LAKE PLACID - The Lake Placid girls hockey team was hoping to catch Beekmantown off guard a day after the Eagles lost their only game of the season.
But a mere 10 shots on goal wasn't enough to get the job done for the Blue Bombers.
Paced by Kallie Villemaire's hat trick, Beekmantown skated to a 4-2 victory at the Olympic Center Wednesday over the Blue Bombers to wrap up the top seed in the Upstate Girls Hockey League playoffs.
Lake Placid’s Emily Godin controls the puck in front of Beekmantown’s Emily Raville during the third period of Wednesday’s game at the Olympic Center.
(Enterprise photo — Lou Reuter)
Villemaire also tacked on an assist for a four-point performance as Beekmantown rebounded from Tuesday's home loss to Canton. After falling for the first time in 52 regular season games, the Eagles never trailed against Lake Placid, but they did have to break deadlocks twice in the matchup to pull out the win.
One of those occasions came when Villemaire stuffed a puck past Lake Placid netmider Tanner Stanton for a short-handed goal in the middle of the second period for a 3-2 Eagles lead. The tally was the second of the contest for the sophomore, and it ultimately proved to be the game-winner. Villemaire then completed her hat trick on an empty-net goal with the game clock winding down.
"Their loss to Canton is the talk of the league right now, and we were hoping they would come in a little deflated and we could catch them," Lake Placid head coach Sandy Huber said. "Last time, we took them to overtime, and we were hoping for another close one. We just could not generate enough offense."
The Blue Bombers did get two nice goals with senior captains Kendra Manning and Brooke Reid each finding the back of the net. Stanton also had a solid night, finishing with 25 saves.
The Eagles finished the regular season with a 16-1-1 record.
The loss dropped Lake Placid to 8-5-3 overall with one regular-season game remaining, which will be at home Friday against Albany Academy. A win in that matchup will clinch the second seed for the Blue Bombers, and along with it, a home-game in the opening round of the playoffs. If the Blue Bombers lose, they can still finish as the second seed if Saranac Lake knocks off Albany on Saturday.
"We did what we had to to win this game and wrap up the first playoff seed," Beekmantown coach Ray Guay said. "We looked a bit tired and sluggish but we got the win. It was a good night for Kallie, and we had a good night defensively."
Villemaire notched her first goal 6:29 into the first period off an assist from Katie Matott.
Manning pulled Lake Placid even with a goal 58 seconds later. On the play, Samantha Barney stole the puck near center ice, skated it over the Beekmantown blue line and headed to the net. But instead of taking a shot, she slid a pass back to a wide-open Manning, who wristed the puck past Eagles goalie Kayleigh Bell.
Beekmantown answered with a goal from Kiley Regan at the 9:19 mark to give her team a 2-1 edge after the first period.
Trailing 2-1, Lake Placid evened the score on Reid's goal, which came on a power play 3:35 into the second period. Villemaire then put Beekmantown ahead for good, scoring at the 6:36 mark of the second with a teammate in the penalty box.
Villemaire iced the win for Beekmantown on her empty-net goal with 10 seconds left in the game.
"Beekmantown is a passing team, that's their game" Huber said. "We were just hoping to pick off some of their passes and make the most of our chances. We just didn't get enough of them."
Beekmantown 4, Lake Placid 2
1. B, Villemaire, (Matott), 6:29, 2. LP, Manning (S. Barney), 7:27; 3. B, Regan (Villemaire), 9:19
4. LP, Reid (P. Barney), 3:35; 5. B, Villemaire; 6:36, shg,
6. B, Villemaire, 14:50, eng.
Shots on goal: Beekmantown 29, Lake Placid 10.
Saves: B, Bell 8; LP, Stanton 25.