and to just get ready for Laurentian on Sunday.
“I told my players, the better team won tonight,” Alain said. “That’s the end. We have a game tomorrow, let’s move on.”