Aspen Leafs youth hockey teams win championships over the weekend
Aspen’s U16 AA girls advance to Tier II Rocky Mountain District finals
The Aspen Leafs U16 AA girls hockey team defeated the Lady Roughriders Saturday in Denver in a best of three CAHA State Championship series. Aspen won the first two games 2-1 and 3-2.
With the win, the Leafs advance to the Rocky Mountain District finals in Dallas from March 14-16 where they will face the Dallas Stars in a best two of three series. The winner of the RMD Championship advances to the USA Hockey National Championship tournament from April 5-9 in Marlborough, Massachusetts.
In game one, Casey Chesner and Laney Martens scored in the first period, and goaltender Anika Anderson was brilliant in net stopping 29 shots for the 2-1 victory.
In game two, Chesner and Kristin Spang scored in the second period, and Andi Bierbaum tallied the game winner late in the third period. Goaltender Sammie Jaworski made 22 saves to secure the championship win for the Leafs.
Bantam boys win league championship
The Aspen Leafs U14 Bantam boys hockey team defeated the Glenwood Grizzlies 3-2 to claim the CDYHL Bantam A championship in Breckenridge on Sunday. Braden Haisfield scored the Leafs’ first goal just over six minutes into the first period for an early 1-0 lead. After giving up the next two goals, Fisher Scott tied the game before the end of the period.
After a scoreless second period, Scott netted the game winner early in the final stanza and the defense took over. Goaltender Zach Small finished with 23 saves as the Leafs outshot the Grizzlies 32-25.
In the semifinal game, Brooks Bond netted two goals along with Bo Melton and Scott, and the team skated to a 4-1 win over the Summit Lightning. Goaltender Brannon Bridger was solid in net stopping 23 shots to claim the victory.
The Leafs conclude their season March 16-18 in Denver competing in the CAHA State Championship tournament.
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Had Hailey Swirbul decided against going to Europe, she would not have finished with a career-best result in Friday’s World Cup opener. Yes, there was a time, and not long ago, when the U.S. ski team member and Roaring Fork Valley native questioned her desire to put on a race bib.