CANTON, N.Y. — Union found itself tonight in the unenviable position within the crosshairs of a No. 2 St. Lawrence team looking to avenge its first defeat of the season last Friday against ECACHL and North Country rival Clarkson.
St. Lawrence (13-1-2, 4-1-2 ECACHL) didn’t waste any time getting on the board; it took just 79 seconds for frosh Carson Duggan to slip the puck goaltender Alex Zirbel of Union (2-9, 0-7). Duggan netted another tally in the second period, pushing her team leading goal total to thirteen.
The Saints were dominant throughout this affair, pelting the Dutchwomen goaltenders with 56 shots.
“I know they have been struggling to score goals, we just wanted to go out there and finish the semester on a strong note, after a disappointing loss,” said Saints coach Paul Flanagan.
The scoring was led by Duggan, Sabrina Harbec and Emilie Berlinguette who each scored two goals in the rout. Minnesota State transfer Kerri Wallace scored her first goal as a Saint, as did sophomore forward Julia Palmateer. The scoring was rounded out with goals from Crystal Connor and the first goal of the season for Elisabeth Pahler.
“When things like that happen its kind of neat to have the goals spread out. It’s good for the girls to get to cheer for Kerri, Elisabeth and Julia,” Flanagan said.
Other than the seeing-eyed shot from Wallace on a heavily screened Zirbel, all of the Saints goals were scored by the Dutchwomen’s failure to control the area in front of the crease where the rest of the Saint goals were scored from, on a variety of rebounds and backdoor plays.
The two-goal performance by senior forward Berlinguette was even more impressive as both of her goals came on shorthanded situations. These shorthanded tallies are the only two shorthanded goals scored by the Saints all season.
“It’s good for Em, she has gotten a lot of opportunities on the kill this season, and she has also been on a bit of a goal scoring slump,” Flanagan said of Berlinguette’s efforts. “We out skilled them tonight, we played four lines from the beginning and it was nice to get our third string goalie in there for the second half of the game.”
Although the score reflected the dominating nature of the Saints victory, Flanagan was quick to point out that his team still needs to improve a lot in certain areas, especially discipline: “We still need to play more intelligently and stay out of the box, we took seven penalties tonight, we need to learn to stay more disciplined and work on preventing penalties.”
The two sides will face off again tomorrow at Appleton Arena in a 4 p.m. start. With a victory tomorrow the Saints would wind up tied with Clarkson for the lead atop the ECACHL standings through eight league games.