Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Hammered at both ends

Do you know how long I've been waiting for a drop-in where I was super busy all night so I could use that title?

First half of drop-in, the white team took it to me. Then Jason and I switched ends and the white team was getting a little tired so the dark team took it to me.

It. Was. Awesome.

I felt like myself again. Which, I guess for most goalies would be like, "OMG WHAT HAPPENED TO MY GAME?" but for me, you know, at some point you just accept where you're at as an "athlete" and keep chugging along, warts and all.

If anything was extra good tonight, I felt like I was seeing the puck really well, unless there was a big butt in my face, which didn't really happen too often. Both teams played quite well defensively, which always makes it more fun for me. And my timing was back, which was nice.

If anything was extra bad, I didn't get to work on my Anti-Captain-Meaniepants strategy because my defense was so good, I never really saw an unabated breakaway of the type she throws at me. I was able to play most shots without having to scramble and they were basically just taking shots and not doing too much fancy pants dekey shit.

I guess that's my issue.... when to abandon the butterfly and say fuck it, just get something in front of it. I cling to the butterfly like I'm gonna get a bullet in the head if I scramble. And by the time I realize I should have scrambled, the puck is in the net.

That decision point RIGHT THERE is where I fall apart. And I just don't know how to fix it. Because it truly is about that decision, isn't it? It's not about the skill. I can throw a pad stack or a poke check (okay, actually I suck at poke checking), but making the decision to do it is where I hit a wall mentally.

My little goalie brain is going, "FORM FORM!!! STAY UP! STAY SQUARE! DON'T GET OUT OF POSITION! DON'T GET VULNERABLE!!!" (I feel I should add that I'm not LITERALLY thinking this... it's just what my instincts tell my body to do.) Short of tackling a la Tim Thomas, which I am not opposed to doing if I didn't think she'd just put it between my skates as I lunge at her, I just don't know how to break that wall down.

What's even more amazing to me is that the goalies I love are all masters of that whole Butterfly Abandonment Decision. Why haven't I picked some of that up from them, even just through sheer mimicry? I must have issues. ;)

Oh well. Might do a skate Wednesday evening since I don't have women's league tomorrow. We'll see if they need a tendy. Meanwhile, I'm glad I don't skate tomorrow. I got my tushie worked off tonight and had some pretty good lead-legs on a couple of shots I took after the game. Gonna be sore tomorrow. I've missed that.

3 comments:

maalivahti  January 25, 2011 at 10:28 AM  

AWESOME! I told you it'd come back. :p Excellent post title as well. Wish I had some pointers for you on the mental block. I have really found myself just reacting lately and not even being aware of making that decision, but I couldn't tell you what caused that. Might be experience. Just keep plugging along and trust your goalie-brain!

Anonymous  January 25, 2011 at 12:14 PM  

YAY!! I'm glad your sore from being hammered at both ends! Makes it a great night doesnt it?
Glad to hear your getting your groove back, and remember that
if you would stop over thinking it, just allow your body to react and do what it knows needs to be done, it really is easy. You just have to keep something, anything between the net and the puck at all times.

Moose

Ms. Conduct  January 25, 2011 at 12:16 PM  

*forehead slap*

Why didn't I think of that?!

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