BOSTON – Dragon junior goaltender Rachel Myette accomplished something on Tuesday afternoon that no other goaltender ever has; shut out an opponent at both Fenway Park and the TD Garden.
Her Garden shutout, of course, came last March when she shut out Falmouth in the Division 2 state championship game. On Tuesday, she turned seven shots at a frigid Fenway Park in a game that Myette and her teammates won’t soon forget.
“It just feels amazing, with my team in front of me I can always trust them and I halways have their back if they make a mistake,” said Myette. “I’ve had a shutout at the Garden and now one at Fenway, so I’m sure not a lot of people can say that.”
Duxbury got the game’s lone goal 9:10 into the first period on a goal from Jane Dudley. Hingham goalie Taylor Walsh made a beautiful save on the initial shot from Meredith Wright, but the puck ricocheted back to Dudley who ripped a shot from inside the right circle for her first goal of the season. Liz Collins was also credited with an assist.
“She was terrific out there,” said Duxbury coach Friend Weiler of Dudley. “I thought she was moving well out there so it was a perfect place for her to notch her first one.”
Hingham came out strong in the opening period, controlling the puck and taking advantage of time on attack early. But the Dragons settled their nerves and dominated the rest of the period, outshooting the Harborwomen, 7-2, in the first.
The combination of Dudley and Marissa Fichter were a big reason why. Wherever the puck was, one of the two was always nearby. Their speed to attack the puck-carrier and the ability to get away was something that Hingham couldn’t match.
Experience of a lifetime: Neither team will forget their game at Fenway anytime soon. The MIAA got three games at Fenway this year and to be selected to play, both teams were honored.
“This is once in a life time,” said Weiler. “The smiles of their faces, that’s what keeps me coming to the rink anyways but today they were a little bit brighter and wider and a great experience for everybody. I’m thrilled to be a part of it. Just a terrific day.”
It took a little but longer for Duxbury to settle into the game with a tougher playing surface that what they are used to, but once they figured it out, Duxbury never looked back.
“First five minutes it took us to get used to the ice surface,” said Dudley. “It’s a little different, it’s a little brittle. But after the first five minutes we started to really get into our game.”
The Dragons are no strangers to playing on the big stage. Three years in a row, they have played at the Garden. From last year, there are only two new players to this team, so adjusting to the big stage is no stranger to them.
“It kind of like the Garden, where most of the team has experience in a special venue,” said Myette.
Relying on Myette: The Dragons didn’t have to depend too much on their senior goaltender, but she came up with the big saves when needed.
Hingham’s Catherine Linehan had had a three-on-one opportunity and a semi-breakaway but both times her efforts were thwarted by Myette.
“Perfect place again to get the first shutout of the year but she’s a stall work back there,” said Weiler. “We depend on her a lot and build out from the net.”
Myette also can rely upon her teammate to help her out. That was shown by them only giving up seven shots, which mostly came in the beginning of the opening period.
“With my team in front of me I can always trust them and I always have their back if they make a mistake,” said Myette.
It turns out she can trust them. When a loose puck was in the neutral zone, the Dragons were quick to take possession and never let a scoring chance occur for the Harborwomen.
“We tried to keep them to the outside, and I thought we were successful doing that,” said Weiler. “But against a strong team that can breakaway at any time I thought our girls really worked on the one-on-one battles and won a lot of pucks in the neutral zone.”