Playoff Series Recap

Feature photo by Shanna Martin-Book

The Markham Thunder took les Canadiennes de Montreal to three games, but were not able to return to the Clarkson Cup Final. Les Canadiennes were able to stifle the Thunder offence in games one and three on their way to the series win.

The Thunder played the series without Ailish Forfar and Nicole Kosta. The opening frame of game one saw Montreal score on the power play, and good chances for Markham came from Jess Jones, Jenna McParland, Laura Stacey and Victoria Bach. The second period opened with Bach ringing a shot off the crossbar, and Erica Howe making great saves. Les Canadiennes once again scored on the advantage, taking the 2-0 lead into the final frame. Howe continued to keep the Thunder in the game making stellar saves, another post was hit, and two chances on the power play provided great chances. Montreal slid in a rebound chance just past the halfway point of the period, making the final score 3-0 for les Canadiennes.

Markham’s bench was shortened by two more players as Laura Fortino and Jones did not dress for the remainder of the series. Early into game two, the Thunder were beneficiaries of a power play, and McParland tipped the puck behind Emerance Maschmeyer after Bach also got her stick on the puck that was shot by Jamie Lee Rattray. Back on the power play not long after, Jocelyne Larocque sent the puck down to McParland for the one-timer to give Markham the 2-0 lead. The team had to kill off four consecutive penalties, with the last one carrying over to the second period. Howe was fully in the zone, making mind-boggling saves to keep the score in the Thunder’s favour.

Five and a half minutes into the second, Montreal found themselves back in the box. History repeated itself as McParland netted the hat trick, as she had done in the same building in the second game of last season’s playoff series. Les Canadiennes would quickly get one back, but would once again take a penalty. Ella Matteucci ripped the puck into the net with assists going to Jocelyne Larocque and Brooke Webster, making the score 4-1.

The final 20 minutes kicked off with Howe continuing to make great saves, and a huge blast from Megan Bozek. Going on the advantage again, Stacey tipped the puck into the net, but it was called off. The teams exchanged penalties, and as the clock wound down, Montreal put on the extra attacker. Les Canadiennes would score two goals, but Howe would slam the door in the final minute, securing the 4-3 win.

Game three began with great defensive efforts from Bozek and Stacey, and getting some early power plays led to some good chances, but it would be Montreal who would open the scoring off a deflection. The second period did not go as planned, as Montreal scored three quick goals (one came on the power play). A fifth Montreal goal would mark the midway point of the game. The third period displayed great team defence, especially on the penalty kill, but Markham could not find the back of the net. The final score was 5-0 for les Canadiennes.