The PWHPA’s best team in 2022-23 won the Championship after a dramatic playoff run.
Harvey’s won their semi-final in a tight overtime battle. First-placed Harvey’s led, but last-placed Sonnet ground them down, and Claire Thompson’s third-period goal tied the game to force overtime. Early in the extra frame, Harveys’ Emily Clark crashed the net and banged in a winner.
Scotiabank narrowly squeezed themselves into the finals. Adidas led 3-1 late in the period, but Victoria Bach capitalized on a powerplay to bring the team within one. Scotiabank drew another penalty, and with their goalie pulled, Scotiabank pounded the Adidas net six on four. Bach scored her second of the night and tied the game. Blayre Turnbull scored a breakaway goal winning the game in overtime.
In the championship game, goals came fast and furious as Scotiabank and Harvey’s traded dangerous offensive chances. Scotiabank forward Kelly Pannek opened the scoring and netted a second in short succession to build a quick lead. Jamie-Lee Rattray responded quickly for Hervey's and brought the game within one.
The back and forth continued with another Scotiabank goal. Alex Carpenter had a long shot sneak through the pads of Ann-Renée Desbiens in the third shot to beat her through traffic. Scotiabank’s strategy was clear: crowd the net and shoot the puck at it like a game of Plinko.
Harvey’s pulled a step closer as the period came to a close. Emily Clark scored a back-door tap-in from a cross-crease pass by Jessie Eldridge. The goal ended the first period with Harvey’s trailing 3-2.
Harvey’s stormed the second period and turned up the heat. Harvey’s passing was clinical in the offensive zone. Eldridge lasered a pass to Poulin, who shot the puck through the pads of Scotiabank’s Emerance Maschmeyer. Clark smacked the loose puck into the net and tied the game.
Clark was hot and a few minutes later took the puck in on her own. The sparky forward tore into the zone on a breakaway, roofing the puck in her backhand to complete her hat trick and take the lead.
Turnbull scored Scotiabank’s fourth scrappy goal in the dying second of the second tying the game.
Scotiabank and Harvey’s clashed in the third. They traded scoring chances and big checks. The period began to wind down without a goal to break the tie.
Harvey’s had the puck pinned in the Scotiabank end with about a minute to play. Eldridge emerged from a scrum in the corner and headed to the net. Her initial shot hit the stick of the net-front Poulin, who redirected it back to Eldridge. She crossed the crease and lifted a shot over the outstretched pad of Maschmeyer.
The Harvey's players jumped into each other’s arms. Maschmeyer immediately raised her arms in protest.
Concerned with the positioning of Poulin, the Scotiabank bench challenged the goal. The referees huddled as the crowd buzzed with nervous energy. This decision would likely decide the fate of the game. It would give Harvey's the lead with just 42 seconds to play.
The signal came from the referee: good goal!
Last-second efforts were in vain, and the buzzer sounded to crown Harvey’s champions.