The hardest choice in this ranking was who to put second and first. It was tough to pick one over the other, but in the end, Martyna Sass gets the two spot. Sass is a dominate goalie the likes of which Poland’s women team has never seen. To show her dominance, here are the goaltending leaders in the Slovak women’s league.
She leads the league in every statistical category and by a wide margin. She is easily the best goaltender in the league at 18-years-old. The rest of the league had 6 shutouts, while Sass had 7. She was too good for the league. She led in the league in save percentage by over 2 percent. This is part of why Popradské líšky, Sass’ club team, was able to capture the championship. This was Sass’ first season playing outside of Poland and proved that she needs some even tougher competition. She completely broke the Slovakian league. This year, she also spent time with Naprzod Janow’s Mens U16 team like she has done in previous seasons. Before moving to Slovakia, Sass had played for Naprzod Janow in the PLHK since she was fourteen.
Sass caught the attention of the national team at an early age being named Poland’s U18 starting goalie at 14-years-old in 2014-15. She earned the starting job on the senior team just a year later and gave a brilliant performance putting up a .933% save percentage and 1.83 goals against average in 5 games. This helped the Polish women’s team get promoted to Divison 1 Group B for the first time in team history. Sass was named the MVP of team Poland for the tournament. Sass’ play caught a lot of attention, and she was invited to IIHF training camps with former World Champions, and top camps in Finland. Since then Sass has not looked back and been the starting goalie for Poland at the last three World Championships, and at the Olympic Qualifiers. Her most impressive performance coming at this year’s World Championship where she put up a dazzling .930% save percentage in 5 games. She was once again named the MVP of team Poland for the third time in her career. In total, her trophy case is pretty full with three U18s bronze medals, three senior team Poland MVPs, 2 U18 best goaltender awards, and a D1B World Championship bronze medal.
Sass continues to get better at every tournament she plays at and no matter how the strong the competition is she always gives Poland a chance to win. Her ability to steal games for Poland will always put Poland in contention for gold medals. While she is number two on our list, there may be not a more important member of the Polish national team, men or women. Sass still has a long career ahead of her, but her professional status currently remains unknown. She may return to Slovakia, or try her hand at a stronger league. Wherever she plays there is one guarantee, Sass is a brick wall and will stop anything you throw at her.