With last week’s shocking revelation of Mami moving away in mind, Manaka had an idea on how to make their final days together special.

Let’s take a look!

Friends moving away is always tough. Been through that before and I’ve been that friend moving away as well, it’s not fun for either party. But as sad as Manaka is to learn her childhood friend is leaving her, she took the opportunity to make their remaining days together something they’ll always treasure, no matter how long they’re apart. And what better way to make memories than to play a game of hockey! That’s right, it’s time for their first game!

Manaka took the news pretty hard.

While they’ve only been on the Dream Monkeys for a few weeks and are just getting the basics down pat, Manaka wants to take things to the next step and play a real game against another team. It’s a big request but Coach Yoko is happy to see her girls are taking hockey seriously and want to play a game.  But before they get to that point, they need to decide which positions everyone will play.

Now we’re getting into some more details about hockey as Coach Yoko talks about each position and what that role is on the team. To summarize what she said: we have the goalie or goalkeeper, their job is to stop pucks from going into the net. Next are the two defense positions, left and right, they help defend the net and their side of the ice. In front of them are the forwards composed of the center, left and right wing positions. They’re in charge of most of the attacking and playing down in the opposing side’s ice along with scoring goals, not to say the defense can’t score, but the forwards usually are up there doing most of the work. Each position is very important and when everyone is playing their role they all contribute to the effectiveness of the team.

Back when I played in my school days the positions I played the most were forward and goalie. I liked playing goalie the most as I got to wear all the equipment and it looks and feels cool when doing so, and I was good at that position too. I could score goals as well and I enjoyed the rush of being up there making plays and in the center of the action, but being the goalie was so much fun.

For our girls here we have the following positions:

Goalie: Kao

Defense: Ayaka and Nao

Forwards: Riko (center), Manaka and Mami (wingers)

With the positions decided on, it’s now time to practice playing each position. They don’t have a lot of time to work with before Mami leaves and they play their first game, so they need to put in all the work to make sure they know their role in the game well. The middle half is mainly them practicing the getting ready for the game. We have a little off ice stuff but nothing really worth going into the detail to talk about.

The day finally arrives when Coach Yoko informs them they have an opponent to play against. Now it’s time to see all of that hard work and training put to use! The day arrives and the scrimmage game finally takes place. Right way it’s easy to tell this will be a very one sided affair. For starters, the other team has double the amount of players, meaning they could each rotate on and off, resting each skater instead of playing the whole game. As reference, a full sized team has a minimum of 20 players. 4 lines of 3 forwards, 3 lines of 2 defencemen, and 2 goalies. That right there is a huge disadvantage for the Dream Monkey Beginner Team as they’ll have to play the full 30 minutes of the scrimmage. A standard game consists of 3 20 minute periods for a total of 60 minutes, so this is just half of that.

As expected the game is a total blow out for the visitors, winning 9-1. But the moral victory was Manaka scoring the lone goal for the Dream Monkey Beginner Team. With their first game under their belts it was time to say goodbye to Mami. As expected it’s a sad moment with everyone at the train station to send her off, but I’m guessing we’ll see Mami once again in the future. They can’t write her out that early into the show, she’ll definitely make a return at some point. Manaka and Mami had a pretty emotional moment too, that just made this whole ending sequence that mush sadder.

And for a third time we end the ep with the long haired girl now arriving in town looking for a fresh start. I’m guessing next time we’ll get into her story, find out who she is, and why she’s here. Seems like all dark long haired girls in anime are super dramatic and this girl looks to follow that pattern. It’ll most likely take a little bit before she warms up to everyone but I’m sure she’ll end up being a solid addition to their team.

3 eps in and I’m loving this anime. I’ve said it many times already but having a hockey anime is just so great to see. This week was the most hockey centered ep so far and it was great to watch. Sure their first game didn’t go exactly as planned, but they’ve only just started their hockey journey.

How are you enjoying this anime so far? What were your thoughts about this week’s ep? Let me know in the comments below and I’ll be sure to get back to you!

As mentioned it looks like next time we’ll get introduced to this new girl and learn about her. Should be good!

Miss you already Mami.

That’s it for me, thanks for reading and I’ll see you back here next week!

As always, stay safe and healthy!