CANTON, N.Y. — Senior defensemen Colleen Coakley scored the winning goal at 8:34 of the third period to give St. Lawrence a 4-3 win over the Cornell Big Red in the first game of a best-of-three quarterfinal series at Appleton Arena.
The Saints came out with a jump and notched a goal just 52 seconds into the game. Lindsay Charlebois scored her second goal of the season with a slapshot from the point to put the Saints up 1-0.
Unfortunately for SLU, the Saints were not able to continue the scoring streak, despite outshooting the Big Red 14-9 in the first period.
The Big Red answered Charlebois’ goal as Brooke Bestwick tied the game just 3:46 in with a slapshot from the slot. The Big Red then took the lead with a power-play goal from Lindsay Murao at 8:33.
Jenel Bode finished off the Cornell scoring with 1:34 left in the period, giving the Big Red a 3-1 lead.
It didn’t take long for the Saints to respond, as they scored at 2:51 of the second. Gina Kingsbury perfected the end-to-end rush on a power play, as she picked up the puck behind the Saint net and carried it up the left side of the ice and into the Big Red zone. Kingsbury went straight to the net and wristed the puck up over Sandahl’s right shoulder, cutting the Big Red lead to 3-2.
The Saints scored another power-play goal on a 5-on-3 as Ricki-Lee Doyle buried a rebound, tying the game at 3-3 with just under eight minutes to go in the second.
The game winning goal came at 8:34 of the third period. Amanda Sargeant dropped the puck to Coakley, who ripped a slapshot from the point. Sandahl was not able to control the rebound and Coakley followed up her shot, placing the puck over Sandahl’s left shoulder and giving the Saints a 4-3 lead.
The Saints tightened up in the defensive zone in the third period, not allowing the Big Red a shot until 35 seconds left in the game. The Saints outshot the Big Red 12-1 in the third period and held off Cornell’s 6-on-5 for the last 44 seconds of regulation.
Rachel Barrie tallied 15 saves, with Sandahl stopping 38 for the Big Red. The Saints went two for six on the power play, while the Big Red were one for four.
These teams meet again on Saturday at 4 p.m. for game two of the series.