WEST GOSHEN >> Unionville clinched its second consecutive Girls Flyers Cup title Friday night in emphatic fashion at Ice Line. The top-seeded Indians defeated second-seeded West Chester East, 9-2.
This year was a little more special for Unionville: The victory secured an undefeated, 20-0 season.
“It was definitely a big goal of ours entering this season,” said Indians junior captain Madison Doucette. “We wanted to send the seniors out on a good note and show that we’re a dominant program in girls hockey.”
The two teams were both in action for the second straight night, although they had distinctly different Thursdays. Unionville handled Downingtown East, 9-0 in the first semifinal, while the Vikings needed two overtimes to get past Radnor, 6-5.
And yet East gave the heavily favored Indians a good battle from the start. Goaltender Nicole Pastorino made several early saves, including an impressive stop on Doucette, Unionville’s top scorer.
“They definitely weren’t going to go down easy,” said Doucette. “They worked hard to get here, and they’re a good hockey team.”
But the Indians simply have too much firepower. Jordan Hower opened the scoring at the 5:22 mark off a set faceoff play. Doucette won the draw back to Hower, who fired a wrist shot past Pastorino. Doucette made it 2-0 from the left hashmark less than two minutes later, then Hannah Close got in on the action to spot Unionville a 3-0 advantage after one.
The Vikings stayed close, though. Thursday night’s hero Erin Bonner got East on the board early in the second period with a dazzling individual effort. She stripped the puck at her own blue line and fought off a defender the whole way down the ice on her way to a breakaway. She beat McKenzie Myers five-hole to apply the finish.
That play gave the Vikings life, but it also woke up the Indians. They responded with five goals in the frame off of 18 shots. Pastorino again was brilliant, but there was little she could do against the potent attack. Hower scored twice in the period to complete her hat trick. Claire Donovan bagged a pair of her own with Kaitlyn Anderson chipping in a goal as well.
The whole period was a display of Unionville’s dominance. The Indians boast remarkable depth, with two nearly equal lines and five defensemen who played regularly. They pinned East (13-7) in its end for long stretches at a time with a patient and precise passing.
Doucette was at the heart of most of it. She added two second-period assists to go with her first-period goal. That offensive output gave her an even 70 points on the season, a stunning total she accrued in just 17 games. Not surprisingly, Doucette was honored with the Bobby Clarke Award as Flyers Cup MVP.
The night, and the season for that matter, belonged to the Indians, although there was one last highlight for the Vikings. Kristin Eland, who played so well in the semifinal victory, scored from just inside the red line in the third period for East’s second goal. It was a well-deserved marker.
In the end, however, Unionville got the final say. Anderson’s second goal of the evening put the last touches on a wonderful unblemished campaign. Doucette made it clear she plans to end next year on a similar note.
“Ideally, we repeat again,” she said.
Still, she saved a thought for her opponents. Doucette embraced Bonner soon after the trophy ceremony.
“I have been playing with that girl and against that girl for three years,” said Doucette. “She never gives up. She’s a feisty player, and I mean that in the best way possible.”
Unionville 9, West Chester East 2
W.C. East 0 1 1 – 2
Unionville 3 5 1 – 9
Unionville goals: Hower 3, Doucette, Close, Donovan 2, Anderson 2.
W.C. East goals: Bonner, Eland.
Goalie Saves: Pastorino (WCE) 35, Myers (U) 3.