I’m not ashamed to admit, I shed tears of happiness when happy things happen. Luckily, I was able to shed quite a few more tears as the Wisconsin women’s hockey squad won their record seventh National Championship Sunday, defeating Ohio State 1-0.
Wisconsin hockey grab an early lead
The action started right away and it was Ohio State who seemed to control the game during the first half of the period. The Lady Buckeyes took 16 shots on goal to only five by the Lady Badgers.
However, UW made one of those shots count, as Wisconsin’s center Kirsten Simms started off the scoring at the 6:32 mark in the first period. The goal was assisted by Claire Enright.
It seemed like that was only a precursor of what was to come.
Momentum shifted toward Wisconsin hockey
If the first period was controlled by Ohio State, outside of Simms’s goal, then the second period belonged to Wisconsin hockey.
The Lady Badgers were able to fire off 11 shots against Ohio State goalie Amanda Thiele. However, she proved equal to the test and stopped every attack against her net.
Meanwhile, the Lady Buckeyes were able to muster just six shots of their own against the brick wall that is better known as Cami Kronish.
Going into the second intermission, Wisconsin hockey maintained its 1-0 lead.
Wisconsin hockey broke its own record
The third period was a tightly contested affair, as Wisconsin fired off six shots on goal while Ohio State responded with nine salvos of its own. Neither goalie surrendered an inch.
With just a minute left in regulation, Ohio State pulled Thiele for an extra attacker. Luckily for the Badgers, this move amounted to nothing.
When the final buzzer rang out, the Wisconsin women’s hockey team had just won a record-setting seventh National Championship.
Stars for the Wisconsin hockey team
Freshman forward Kristen Simms capped off an impressive debut campaign with what turned out to be the only goal in the National Championship.
However, game-winning goals are nothing new for this freshman. For the season, three of her 16 goals were game-winners, including today. She also contributed with 16 assists, giving her 31 points in 41 games played.
Senior goalie Cami Kronish came up big on the biggest stage. She notched her eighth shutout of the season with her 31 stops today.
In a season that wasn’t always the easiest, Kronish’s attitude was incredibly resilient and instrumental in helping her teammates rebound from a stretch in which they had lost five consecutive games, two of those games being losses to Ohio State.
In a post-game interview, head coach Mark Johnson praised Kronish for having the tenacity to stay in the program and eventually earn the right to mind the net.
In a day that saw the men’s basketball team win their second game in the NIT, they were forced to relinquish the center stage to a group of remarkable young ladies who continue to build the dynasty that has become Wisconsin women’s hockey.