2022-2023 Games 1 and 2 – EV Bolzano Eagles vs Silesian Katowice
(Approximately 3 min. read).
The Eagles got off to a successful start in the new season of the European Women’s Hockey League (EWHL). Last weekend, we celebrated two wins and five points against Silesian Katowice, the league’s Polish opponent. The local paper hilariously headlined us as “top of the table,” and published the standings with zero games played for the rest of the league’s teams.
We had home advantage twice and were able to capitalize on it. However, Poland was a formidable opponent and we had to battle back from deficit in both match ups. On Saturday a 2-1 win (0:1, 1:0, 0:0, 1:0) set the upper-hand for the weekend. The Eagles outshot the Poles two-fold (32:15). The first goal came for the Poles on the back of a broken Eagles’ forecheck. The result was a 3-on-2 rush twelve minutes into the game. With lots of time to shoot, the Polish player was able to find the back of the net.
Mid-second period Mia Campo Batagin equalized (22.57). A scoreless third was riddled with Eagles’ opportunities, but none managed to squeak in. In overtime, Mia and I exchanged the puck on a give-and-go drop pass to regroup just outside our defensive blueline. This caught the Polish defenders pushed back into their defensive zone and created time for me to skate in unimpeded. Thankfully, I found the back of the net and ended the game in our favor.
A few hours later, our two teams faced again (11:30 the next morning). The Eagles prevailed, this time celebrating a 3:2 win in regulation (1:1, 0:1, 2:0), earning the squad the full three points for the standings. The shots were again heavily weighted in the Eagles favor (38:19).
Poland once again found the back of the net first. During a powerplay, a rebound goal gave them a 1:0 lead. Shortly after the deficit was equalized to 1:1 with a dump-in from just across center ice that the Polish goalie wasn’t able to track.
In the second period, another Polish power-play was converted, this time scored by a shot on the rush. The Eagles were not content to test their luck in another overtime performance and pressed the Polish team all through the third.
Elenora Bonafini scored two in the final period, playing a critical role in the 3-2 victory. Using her decisive speed, ten minutes into the third period, she was able to edge the Polish defender and roof the puck, tying the game. A few minutes later, on an Eagles power-play, the puck moved from the right circle to Kika Stocker for a one timer shot from the blue line. Bona picked up the rebound and secured the victory.
We travel to Austria this upcoming Sunday to face Aisulu Almaty, the league’s team from Kazakstan.
I’m Jacquie and I’m an American hockey player living in Bolzano, Italy. I write about hockey, sustainability, and food.