Rachael Miller nets game tying goal
Like I said last week, town league hockey is better than ever, with the talent pool shared evenly among all eight teams.
Case in point—Thursday, December 20 when the Last Steep and John Williams Builders (JWB) played to a 3-3 tie.
JWB took control of the first period from the start, shelling Last Steep goalie Josh Bock with shots. Big hustle matched with a solid team attack by JWB left the Last Steep reeling in confusion.
After a couple of close calls, JWB found the net in the fourth minute of the first period, when Willy Miller fed Issac Long in the slot for a tip-in goal.
About the only counter-attack the Steep could put together came from Jeff Ryba, but the JWB defense shut him down repeatedly.
Ryba finally broke through in the final two minutes of the first period, slipping a no-angle shot inside the far post to tie the game 1-1.
The goal energized the Steep as they came into the second period a completely different team. Strong pressure on the puck in the neutral zone broke up the JWB transition game and offered up scoring chances for the Steep.
JWB goalie Joe Weber made a handful of saves in the first minute, but the Steep found the net on a power play four minutes into the period. Working the puck around the zone, the Steep found Tim Seifert alone at the point. Seifert fired a shot but Weber blocked it. Steep player Pete Cook followed on the rebound and slipped it past Weber to give the Steep a 2-1 lead.
The Steep carried their momentum all period long but Weber made a series of saves to deny the Steep their reward, keeping the game tight.
The momentum shifted back and forth in the first eight minutes of the third period with both teams firing shots but goalies Weber and Bock were in the zone, stopping every attempt.
JWB tied the game up with 3:35 left in the final period on an unassisted goal by John Mortell but the Steep responded—actually, Ryba responded—two minutes later, carrying the puck through two zones and scoring.
Down 3-2 with time running out, JWB picked up the pace searching frantically for the game-tying goal. Pressure in the neutral zone created opportunities for JWB and Mortell found Rachael Miller in the slot for the game-tying goal with 16 seconds left salvaging the tie for JWB.