Semifinal: Devil Dogs vs. Tour Stealth
Both teams played a strong game. The Devil Dogs gave up the first goal, evened it up at 1-1, then allowed the go-ahead goal with about four minutes left.
They had some chances to tie it back up but couldn’t make it happen.
Stealth added an empty-net goal with two seconds left.
Final Score: Stealth 3, Devil Dogs 1
Semifinal: Choice Inline Selects vs. Top Gun
I didn’t see this game because I was watching the Devil Dog semi so I can’t tell you anything about it other than the final score.
Final Score: Selects 4, Top Gun 2
Bronze Medal Game: Devil Dogs vs. Top Gun
Three of the four teams in the semifinals win a medal — gold, silver or bronze. One team — the loser of the bronze medal game — doesn’t.
Coming into this game, I was trying to figure out how to convince my kid, if his team lost, that even though they ended the tournament with two losses and came away with nothing, they still played a great tournament — better than all but three of the teams in the country.
As it turned out, I didn’t have to do that.
The Devil Dogs were quite a bit better than Top Gun and dominated the game. They were faster and stronger and got to every puck first.
My boy scored the last goal of the game. I’ve watched him play a lot of games and score a lot of goals over the last 12 years or so but he’s starting college in a few weeks and his future hockey plans are uncertain at this time. It may be the last goal he ever scores.
Final Score: Devil Dogs 6, Top Gun 0
Final: Choice Inline Selects vs. Tour Stealth
Both teams are strong defensively. The game was scoreless until midway through the second period. Stealth took a 1-0 lead and the Selects tied it 1-1 with 1:13 left in the game.
It looked like the game was headed for overtime when the top shooter from Stealth fired a perfect wrist shot into the top left corner of the net, past the best goalie in the division, to win the tournament with 1.1 seconds remaining.
Final Score: Stealth 2, Selects 1
My expectations for this Devil Dog team started out pretty low. They haven’t been a powerhouse team this season. The goaltending and discipline have been subpar at times.
They hadn’t won a tournament in a while even in local and regional events, so my hopes were not high for their ability to compete at the national level.
At the beginning of the tournament, my hope was that they would at least win a game.
When they won a game, I hoped that they would win another game. Then I hoped they would make the playoffs. Then I hoped they would make the semifinals and then I hoped that they would win a medal.
I just saw all the kids eating pizza in the lobby of the hotel here so I took the opportunity to tell them that they’re great players, they’ve got a lot of heart, and I’ve really enjoyed watching them play.
That’s it from Florida, where the weather’s been great except for the heat, humidity and thunderstorms.
Heading back home in the morning . . .