To run a short bench or not
Posted by Dean Holden at March 17th, 2013
by Teri Balow, Waconia 12U B Hockey, 14 March 2013 14:58
To run a short bench or not?
My answer is 100 percent no. Here is the story.
My husband has been the head coach for the last five years – two years as a 10U B head coach and the last two as the 12U B head coach.
This is the first year that our association has won the chance to go to Regions, with the opportunity to go to State. Our team consisted of 13 girls, five last-year 12U B, one Goalie (first-year 12U B) and seven first-year skaters. One of these skaters just took up skating and hockey this year.
We completed the year undefeated in the regular District 6 season with one tie. We went to the playoffs to come out again undefeated.
How did we do it? Every girl, every shift, every period, they went out when it was their turn. It did not matter if it was a power play or a power kill or a full strength play. If it was their turn, they went out. The only time this didn’t happen was when one of the girls was sick or out for vacation.
So we find ourselves in the last game for a berth to state. It is the third-place game. The game went into five overtimes. Yes, the girls played three hours of hockey. At no time, did someone miss a shift or get short-shifted. The girls skated hard and put their whole passionate self into every shift. As you can guess, the other team short-benched their girls. We lost the game.
As we, the parents, stood outside the locker room waiting for our girls, the winning team came out of the locker room. Yes, they seemed to all be happy with the result of the game. But as I watched, a minimum of four girls walked out of the locker room; I was so “sad” for them, as they had no color to their face nor was there a touch of sweat in their long hair. These were the girls that had not touched the ice since mid-second period. So they missed out on the third period as well as five overtimes.
Who won the game? Our girls “won” the game because they had played as a team the entire year. They together got the team to where they were. With an important game such as this to take us to State, should we have played the “stars?” Absolutely we did – the entire team are our STARS.
A quick note of two years previous in the District 6 playoff games, final game to be champions, one of the players that had not scored a goal all year, put in the winning goal.
I am a proud wife to the head coach, as well as a proud mother of a daughter who agrees 100 percent that we are the true winners.