By James Murphy
The Shamrocks Under 19 team was back at work at Ristuccia Arena this past week after what, despite a 2-3 record at the Stony Brook Tournament last week, Director Of Hockey Operations and Head Coach Sean Fisher felt was a productive experience on and off the ice. “We finished 2-3 overall but we were in every game, and that’s enjoyable,” Fisher said. “We went 1-3 in our round robin yet very easily could have been 4-0 in my opinion. I think we have to start better and play complete games, but lots of good things.”
Heading into the tournament last weekend, Fisher was looking for all areas of the game to improve for the team and he definitely saw a drastic improvement on the power play and the penalty kill. “Our special teams was quite good considering the limited practice reps we have had thus far, so that was a major positive,” Fisher said. “I thought we were better on the forecheck and gave teams problems at times.”
One thing that continues to be a work in progress though is the play through the neutral zone. “I know how we play in our zone will get cleaned up, we probably just have to be better with limiting opportunities off the rush and how we play in the neutral zone,” Fisher pointed out.
One of the main goals heading into last weekend was an off-ice goal. Fisher was hoping that a nine-hour ride both to Hamilton, Ontario and back would help the girls become a tighter knit group. He also organized some team-building activities to achieve team unity. “We got to do some insightful team building activities that I think will pay dividends for us down the road,” Fisher said. “It is something we need to keep working hard to improve on, but the girls have been all in, so that is a positive sign!”
Fisher took time to note the solid play and hustle of one player as well. “I was really happy with the play of Madison Nichols,” Fisher said. “She skates and competes every shift regardless of the score. I think she has adjusted quite nicely to the U19 level and she was able to find the stat sheet a number of times this weekend.”