The Penobscot Pioneers, the first-ever high school girls ice hockey team from the Bangor area, won their debut game on Nov. 25, 2022, against Greely/Gray-New Gloucester in a breakaway 12-0 upset. Credit: Courtesy of Dave Utterback

The Penobscot Pioneers have already amassed a long list of accomplishments in their first season of existence.

The high school girls cooperative hockey team — comprised of players from Bangor High School, Brewer, Hampden Academy, John Bapst of Bangor, Old Town, Orono and Hermon — has won 15 games, including its first ever playoff victory.

That has landed the 15-3-1 Pioneers in Wednesday’s 5 p.m. Class A North championship game against 16-2-1 Yarmouth-Freeport at the William B. Troubh Ice Arena in Portland.

One of the few things the second-seeded Pioneers haven’t accomplished is beating the top-seeded Clippers this season.

The Clippers beat the Pioneers 2-1 on Dec. 10 before the teams skated to a 4-4 overtime tie on Jan. 7.

penobscot pioneers’ playoff success

The Pioneers advanced to the final with a 6-3 semifinal win over the Winslow area cooperative team while the Clippers topped Brunswick 5-1.

“We’re excited. We’re ready to finally beat them,” said Pioneers sophomore center and leading scorer Jordin Williams, whose team hasn’t lost since Dec. 27 and is 12-0-1 over its last 13 games.

Williams said in order to win, they are going to have to “play like a team, like we did against Winslow.”

Jarrod Williams, Jordin’s father and the interim head coach of the Pioneers after Michael Keim stepped down at the end of the regular season, said it will be a battle of two evenly matched teams.

“They control the puck real well and they have the deepest team in the state,” said Jarrod Williams, who added that the Clippers will have a size advantage and are well coached. “If we stick to the game plan and stay focused, we will have a good shot. We’re going to have to outwork them and use our speed to our advantage.”

The Pioneers’ offensive catalysts have been Brewer’s Jordin Williams (30 goals, 25 assists), Bangor’s Emma McNeil (31 goals, 17 assists) and Hampden Academy’s Meghan Delahanty (17 & 16) and Paige Oakes (15 & 16).

Penobscot Pioneers’ inaugural season

Swift-skating Anna Molloy (7 & 10) from Orono and Bella Saucier (2 & 6) from Hampden Academy have been the stalwarts on defense in front of Orono freshman goalie Abbie Derosier (6-2-1, 1.97 goals-against average, .865 save percentage).

The Clippers have been paced by Rosie Panenka (17 & 17),  Sophie Smith (23 & 10), Adelaide Strout (11 & 10), Emma White (7 & 12), Amanda Panciocco (3 & 15), Isabel Peters (8 & 8) and goalie Ava Gervais (15-2-1, 2.25, .864).

The winner will play in Saturday’s state championship game against the survivor of the 7 p.m. South A final between 16-3 Cheverus/Old Orchard Beach/Kennebunk/Windham and 13-6 Gorham/Bonny Eagle/Massabesic/Westbrook/Fryeburg/Lake Region.

Saturday’s state title game will also be played at the Troubh Ice Arena with a 3 p.m. faceoff.