DULUTH, Minn. — No. 3 Minnesota-Duluth defeated No. 8 Harvard 6-1 in the 11th meeting between the two teams. UMD scored three first period goals to quickly put the game quickly out of reach for the Crimson.
Neither team scored on early power play opportunities, and it looked as if the 1,460 in attendance were in for another tough battle between the two longtime foes. However, when UMD (11-2) scored at 11:02 of the first the Bulldogs seemed to find a different gear.
Noemie Marin’s nifty backhanded rebound shot found the net to start the scoring for UMD. Just over four minutes later, Larissa Luther fed defender Suvi Vacker who skated in to the top of the right circle scoring the game winner with a wrist shot over Harvard goalie Ali Boe’s stick side.
Harvard (3-3-2) doubled its shots on goal in the second period but a post deflection was the closest the Crimson came to getting on the board. UMD’s swarming omni-present defense stifled every opportunity the Crimson had.
Though UMD scored six goals Harvard goalie Boe was singled out by Harvard coach Katey Stone as having one of the better performances by the Crimson players.
UMD’s top line players Noemie Marin and Michaela Lanzl joined forces to score four of the Bulldog goals. With exceptional speed and passing UMD had many odd-player rushes. Lanzl had an even strength breakaway goal in the third, and she teamed up with Marin for UMD’s final goal with the teammates streaking on opposite sides of the lone Crimson defender. Boe stopped the initial shot from Marin but Lanzl was there for the easy goal.
Perhaps the most gratifying goal for either side was Harvard’s lone goal with just 1:38 left in the game. Jennifer Raimondi put back a rebound from Liza Solley’s power play shot, and UMD goalie Riitta Schaublin’s right foot just missed the puck resulting in the 116th consecutive game in which Harvard has scored at least one goal.
“Our team did not quit,” Stone said. “I felt good about the way we responded after the first period. It could have gotten crazy had we not adjusted.”
Schaublin stopped 25 of 26 in the victory. She had not allowed a goal since Nov. 5 against North Dakota.
“We were aware of the streak and we were working hard to give Riitta the shutout,” said Bulldog captain Allison Lehrke. “One of our goals is to not get a penalty in the last five minutes of a period. Obviously we’re still working on that.”
This is the first non-conference game against ranked opponents for each team. Stone was impressed with UMD’s speed and depth but vowed to come out in tomorrow’s rematch with a more competitive game.