Women’s Ice Hockey Can’t Find Consistency, Moves to 8-7-1 after Splitting Pair with Conn.
Issue   |   Tue, 01/29/2013 - 22:42
Niahlah Hope '15
Sophomore forward Tori Salmon netted the game-winner against Conn. College just 56 seconds into overtime to give the Lady Jeffs the 1-0 win.

The Amherst Women’s Hockey team split a pair of home games against Conn. College last weekend after wrapping up seven consecutive road games since Dec. 8. The Jeffs suffered a tough 1-0 loss to the Camels on Saturday evening but bounced back on Sunday with an exciting overtime victory. Amherst is now 8-7-1 on the season and 6-3-1 in the NESCAC league.

Amherst dominated possession on the ice Saturday night with a 37-18 shot advantage, but an impressive performance in net from Connecticut goalie Kelsie Fralick ’15 led to a Camel shut out. The game marked Amherst’s third consecutive loss and broke the Jeffs’ 15-game win streak over Conn. College.

Barrett McBride ’14 had the best chance to put the Jeffs ahead early in the first period on Saturday with a close-range backhand shot, but a save from Fralick kept the game scoreless heading into the first intermission.

The second period looked promising for the Jeffs with strong chances from Geneva Lloyd ’13, Madeline Tank ’15 and Tori Salmon ’15, but Fralick once again preserved the shutout with three strong saves. A late offensive surge from the Camels nearly put them ahead at the end of the period, but Kerri Stuart ’14 stopped the counterattack to keep the score tied at zero.

Six minutes into the final period Conn. sophomore Courtney Dumont scored on a hard, mid-range shot to give the Camels the coveted 1-0 lead. Amherst had a chance for a comeback on a power play late in the third, but they were unable to find the equalizer. The Jeffs pulled Stuart in the final minute for one last chance but two saves from Fralick kept the Camels on top, 1-0.
Amherst fired back on Sunday afternoon with a thrilling, 3-2 overtime victory over the Camels in Orr Rink. Salmon scored on a breakaway just 56 seconds into the extra frame to break the 2-2 tie and snap the Jeffs’ three-game losing streak.

Amherst controlled the game’s momentum early with a 10-1 shot advantage over Conn. in the first period, but the Camels capitalized on the missed chances with a goal from Dumont just 29 seconds into the second period. The Jeffs kept up the pressure, however, as Melissa Martin ’15 added a tally three minutes later with assists from Avery Stone ’14 and Eileen Harris ’16.

The 1-1 tie lasted for the next 30 minutes of play, leading to a dramatic end of the third period. Tank redirected a powerful shot from Lloyd to give the Jeffs a 2-1 advantage with just over four minutes remaining in regulation. Trailing by one with 90 seconds left to play, the Camels pulled Fralick after a timeout for the offensive advantage. Olivia Farrell ’14 then evened the score on a cross-ice pass to send the game into overtime.

Less than a minute into overtime Salmon retaliated with a breakaway goal, beating Fralick with a shot into the top left corner to give the Jeffs their sixth NESCAC victory of the season.

Last weekend’s games against Conn. College marked Amherst’s first home appearance since falling to Wesleyan, 4-2, on Dec. 5. The seven-game road trip included victories against tough non-conference opponents Oswego State and Utica and back-to-back victories against Colby. On Friday, Jan. 4 the Jeffs crushed the Mules, 10-1, in a memorable game for Lloyd, who became the seventh player in program history to hit the 100-career-point milestone with two goals and four assists on the night. Lloyd also earned NESCAC Player of the Week for her impressive six-point performance in Amherst’s highest scoring game since 2011.

The Jeffs finished up their away streak with an overtime tie and a loss against Middlebury and a close, one-goal loss to Norwich, who finished second in last season’s NCAA Championship.

This weekend, Amherst will take-on NESCAC rival Williams with games on Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday afternoon at 3 p.m.