PARKER HAT TRICK, HANSON SHUTOUT HIGHLIGHT PRIDE’S LATEST VICTORY
By Jane Norton
Another Saturday night. Another loud and large crowd at Warrior Ice Arena. Another win for the undefeated Boston Pride.
But that’s not to say some things weren’t different this time, as the Pride continued their undefeated season with an 8-0 victory over the Connecticut Whale:
- Mary Parker had a hat trick, with a goal in every period.
- Jillian Dempsey scored the team’s first shorthanded goal of the season.
- Lexi Bender scored her first NWHL regular season goal since her rookie season in 2016-17.
- McKenna Brand and Lexie Laing scored nine seconds apart in the third period.
- Victoria Hanson stopped all 18 shots and earned the victory in goal in her first NWHL start. It was also the first shutout in the NWHL this season.
“Getting my first win, and having it be a shutout, is just awesome,” said Hanson. “It felt really good. The arena looked like it was sold out and the Pride fans were so loud and into the game. I had family there, so that was also special. This was a team win. My defense was incredible from the opening faceoff, and our forwards are always stellar. You know eventually they’re going to score a lot, and they did.”
After an even opening ten minutes, the Pride started to click, scoring twice late in the first period. Parker tallied on a wraparound with 6:45 left, making it nine straight games to start the season the Pride have scored the first goal. Bender made it 2-0 late in the first.
Connecticut goaltender Sonjia Shelly stopped 21 of 23 shots in the first.
The Whale, who were led by head coach Colton Orr for the first time, played a solid second period, but were unable to mount a sustained attack on the Boston net. With 1:15 left in the period, Parker scored her second of the game.
“We weren’t great in the second period, so we talked during the intermission about finishing strong,” said Boston forward Alyssa Wohlfeiler, who had an assist in the game. “The attitude in the room was, ‘We’re better than this, so let’s show it.’ We also wanted to be sharp on defense and close out the win and hopefully the shutout for Vic Hanson.”
The Pride backed up their words. Any hope for Connecticut to get back into game was dashed when Dempsey scored her shorthanded goal at 4:45 of the third to make it 4-0. Three minutes later, Brand and Laing scored within nine seconds of each other. Laing scored again late and Parker notched her third in the final seconds.
“You always hope for your linemate to get a hat trick, but I was especially happy to see Mary get it,” said Wohlfeiler. “Mary plays the game the right way, and she’s so quiet… she never complains! It’s awesome to see Mary have a big moment like that in front of our fans.”
The Pride are back at Warrior next Saturday, Nov. 30 for a 6:30 p.m. matchup against the Metropolitan Riveters. Fans will want to order their tickets now at pride.nwhl.zone/tickets, as the fans in Boston are filling the arena each night for their first-place team.
The Whale host Buffalo at Danbury Arena on Saturday at 4:30 and the Riveters on Sunday at 4:10. Tickets are available for those games at whale.nwhl.zone/tickets.
Photo Credit: Michelle Jay