Beltway traffic proved as challenging as Holton-Arms' opponent in the Maryland Scholastic Hockey League final last Friday.

Several players were held up in Beltway traffic and did not arrive until midway through the first period. By then, the Panthers were already two goals down and eventually lost to the Reston Raiders, 4-2.

"We only had two [starting] defenders and one first-line center, so we went into a defensive shell to hold on until we got more troops," Holton-Arms Coach Ned Hengerer said. "It hurts you when some of your better players are stuck in traffic for the first 10 minutes of the game."

Playing in its eighth consecutive MSHL championship game, Holton-Arms (5-4) tied the score at two behind goals from sophomore center Alli Ashburn and freshman forward Emily Tiernan.

Sophomore goaltender Julia Galeota, who entered the game in the second period, stopped 22 of 24 shots to keep the Panthers in the game.

"We were happy with the game," Hengerer said. "We were in it until the very end. They have a very good goaltender, and we just couldn't get it past her."

Wait Till Next Year

Landon and Georgetown Prep will have to wait another year to extend their rivalry. Both teams lost in the MSHL semifinals and avoided meeting for the third time in tomorrow's final.

There was a chance that Landon and Georgetown Prep could meet for the third time this season, in the MSHL finals this Friday. Both teams lost in the semifinals, however, and will have to wait until next year to renew the rivalry.

Playing first on Friday at the Laurel Ice Gardens, Landon was defeated by DeMatha, 3-1. Hamstrung by 18 minutes in the penalty box, Landon (14-7-1) did not score until the third period, when junior defender Stro Ashburn scored a short-handed goal.

Georgetown Prep took the ice after Landon's loss, hoping for a rematch with the Stags, rather than Landon. The Little Hoyas hoped for an opportunity to avenge a season-opening loss to DeMatha, but could not overcome an early two-goal deficit, and lost to Mount St. Joe, 4-1.

Junior defender Nikita Kashirsky scored the lone goal for the Little Hoyas.

"We felt like we could've won that game [against DeMatha] once we were a little more seasoned," Georgetown Prep Coach Brian Maloney said. "Sometimes the fear with a Landon-Prep game is that anything can happen because it's such an emotionally charged game. I think the team was more interested in playing DeMatha, but the focus was just to get by Mount St. Joe because they were the number one seed."