On May 22nd the Frisch Cougars faced the HAFTR Flames in the girls hockey semi-finals. This game would serve as a rematch of sorts from last year’s semi-final game where Frisch won decisively. This time it was Frisch making the treck out to Lawrence, Long Island as HAFTR earned the top spot in the Eastern Conference earning the semifinal home game.
The game started with both teams battling hard. It was apparent from the drop of the ball that this was not last year’s HAFTR team. This senior heavy team was not going to go down without a fight. It was Frisch, however, who got on the board first. Freshman Hannah Weisbrot won a battle in the corner, spun out and took the ball to the net. Firing the ball off the HAFTR goalies pads, Weisbrot got her own rebound and snapped it through her legs for a 1-0 lead which the team would take into the first intermission.
Frisch struck again on a wraparound by junior Kayla Blumenfeld for a 2-0 lead. Frisch goaltender junior Jessica Adler was brilliant in goal, stopping HAFTR on everything they threw on net. The Frisch defense was stellar (even playing shorthanded due to an injury early in the second period). HAFTR, however, would not back down and was relentless in their pursuit. They finally broke through on a quick one-timer from the slot to the top corner that even Henry Lundqvist would have had trouble with. On the bench, Coach Yaak Lisker turned to freshman Abigail Rochlin and Hannah Weisbrot and told them to get that one back, and that’s exactly what they did on the next shift. Rochlin scored on a feed from Weisbrot to regain a two goal lead.
Heading into the third period, Frisch knew HAFTR would continue to bring the pressure. After several key stops HAFTR managed to squeak one through Adler’s pads to cut the lead back to one. Again, Yaak Lisker turned to their second line offense and for the second time that evening Rochlin and Weisbrot responded following the HAFTR goal. This time it was Weisbrot scoring her second goal of the game giving Frisch that desirable two-goal lead. Moments later Frisch got called for a delay of game penalty when freshman defenseman Aliza Pavel had her stick broken and she did not drop it in time. Frisch’s resolve was about to be tested. Junior offense-man Michal Michael on the bench turned to Coach Lisker and said, “I want in.” Seeing the determination in her eyes, Coach Lisker put her in to kill the penalty. Michael, along with juniors Areila Katz and Rachel Markowitz, brilliantly killed off the whole penalty. Just seconds after a line change on the fly, freshman Talia Gellis put one home to extend Frisch’s lead to 5-2. Frisch’s defense would hold the rest of the way as Frisch clinched its birth in the championship.
Frisch awaits the winner of the other semi-finals match SAR @ Ma’ayanot in the hopes of defending last year’s title.
By Coach Yaakov Lisker