The Western New York Hockey Federation Playoffs are officially underway.
On the boys' side, the first two of four pre-quarterfinal matchups took place at the Northtown Center on Thursday. In the early game, 5th-seeded Kenmore East raced out to an early four-goal lead on 12-seed Amherst. Although the Tigers traded goals with the Bulldogs the rest of the way, Kenmore East held on for a convincing 6-2 victory.
In the late matchup, we had our first upset of the playoffs. North Tonawanda, the 11-seed in the playoff tournament, caught 6th-seeded West Seneca West with a surprise early goal and then controlled the game the rest of the way. North Tonawanda advances with a 4-1 win.
On Friday, the pre-quarterfinals continue as 7th-seeded West Seneca East takes on No. 10 Williamsville South at 6:00 pm. Then at 8:00 pm, No. 8 Lew-Port battles 9th-seeded Sweet Home. Both games will take place at the Northtowns Center.
As for the girls federation playoffs, only two teams remain.
Top-seeded Williamsville survived an overtime game against Amherst/Sweet Home/Clarence, winning 4-3 after Holly Schmelzer's game-winner. Orchard Park/Frontier/Lake Shore, the team that won the Section VI Championship this year, is going for the clean sweep of 2017 titles. Goaltender Maggie Spyche made 20 saves en route to a shutout win, as they defeat Monsignor Martin 2-0.
Williamsville will take on Orchard Park/Frontier/Lake Shore for the WNY Girls Hockey Federation Championship on February 26 at the HARBORCENTER.