Shamrocks Open U-16 Tier II Championships With a Win

SAN JOSE, CA-The Vermont Shamrocks took the first step forward to their goal of winning a national title with a 4-1 win over the East Coast Wizards in their first game of the USA Hockey Girls U-16 Tier II National Tournament on Wednesday.It looked like the ECW was (were) going to get the early advantage, but Courtney Peyko stood tall in the VT net, turning away an early penalty-shot.The Shamrocks, motivated by the stop, won the race to the score board when Molly Dunphy kicked off the scoring late in the first period, clanging home the first goal of the game.In the second, the Shamrock penalty-kill was put to the test.They killed off two before Peyko handed over the goaltending reigns to Victoria Gibson mid-way through the second.Gibson would help kill off the third Wizard PP before the Shamrocks headed off the ice for intermission number two.Jade Remillard had finally seen enough, and added the Vermont lead with 13 minutes to go in the third.Rachel Morse, who set up Remillard's tally made it 3-0 for the Green Mountain Girls, and the end seemed near.However, the Wizards' had one last trick up their sleeve, cutting the score to 3-1 while on the power-play.It was too little, too late, as Remillard and the green and white would have the final word.Jade knocked home her second tally of contest, pacing Vermont to a 1-0 record in the standings out in the land of Sharks.Vermont is back in action against the Lady Ducks on Thursday morning at 10:00 AM EST.Special thanks to Jeff Cota, and Desiree Hurlbut, who ran the @VTShamrocks twitter feed during the game, for their contributions to this article.Stay tuned to the Newport Daily Express online, or follow me (Mike Olmstead) on twitter at @nekdrums for the latest updates from San Jose throughout the tournament.