Chix sixth in league tourney

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So much for seeding.

The Chix with Stix, Steam-boat's top-level women's hockey team, overcame a last-place seeding to take sixth at the recent Women's Association of Colorado Hockey A League tournament held in Boulder.

The Chix had five games in two days and opened the tournament with two losses April 9.

But Steamboat won two straight April 10, defeating the Brewsers, 2-1, and rival Vail, 1-0. It was the first time in at least five years the Chix have defeated Vail, member Lee Cox said.

The Chix, after finishing third in their pool, played Synergy in the consolation game for fifth and sixth but lost, 3-0. It was their third game of the day.

That morning, Steamboat jumped out to an early lead against the Brewsers when Val Dietrich scored 10 seconds into the first period. The Brewsers added a goal three minutes later, leaving the score tied after one.

With just three minutes remaining in the second, Diane Dwire gave the Chix the lead off an assist from Riley Polumbus.

Neither team scored in the third, but the Chix had to fight off a penalty in the closing 47 seconds to preserve the one-goal victory. Steamboat goalie Carol Vittore stopped 16 of 17 shots she faced.

Steamboat carried the mo-mentum gained in the April 10 win into the next game against Vail, traditionally one of the better women's teams in the state.

Steamboat's Renee Dupre broke the scoreless tie with 1:53 left in the third period off assists from Polumbus and Dwire. Vail pulled its goalie in the final minutes but could not even the game.

At this point, the Chix were 2-2 in pool play, which was good enough for third place in the five-team pool. The third-place finish allowed the Chix to cross over and play the third-place finisher (Synergy) from the other pool.

Although Steamboat had 22 shots on goal against Synergy, it wasn't able to crack through and score. Vittore stopped 29 of the 32 shots she faced in the season finale.

On the opening day of the tournament, the Chix lost to the top-seeded Mavericks, a Front Range all-star team of sorts, 8-2.

Dupre knocked in both goals, and Dietrich got an assist on Dupre's second goal.

Steamboat then lost to Aspen, 5-2, in pool play. Dietrich scored the game's first goal, and Dupre got Steamboat's second goal. Dwire and Polumbus had the assists on Dupre's goal, which brought the Chix to within one.

Aspen got a power-play goal with 2:46 left in the third to give it a two-goal cushion and added an empty netter in the closing seconds to win by three.

-- To reach Melinda Mawdsley call 871-4208 or e-mail mmawdsley@steamboatpilot.com

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