The Polar Bear Holiday Tournament

   The day after Christmas some members of the Carolina Lady Eagles squad started the 9+ hour drive to New Haven, Connecticut. Those who left on Monday spent parts of Tuesday touring schools and hanging out in New York City while the their teammates made the whole drive in one day. Tournament play started on Wednesday with a surprise visit from last year's coach Holly, aka Mom. Puck drop that morning was against the Brewster Bulldogs, a team from New York.

   The team took on the Lady Bulldogs with a quick start jumping to a 2-0 lead after the first period. The North Carolina girls added another goal in the second period and finished the game strong with another 3 goals in the third period. The Eagles downed the Bulldogs 6-0 with a 13 save shutout in net. Later that day the tier two Eagles took on the tier one tournament hosts, the Connecticut Polar Bears. The girls were down by a goal heading into the third period but tied it up against a mostly prep school line up. This tournament does not end games in ties, nor does it end round robin games in overtime. The game went straight into a shootout. Tournament rules stated that all skaters had to shoot once before shooting again, and it took all of them. In a 12 round nail biter the Carolina Eagles were on the last shooter before having to repeat players before either team buried the puck. Round 12 was a goal and a save for the Eagle squad who walked away with a 3-2 victory.

   Thursday morning held a tough match up for the girls as the team faced off against Canada's top tier two team, the Ancaster Avalanche. The Carolina team played well but was unable to capitalize on any chances and picked up their first loss of the tournament 7-0. The girls had secured the second place seed and were slated to face the Polar Bears in the semi finals. The semi-final was another tight one and once again the team was down 2-1 headed into the third period. After pulling the goalie, the Eagles scrambled around the net and tied the game with 15.4 seconds remaining. After a scoreless overtime the teams headed into their second shootout in as many days. This time the shootout was only 4 rounds and the Lady Eagles were on the short side with a 3-2 loss. 

   The team played well throughout the tournament finishing with a 2-2 record. The team returned home for a New Year's party before heading back to school. The team was supposed to head up to Annapolis, Maryland to face Navy on January 7th and 8th but a winter storm hit preventing the team from going. The team has practices before going to Maryland and Virginia January 21st for a big 4 game weekend.

Highlights: Carolina Eagles vs. Brewster Bulldogs

Highlights: Carolina Eagles vs. Connecticut Polar Bears

Highlights: Carolina Eagles vs. Ancaster Avalanche

Emily Petersen