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Dragons' wins attributed to team effort over individuals

Senior Shane Stockwell evades defensemen and takes a wide shot at the goal. Photo by G. Ouzounian (click for larger version)
February 22, 2012 - The ice-Dragons entered their playoffs with a bang on Friday, Feb. 17 and Saturday, Feb. 18 with a pair of wins over Birmingham United 5-1, and Rochester United 3-2.

The standing will pit the Dragons against OAA rivals the Clarkston Wolves this Saturday for the OAA Playoff Championship. Head Coach Nick Field seemed calm about the game and simply said in the end there will be "one winner and one loser."

"It's a rivalry game and hopefully we'll come out on top," he said. "There's really no specific strategy for individual teams. We're familiar with them, they're a good team and we respect that. At the end of the day we just have to come out and play well."

In terms to what players to rely on or watch out for, Field said hockey, in particular, is a team sport that truly is more about the teams performance over any one person - even the goal tender. Offensively and defensively each line of players helps each other and when one line fails, the others have a much harder job.

The game against Birmingham United on Feb. 16 was a solid victory for the Dragons, but according to Field, the team did not go down without a fight.

"Overall we were good from start to finish, but they had some real push int he first period," he said. "They came on hard but in the end we were able to match it. That momentum carried over to Saturday in our game against Rochester United."

Top scorers for the game were seniors Joey Bono with two goals and Daniel Chapie with one. Despite this, Field reiterated that even the scores were often a team effort.

Still, the confidence level of the Dragons is soaring, and Field said Orion is feeling confident about Saturday's game.

The game will be held at the Birmingham Ice Area on E. Lincoln Street in Birmingham.

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