Women’s D-III Picks Nov. 29-Dec. 1

Saturday Nov. 30, Sunday Dec.1

Cardinal-Panther Classic

Prestigious as it may be, the Cardinal-Panther Classic will be further enhanced by a matchup between the top two teams in Division-III hockey. No. 1 Plattsburgh (8-0-0) and Middlebury at 4-0-0 will highlight their long-standing rivalry on the second day of play. Elmira and Amherst close out the outstanding field that could very well be a preview of post-season play. Defensively, Middlebury’s Annabelle Jones and Plattsburgh’s Sydney Aveson currently rank first and fourth in the nation in goals against average. Add in Elmira’s Lisa Marshall and Kerri Stewart of Amherst and the starting goaltenders in the Classic are a combined 15-1-1 and a collective GAA under 1.00. Not to be outdone by the defensive aspect of the game, the Classic will offer up a prime opportunity for snipers like Plattsburgh forwards Shannon Stewart (8 goals) and Jenny Kistner (7 goals) to shine. A year ago the Cardinals came into the weekend ranked No. 1 while Elmira was No. 4 and the Panthers a slot behind in the USCHO poll. Middlebury took out Elmira 4-3 in overtime but fell to Plattsburgh in a 3-2 thriller.


Plattsburgh vs. Amherst

The Lady Jeffs, hovering just outside the top ten, were hammered by an 8-3 final a year ago by the Cardinals. Plattsburgh brings numbers that are off the charts to the Classic. Plattsburgh 6, Amherst 1

Elmira vs. Middlebury

Junior defenseman Kate Moreau and Carly Watson can move the puck smoothly from the Panthers end, adding a different dimension to the Middlebury offensive efforts that is spread throughout the roster. The advantage of playing at Kenyon Arena adds to the edge. Middlebury 3, Elmira 2


Elmira vs. Amherst

Ashley Ryan came into the weekend with a seven game point streak for the Soaring Eagles. Elmira’s specialty teams have a slight edge on their opponents in this one. Elmira 4, Amherst 2

Plattsburgh vs. Middlebury

In a game overflowing with talent and bolstered by eye-popping statistics on both sides, the expectation of a tightly played is well within the realm of possibility. Defense will shine in this one. Plattsburgh 2, Middlebury 1


Saturday Nov. 30, Sunday Dec. 1

Buffalo State at Utica

One of a handful of conference games on the docket this week heads to Utica Memorial Auditorium where Buffalo State is looking for its initial victory of the season. It’s been a tough go for first year Bengals head coach Candice Moxley whose club has been out shot 319 to 119 over the course of seven games. Freshman forward Nikki Kirchberger who has registered five of the nine Bengals goals is indeed an offensive prospect but she has been in the penalty box for a team high 27 minutes. The Pioneers have spread out the scoring team wide as nine different goal scorers have made their presence known. Utica goalie Jennifer Hamel having played every minute for her club could get an opportunity a night off if the Pioneers happen to be decisive in the opener. Utica 5, Buffalo 0, Utica 6, Buffalo 1

Non-Conference Saturday Nov. 30

Bowdoin at Holy Cross

Being on the wrong side of a pair of upsets at the outset of the schedule should have little impact on the Polar Bears once they get back on track. Bowdoin’s specialty teams have been effective and that alone should make the trip to Hart Center an interesting one. The Crusaders took their first defeat on home ice against St. Anselm last week. Bowdoin and Holy Cross have a common opponent as both have tangled with Massachusetts-Boston. Each team has come away with a one-goal victory. Bowdoin 3, Holy Cross 3