Sunday, October 24, 2010

Women's Hockey - at Providence & Northeastern (22/24 Oct)

RPI took to the road this weekend for a pair of games against tough Hockey East opponents in Providence and Northeastern, who had between them lost just two games out of twelve played. After a weak start Friday night in Providence, the Engineers fought back to a 3-2 overtime win, before being soundly outplayed in Boston Sunday afternoon against Northeastern in a 5-1 loss.

Providence

Smelker/Vandegrift/Horton
Dunlop/Harrison/O’Keefe
Sanders/Padmore/Jakubowski
Letuligasenoa/Guillemette/Mankey

Le Donne/Vadner
Castignetti/Daniels
Stapleton/Marzario

Van der Bliek

Providence came into Friday’s game riding a five-game winning streak, including a 5-0 win over Clarkson and a 6-1 win over St. Lawrence – both games in which the Friars were thoroughly outshot by their opponents. The Friars have received solid goaltending from Genevieve Lacasse, who surrendered just five goals in the five games leading up to Friday’s tilt. The game marked the first time RPI and Providence met in women’s hockey , though the schools’ men’s programs have a history with each other – RPI having defeated Providence to win the 1985 national championship.

The early game was all Providence, who outshot the Engineers 11-4, and Abby Gauthier poked home a rebound to give Providence a 1-0 lead just past the midpoint of the period. The Friars had the benefit of four power plays in the period as well, but the Engineer penalty kill held strong and kept Providence from notching any additional goals.

Providence made a move to build on their first period momentum when Kate Bacon scored on a 2-on-1 just 44 seconds into the second period, but RPI made a stronger showing in the period, notching 10 shots to six for Providence, but goals eluded the Engineer offense and the score remained 2-0 entering the second intermission.

The third period saw RPI get its opportunity to capitalize as Jordan Smelker fed a wide open Alisa Harrison for an easy goal at 0:44 of the third, and just 59 seconds later, Toni Sanders was in the right place at the right time as the puck popped out of a scrum in front of the net onto her stick for an easy goal to tie the game at 1:47. Kristen Jakubowski was awarded an assist on the play, which marked her first career point – a well-deserved reward as Jakubowski’s play has been much improved this season. The teams traded penalties through the rest of regulation, but the game headed for overtime tied at two.

At 2:12 of the extra frame, Taylor Horton and Jill Vandegrift broke in on a 2-on-1 and Vandegrift fed the puck to Horton who shot it off Lacasse and into the back of the net, giving RPI the first win in the series between the Engineers and Friars.

Northeastern

Smelker/Vandegrift/Horton
Dunlop/Harrison/O’Keefe
Sanders/Padmore/Jakubowski
Letuligasenoa/Guillemette/Mankey

Le Donne/Vadner
Castignetti/Daniels
Stapleton/Marzario

Van der Bliek (1st/2nd periods)
Ramelot (3rd period)

When RPI took the ice in Boston on Sunday, it looked as though the Engineers had given all they had on Friday and had nothing left in the tank. To be fair, Northeastern is an extremely skilled and fast team, which contributed to this appearance, but the Engineers lacked the crisp passing and strong penalty killing that had helped them compete in their several previous games.

Northeastern picked up an early lead on a goal from Casey Pickett which hit van der Bliek’s pads and tricked over the goal line in seeming slow motion. The Huskies would extend the lead to 2-0 late in the period when Katie Daniels was whistled for body checking after standing up a Northeastern forward at the blue line. Rachel Llanes redirected a shot by Julia Marty between van der Bliek’s pads to notch the goal.

The second period looked better for the Engineers despite several penalties, however a blatant dive by a Northeastern skater late in the period drew an RPI penalty and led to a Northeastern goal just nine seconds into the ensuing power play, making the score 3-0 with just 13 seconds left in the period.

Katie MacSorley made it 4-0 for the Huskies at 6:45 of the third when Claire Santostefano fed a perfect pass from behind the net to MacSorely who had an easy tap-in for the goal. Taylor Horton broke Northeastern’s shutout bid at 11:30 as she fired a shot from the point which deflected off a Northeastern defender, but the Engineers couldn’t build any momentum off the goal. Julia Marty gave the Huskies their fifth goal at 19:55 and sent the Engineers back to Troy with a 5-1 loss in the record books.

RPI opens ECAC play next weekend on the road at SLU and Clarkson. Both teams are off to surprisingly tough starts, with the Saints going 1-4-1 and the Golden Knights going 1-6-1 in the opening stretch. Clarkson has had particular trouble finding offense, being shutout three times already this season, while SLU has lost several close games in the recent going. If RPI can regroup from a tough loss against Northeastern, they could face the North Country trip at a prime time to sneak some points from a pair of teams who more than likely are going to see things turn around before we get too deep into the ECAC schedule. Clarkson and SLU can be expected to come out firing though, looking to put the early non-conference games behind them and set things straight in the games that matter.

Neither game will be broadcast by WRPI next weekend, however SLU and Clarkson both have pay-per-view video available through America One (formerly B2). Without a Peer will tweet updates during the games, but at limited intervals as online live stats will allow.

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RPI at Providence
Non-Conference Game – Schneider Arena (Providence, RI)
10/22/10 – 7:00pm
RPI 3, Providence 2 (OT)

BOX SCORES:
RECAPS:
RECORD: 1-3-2 (0-0-0 ECAC)

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RPI at Northeastern
Non-Conference Game – Matthews Arena (Boston, MA)
10/24/10 – 1:00pm
Northeastern 5, RPI 1

BOX SCORES:
RECAPS:
RECORD: 1-4-2 (0-0-0 ECAC)

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Upcoming Games

Oct. 29 – at SLU (7pm)
Oct. 30 – at Clarkson (4pm)
Nov. 5 – Princeton (7pm)
Nov. 6 – Quinnipiac (4pm)
Nov. 12 – at Yale (7pm)
Nov. 13 – at Brown (4pm)

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WOMEN’S HOCKEY

The Engineers went 1-1-0 last week, defeating Providence (3-2 OT) before losing at Northeastern (5-1). Sophomore Taylor Horton (St. Thomas, ON) had a goal in each contest, including the game-winner over the Friars. Rensselaer is back on the ice this weekend as it opens its ECAC Hockey schedule at North Country rivals St. Lawrence and Clarkson on Friday (7pm) and Saturday (4pm), respectively. Both games can be seen via pay-per-view at http://www.b2tv.com/partner_members.asp?id=27.

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