Penguin Emperors played two close games over the weekend to win bronze in the British Champs.
On Saturday we faced Manchester, in a physical game that was neck-and-neck all the way. At the end of the first quarter the teams were even at 1-1 but by half time Penguin had nudged into the lead, 3-2. We scored from a penalty in Q3 but Manchester came back immediately with two in close succession to make it 4-4 going into the final quarter.
Manchester came out fighting and took the lead for the first time, but Nora evened the score with shot from the half-way line. There was only a minute remaining when Manchester scored again, but another goal from Nora Benko pulled it back for Penguin, levelling the score with 30 seconds to go. The game was decided in the closing seconds when a final shot from Manchester just snatched the victory, sending us into the bronze medal playoff.
In the playoffs today we faced City of Liverpool in an equally tense match. Our Leah Hagen opened the scoring in the first minute and soon afterwards Nora scored, taking advantage of a man-up. A cracking save by Penguin goalie Katie Collins denied Liverpool, and Leah scored her second to put us ahead 3-0 at the end of Q1.
In the next quarter Nora added her second goal, Liverpool claimed two back, and Leah took her hat trick to take us ahead 5-2. Nora then scored again for her hat trick and Adrienn Hari responded to another goal from Liverpool, taking our lead to 7-3 at the end of the first half.
In something of a replay from the previous day, Liverpool clawed back in the third quarter bringing the scores level at 9-9 with five minutes to play. Penguin’s Jos Bretherick scored two to put us back in the lead, 11-9, and a final goal from Liverpool in the dying seconds simply wasn’t enough to beat our determined ladies!
Penguin took the bronze, with Manchester the overall winners and Otter in second place.