The MBS girls ice hockey team captured a third straight NJSIAA State Championship at The Prudential in Newark on March 6 as they edged Pingry, 2-1, in dramatic fashion. When senior goalie Gracie Meyers ’23 had an issue with her skate just before the game started, freshman Hannah Mortazavi ’26 stepped into the spotlight and came up big — stopping nine shots and helping to kill a 5-on-3 penalty in the first period.
“I was definitely a little bit nervous, but I knew the team had my back and they’d be there to support me no matter what,” said Mortazavi, who played in eight games this year.
Meyers was walking from the locker room to the ice when her skate’s blade popped out of its fastenings and she couldn’t get it back in. Although the senior missed the first period of play, members of the New Jersey Devils’ and Toronto Maple Leafs’ equipment staff rushed to fix her skate in time for the second period.
“It was very scary. It was like, ‘oh no, what’s going to happen?’” said Meyers. I didn’t really know what to do; I had to have other people help me, which is kind of annoying because I feel like I want to fix everything myself. When I got back on the ice and I could skate again, it was like something clicked and I knew I was going to play well.”
Meyers stopped 15 of 16 shots in the game and kept Pingry off the scoreboard until there were just 8.6 seconds left to play. Morristown Beard (15-6-3) took the lead late in the second period as Lilli Warnock ’23 flicked a wrist shot past the goalie, igniting the Crimson Crazies in the student section.
“It’s really crazy,” said Warnock. “Just getting that goal and bringing that energy out onto the ice was amazing.”
Kailin Kane ‘24 scored off a feed from Jessica Sperling ’24 in the third period to give MBS the cushion that it needed to clinch its third straight state championship.
“I can’t say enough about a freshman goalie who steps in and plays as well as (Hannah Mortazavi) did in the first period,” said Head Coach Bruce Driver. “That game certainly could have gone the other way. Pingry put a lot of pressure on us. We talked about a lot of adjustments we had to make. We were good in spots and not so good in others. But our key players stepped up at the right time and scored key goals for us.”