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Quick Does The Trick For Nichols

A solid effort was rewarded with a win.

Abbey Gicewicz had three points as Nichols School defeated Trinity 5-1 in North American Prep Hockey Association action that was played at the Dann Memorial Rink, Saturday afternoon.

It was much needed morale boost for the Lady Vikings who went a disappointing 1-3 in last weekend’s league-wide regular season tournament that was held at Nichols.

“After last weekend this is definitely a good rebound,” senior Hailey Miller said. “Scoring the first goal, getting into it, and then finally winning. Having a big lead for the entire game, for the most part, its definitely exciting and getting our team back on track. Our spirits were high on the bench and I definitely think we’re headed in the right direction.”

The Vikings wasted no time as they jumped on Trinity with two quick goals in the first as Audrey Lazar scored four minutes in, and Miller netted the game-winner three minutes later.

“I think the biggest thing was getting in the game and being focused,” said Abbey Gicewicz. “We were ready before (the game) and we just had to come out with a bang after last weekend…We’re excited to get that ‘W’ and the first two goals were big to get us into the game.”

Nichols truly put the game on ice when Maddie Moell put them up 4-1 just 50 seconds into the third period.

While the offense was clicking the other major factor was the play of junior goalie Jada Brenon who stopped 25 of the 26 shots that she faced.

It wasn’t so much the number of saves that Brenon made, but rather the timing. She made at least a half dozen momentum-swing saves that kept Nichols in charge.

“Definitely,” said Miller. “In recent games we’ve noticed that if we get a goal on us our momentum goes down, our spirits are a little low. Even though that’s not at all what we should do. So her standing on her head for us really helped out. She made some really key saves. It was amazing to watch her and fun to cheer her on the entire game.”

Chloe Cyr got Trinity’s lone goal with 7:15 left to play in the second period, but Nichols answered back quickly as Gicewicz, who was playing in her first game in two weeks, scored two minutes later.

“I felt great. It was my first game back from concussion,” Gicewicz said. “So it’s good. I just knew I had to be part of the team and act like nothing happened.” Defensively, Nichols played a much tighter more disciplined game compared to last weekend. So Trinity did not get a lot of consistent pressure on Brenon. Their scoring opportunities where spread out and sudden, which meant Brenon had to be on her toes to keep them at bay when those chances popped up suddenly.

“I think for us, and for Jada personally, this was a huge game because she did make those really, really big saves,” said Nichols assistant coach Colleen Harris. “And a game like this is hard because she’s not getting peppered all the time. She did a really good job of holding her own down there.” Harris added that she felt the team’s fore checking as a whole was excellent as they played extremely confident in the offensive zone. And when the fore checking created scoring chances they made the most of those chances, as opposed to panicking and just throwing the puck away.

The combination of injuries and a couple of players being away because of travel team obligations meant Nichols depth was really tested on this day, and they passed that test.

“Going into this game we did mention the fact that we were a little low in numbers,” Miller said, “it almost motivates us a little more. We know we’re gonna have to try that much harder. We need to incorporate the same amount of effort every shift throughout the entire game.”

Unfortunately for Nichols forward LeeAnn Wright might be added to the list of injured players. With 1:03 left in the game Wright was on the receiving end of an aggressively thrown elbow and she ended up going shoulder-first into the boards with a sickening thud. It is unsure how much, if any, time she will miss.

Courtney Stanisewzki capped off the scoring with a late goal. Captain Allison Attea picked up assists on Nichols first two goals.

“Scoring the first goal and scoring it fast was definitely what really helped us win this game,” Miller said.

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