Source: Grosse Pointe News Online

North edges Liggett in title game

by Bob St. John Sports Editor

January 03, 2013

For the first time in four years, Grosse Pointe North’s girls’ hockey team won the University Liggett Holiday Invitational.

North beat host Liggett 3-0 in the title game played Saturday, Dec. 22. It was the first time these city rivals played for the championship.

“Our girls were focused in both games and it showed with some excellent play at both ends of the ice,” North head coach Joe Lucchese said. “We haven’t won the trophy in four years, so it’s nice to win it back with a nice win.”

North has played in this tournament championship game the past several years, but the past four were lost by a goal to nemesis Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook-Kingswood.

“We have played some tough luck games the past few years with Cranbrook, but we had the fortune of playing Liggett in this year’s final,” Lucchese said. “It was a good game for both teams.”

The Norsemen scored a goal in each period and senior goalkeeper Sarah Richardson posted her second straight shutout against the Knights.

Senior Julia Henderson scored a goal at the 9:38 mark of the first period with seniors Katie Bowles and Bryn Moody drawing assists.

In the second period, freshman Lindsay Gallagher tallied, with senior Natalie Skorupski and sophomore Karina Lucchese netting assists.

The Norsemen iced the game when senior Sara Villani scored a power-play goal at the 6:16 mark of the third period as freshman Elizabeth Gallagher had the lone assist.

Head coach Cassie Jaeckle and her Knights had ample chances to score goals as freshman Jennifer Kusch, freshman Grace Scarfone, freshman Allison Stapleton, senior Hannah Mason and junior Hannah Hodges had solid scoring chances.

Richardson came up with some big saves to preserve the shutout and Knights’ freshman goalkeeper Olivia Portillo faced nearly 70 shots, stopping all but three.

Making the All-Tournament team for North were Skorupski, Moody and Richardson, and for the Knights it was junior Ania Dow, senior Aria Ganz-Waple and Portillo.

“We could have scored a few more goals if it wasn’t for Liggett’s goalie stepping up with a nice game,” Lucchese said. “Both goalies played well.”

In the semifinals, Grosse Pointe North had little trouble beating Northville 8-0 and the shocker came when Liggett defeated Cranbrook-Kingswood 3-2. It was Liggett’s first win over CK in several years.

“The girls played very well and it was a big win for our program,” Jaeckle said. “Our girls played very well, especially down the stretch when we had the one-goal lead.”

Grosse Pointe North improved to 6-1 overall, while Liggett is 4-4 overall.