Women’s Hockey: Norwich Tops UMass-Boston While St. Mike’s and Castleton Suffer Defeats

Courtesy Norwich, St. Michael’s and Castleton Sports Information Offices

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NORTHFIELD –– Freshman forward Ann-Frederique Guay (St. Lambert-de-Lauzon, Quebec) scored twice to lead the Norwich University women’s ice hockey team to a 3-1 win over UMass Boston on Friday afternoon in New England Hockey Conference (NEHC) action at Kreitzberg Arena.

Norwich (18-4-2, 15-0-0 NEHC) extended its unbeaten streak to 49 straight games in NEHC action and swept the season series from the Beacons.

After a scoreless first period, Norwich took the lead on a shorthanded goal by Kelley Madden (Novelty, Ohio) for her ninth goal of the season. Madden took advantage of a UMass Boston player tripping to coast into the zone all alone. She skated in right down the middle and snapped a wrist shot off the right post and into the net to make it 1-0 Cadets just 33 seconds into the second period. Kayla Goleniak (Canton, Mich.) picked up the assist after chipping the puck out of the zone from behind the net.

UMass Boston responded with a shorthanded goal of its own on a pretty 2-on-1 rush from Katie Leffler and Kelsey Ryan. Ryan skated in from the left and fed a pass over to Leffler who was all alone with just Berg in the way. Leffler deked and beat Berg five-hole to tie the game at 1-1 at the 6:39 mark.

Norwich regained the lead just 1:28 later with Guay scoring a pretty goal on her back hand for her 11th goal of the season. Samantha Benoit (Bow, N.H.) and Ingrid Holstad-Berge (Stavanger, Norway) picked up the assists on the goal.

The Cadets added an insurance tally in the final minute of the game with Guay lifting the puck over the shoulder short side on Caty Flagg for her 12th goal of the year. Benoit picked up the assist after a pretty individual effort deking through three UMass Boston defenders.

Norwich outshot UMass Boston 40-25 in the game. Sophomore Alexa Berg (West Fargo, N.D.) made 24 saves to improve to 7-3-2 on the season.

Flagg made 37 saves to fall to 11-9-3 on the year.

Norwich will close out the regular season on Saturday at 1 p.m. when it hosts Johnson & Wales at Kreitzberg Arena. Prior to the game, Norwich will honor its seven seniors in a special pre-game ceremony for Senior Day.

SOUTH BURLINGTON — The Saint Michael’s College women’s ice hockey team fell to Sacred Heart University, 5-0, on Friday night at Cairns Arena in a New England Women’s Hockey Alliance (NEWHA) game.

Saint Michael’s (5-19-4, 4-14-1 NEWHA), Sacred Heart (20-10, 17-2 NEWHA)

· Senior Vika Simons (Essex Junction, Vt./Minnesota Duluth Club), 43 saves
· Senior Arianna Boscia (Cranston, R.I./La Salle Academy), 3 blocks
· First-year Maeghan Kennard (Hamlin, N.Y./Niagara Jr. Purple Eagles), 11 faceoff wins
· Junior Riley Nichols (Gilford, N.H./Tilton School), 7-for-12 faceoffs

· Sophomore Anna Klein, 3 goals
· Senior Jayne Lewis, 1 goal, 2 assists
· First-year Alexa Ocel, 2 assists
· Senior Maddie Bishop, 1 goal
· Sophomore Frankie Sanchez, 19 saves

· Simons broke Erin Stevens’ ’13 seven-year school record for saves in a season (924), finishing the night with 955 heading into Saturday’s regular-season finale.
· Simons has played 1,542:58 this season, besting another one of Stevens’ school records (1,513:16), set in 2011-12.
· This was Simons’ 13th 40-save game this season.
· The Pioneers have now won 12 games in a row, tied for the second-longest in NCAA Division I/II.
· Sacred Heart scored its final four goals during special-teams situations, with the first three on power plays and the last one shorthanded.

· With 3:02 gone in the first period, senior Victoria Grimmer received the puck in the slot and shot to the top right corner, but Simons used her blocker to steer the shot wide.
· The Pioneers scored with 15:00 down in the period when a loose puck went to the front of the Purple Knight net and Klein shot the puck past a sprawling Simons.
· Simons recorded her program-record 925th save of the season with 49.2 seconds remaining when a close-range shot by Grimmer was covered up by the goalie.
· The Pioneers scored a power-play goal 2:01 into the second period when Ocel passed from the right boards to the slot for Lewis, whose one-timer from between the circles went to the top left corner.
· Sacred Heart extended the lead 14:55 into the period on a power play when first-year Rachel DeLong had a backhand shot saved, but Bishop was there to hit in the rebound.
· The Purple Knights had a chance with 16:28 gone when junior Courtney Kelly (Arlington, Mass./Boston Jr. Shamrocks) passed to sophomore Jenna Harrison (Kitchener, Ontario/Wellesley) in the slot, but Sanchez saved Harrison’s bid with her right shoulder.
· The Pioneers scored a 6-on-4 delayed-penalty tally with 20 seconds left in the period when a shot by Klein hit the post, but the puck came right back to her for the rebound goal.
· Klein scored a shorthanded goal with 6:13 gone in the third period to complete her hat trick when Lewis started a 2-on-1 and passed to Klein on the weak side.

Saturday vs. Sacred Heart, 1 p.m.
The Purple Knights will honor their six seniors before the game.

RUTLAND — With the regular season winding down, the Castleton University women’s ice hockey team dropped a 2-1 New England Hockey Conference decision to Johnson & Wales Friday afternoon at Spartan Arena.

The Spartans (12-9-3, 9-4-2 NEHC) came out aggressive to start the game as the team registered 11 shots on goal in the first period. Despite the Wildcats (11-9-4, 8-4-3) producing their own pressure, Erin Smith opened up the scoring for the Spartans at the 17:50 mark of the period.

With the Spartans’ power play expiring, Samantha Munroe sent an initial shot from the blue line that was tipped in front of the goal by Darby Palisi. With goaltender Jasmine Mucci leaning the wrong way, Smith charged in from the weak side and scored her first career goal to give the Spartans a 1-0 lead.

The Wildcats showed resiliency in today’s contest as Hannah Tracy scored to at the 16:11 mark of the second period to tie the game up at two. With the Wildcats winning the faceoff to the right of goaltender Alexis Kalm, Cassie Wakefield collected the puck behind the Spartans’ goal and threw it out in front. As a scrum occurred in front of the goal, Kalm made an initial save before Hannah Tracy slotted in the rebound.

The Wildcats added a second goal at the 10:58 mark of the third period. Wakefield once again was involved in the play as she collected the puck near the far boards. She threw a pass to the top of the blue line and Cassidy Simanski, collecting the puck a few steps inside the blue line, slapped a shot that beat Kalm to give the Wildcats a 2-1 lead.

The Spartans were unable to find an answer late in the third period despite some quality chances.

Despite the loss, the Spartans still control their own destiny in wrapping up the second seed in the NEHC playoffs. To earn the No. 2 seed in the upcoming playoffs, the Spartans need to take care of business and defeat Salem State in tomorrow’s regular-season finale. The Wildcats are currently one point behind the Spartans and will need to defeat No. 6 Norwich and need the Spartans to lose in order to earn the second seed.

Women’s ice hockey returns to action tomorrow, Saturday, February 15 as it takes on Salem State at 1 p.m. Kalm, Smith, Munroe, Maeghan Vasile, Nicolle Trivino, and Sophia Vingi will all be honored as the six seniors will compete in their final regular-season home game.