Rough Start to the New Year for Washtenaw United
Washtenaw United Girls’ HS hockey returned to the ice after the winter break on Jan. 11, dropping a league game to cross-town rival Skyline-Huron (Skyron) 8-0. Skyron opened the scoring 5 minutes into the game, with Julianna Heung scoring the goal. Khaleela Hodge would follow just over 2 minutes later with the first of her 3 goals in a row. Hodge would finish the game with 3 goals and 3 assists. Star of the game for the United was Trista Tracy (Chelsea, ‘25), who turned aside 42 Skyron shots on goal. Lilly Schlack (Saline, ‘26) led the United in shots on goal.
Before Sunday’s game, the United attended the Grand Valley-Marysville (Missouri) Women’s College Hockey Game in Georgetown, MI Saturday afternoon. The United learned about post-High School hockey and academic opportunities from Grand Valley coach Ally Kennedy. This is the second time this season the team has been hosted by a local college to learn more about post-high school opportunities. The team traveled to Adrian on January 7th to watch United Alum Jillian Eggleston skate against Bowling Green, and take in a campus tour hosted by Adrian Coach Maddy Maloney.
Sunday’s game against the Grand Rapids Griffins 19U team was a much more competitive game. Grand Rapids got on the board first, scoring 2 goals 45 seconds apart late in the first period. The United came out strong in the second period, but Grand Rapids added their third goal at the 7:37 mark of the second. The United would control the majority of the second half of the game thanks to penalties taken by Grand Rapids. Washtenaw failed to score on 3 power play opportunities late in the 2nd period, including a 5-3 chance. Kathryn Winters (Saline, ‘23) would get the United on the board with 9:29 to go in the third period, knocking in a loose puck in front of the net. Picking up assists were Nora Stevenson (Saline, ‘25) and Raegan Kopitsch (Dexter, ‘24). Winters would add her second goal of the night less than 4 minutes later off of a breakaway, putting a backhand over the Grand Rapids goaltender. Julia Berkholz (Dexter, 24) would pick up an assist.
Washtenaw had 2 more power play opportunities late in the 3rd period, but could not convert. The difference proved to be power play efficiency, with Grand Rapids finishing 2 for 4 and the United 0 for 6. United Goaltender Tracy continued her strong play in net, turning aside 28 shots.
The United are currently in 3rd place in the Western Conference of the first Division of the Michigan Girls’ High School Hockey League. The team will return to play on Friday, January 20th against Walled Lake as part of the Mid-Michigan Showcase in Bay City this upcoming weekend. The United will face Mercy on Saturday, and a team to be determined on Sunday, depending on showcase standings.
INFORMATIONAL ADDENDUM: Washtenaw United is a High School Girls’ Hockey Team skating out of the Ann Arbor Ice Cube. The team serves High Schools within Washtenaw County that do not have a dedicated team to play for. Currently, Pioneer and the combined Skyline-Huron have dedicated teams. Washtenaw United is made up of players from Saline, Dexter, Chelsea, Manchester, Milan and private schools within the county. The team is in its third year of play.
Photo: The team visits Adrian College. Courtesy of Washtenaw United