The University of Toronto Varsity Blues women’s hockey team defeated the Toronto Metropolitan University (TMU) Bold on February 4 in Saturday night’s Battle of Toronto at Varsity Arena.
Despite there being no score in the first period, there was a flurry of action. Varsity Blues’ top line of Taylor Trussler, Céline Frappier, and Natasha Athanasakos were flying for the Blues, generating lots of chances on the cycle. Bold goalie Lauren Griffin was up for the challenge, and the first period wrapped up knotted at zeros.
The Blues got into some penalty trouble at the start of the second period, but midway through the period they cleaned up their game and started seeing results on the scoreboard. Caroline Eagles broke the ice for the Blues, getting a point shot through the traffic and past Griffin for her second of the season.
The Blues weren’t done yet. Late in the second period, centre Kaitlyn McKnight scooped up a loose puck in front of the Bold’s net, doubling the Blues’ lead heading into the third period.
In the third period, the Blues shut it down. They clogged up the neutral zone and continued to silence the Bold’s offense. With one minute and 17 seconds left in the game, defense Lauren Omoto cleared the puck into the empty net to secure the 3–0 victory for the Blues.
“It really is a team effort,” said goaltender Madeline Albert in an interview with The Varsity. Albert made 27 saves en route to her fifth shutout of the season against the Bold and credited her teammates, especially Blues defense Olivia Hilton, who “saved [her] bacon” on one play for the shutout.
“You just gotta keep working at it, keep playing the game, and keep playing Blues hockey,” said Albert, who explained that ‘Blues hockey’ is “grit, blue collar, getting in those corners, and winning those battles — and just bleeding all of it.”
The Varsity Blues played their brand of hockey against the Bold and took home the victory that improved their record to 20–2–1–0 this season and extended their winning streak to 16 straight games.
The Blues have four games remaining before the quarterfinals. Their next game is on the road against Nipissing University on February 10.