Penobscot Pioneers make statement with 12-0 debut win

Published: Nov. 26, 2022 at 12:30 AM EST
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BREWER, Maine (WABI) - Merriam Webster defines a “Pioneer” as “a person or group that originates or helps open up a new line of thought, activity or method.”

It’s safe to say the Penobscot Pioneers local co-op girls hockey program are living up to the billing.

Consisting of seven local schools, the team is the only girls program north of Winslow.

It didn’t take long for the Pioneers to make a good first impression, taking down the Greely Rangers 12-0.

“It says that even though it’s our first year, we can still compete with everyone else in the state, and that we can go pretty far,” captain Emma McNeil, a junior at Bangor High School, said.

Head Coach Michael Keim kept the pre-game message simple for the program’s debut.

“I said, ‘Let’s make history. Let’s go in there with a bang, and get two wins for Varsity and JV.’”

“We just knew we wanted to go out there and score,” McNeil said.

There wasn’t an empty seat at a jam-packed Penobscot Ice Arena, and the girls made sure they sent their supporters home happy.

“I think the fans being here was awesome,” assistant captain Meghan Delahanty, a junior at Hampden Academy, said. “It brought a lot of energy to the rink, brought a lot of energy to us in the locker room, and out on the ice. I think it helped us succeed a lot.”

“Today was a really big community event,” Keim said. “We had two to three sets of bleachers that were filled, we had a blend of young women, older men and women just here supporting the team. It was just a great day for the community.”

Delahanty scored a hat trick, Abby Derosier notched a shutout, and 11 Pioneers got on the scoresheet in a total team effort.

“We had a lot of firsts today,” Keim said. “These ladies are proud with everybody. They’re all great teammates and great people.”

The Pioneers’ next game is Saturday, Dec. 3, in Gorham.