Gophers continue to vex Badgers
No. 2 Minnesota found itself in the unfamiliar role of underdog as it traveled to Madison to meet No. 1 Wisconsin. The rest of the weekend followed recent tradition: the Gophers came home with vastly different victories, 4-1 and 2-1.
On Friday, the Badgers received a reminder of the intensity that a top-ranked team can expect from its opponent. Hannah Brandt set the tone early on the penalty kill, capitalizing on a Wisconsin fumble at the point and scoring low to the glove side on the resulting breakaway. Karley Sylvester tied the game at one just after that power play ended, but Dani Cameranesi wrested control back for the visitors 70 seconds later, taking advantage of an ill-timed line change and picking a corner high on the glove side. Cameranesi netted the rebound of her own power-play deflection in the last second of the opening period, and she completed the scoring and her pure hat trick with 40 seconds to go in the middle frame by steering a cross-crease feed behind the goalie.
Wisconsin took its only lead of the series when Sarah Nurse buried a rebound during a second-period power play on Saturday. Ann-Renée Desbiens did her best to make that lead stand up, finishing with 33 saves, but Rachael Bona sniped the top corner on Desbiens’ blocker side on a power play with 88 seconds left in regulation. The Badgers nearly overcame the heroics of Amanda Leveille, who made 40 stops for the Gophers, when Sydney McKibbon hit a pipe in overtime, but Rachel Ramsey picked off a Wisconsin pass at neutral ice and finished off a three-way effort with Brandt and Cameranesi.
Terriers sweep Golden Knights
In another top-10 battle, No. 6 Boston University swept defending champion and No. 7 Clarkson, 3-1 and 5-2, in Potsdam. The Terriers got goals from Dakota Woodworth, Marie-Philip Poulin, and Sarah Lefort, while only Erin Ambrose could counter for the hosts on Friday. Victoria Hanson got the win by making 19 saves.
In Saturday’s rematch, Poulin scored 50 seconds in, Rebecca Leslie doubled the lead three minutes later, and Victoria Bach made it 3-0 by intermission. The Golden Knights could only trade goals the rest of the way, with Poulin’s second of the day into an empty net sealing the win.
End of perfection
Bemidji State, along with Wisconsin, entered the weekend with perfect records, but the Beavers also found themselves on the wrong end of a sweep. Summer Thibodeau scored the first goal of the series halfway through the first period at Ohio State, but BSU’s offense disappeared thereafter. Julia McKinnon had a hat trick and Kendall Curtis netted a pair of goals for the Buckeyes in a 5-1 victory on Friday. Danielle Gagne scored the game’s only goal on Saturday, and that was all OSU needed thanks to a 15-save shutout from Kassidy Sauve.
It’s common in sports to say that a team can beat anybody, or conversely, can’t beat anyone. Syracuse is out to prove that it can tie anyone. The Orange made it four straight ties versus four different Hockey East opponents.
On Saturday, they skated to a 3-3 tie with Providence. Like serves in a tennis tiebreaker, the visiting Friars scored once, the Orange responded with two goals, Providence netted two, and Syracuse got the equalizer. The top line for the Orange carried the scoring load; Melissa Piacentini scored twice, Allie LaCombe scored and assisted, and Jessica Sibley helped on all three. Cassidy Carels, Lexi Romanchuk, and Beth Hanrahan became the first Friars to find the net on the season.
Syracuse scored the first and last goals in a 2-2 tie with Connecticut on Sunday that delivered a little more drama. The Orange outshot UConn, 14-1, in the third stanza as they sought the tying goal, which finally came from Sibley with an extra attacker on the ice and one second left. They continued to dominate that shot chart in OT at a five-to-zero clip, but they couldn’t get a third puck by Annie Belanger, who finished with 37 saves.
How the rest of the top 10 fared
No. 8 Mercyhurst salvaged a split with visiting Northeastern. Three points by Kendall Coyne, a goal and an assist for freshman defenseman Ainsley MacMillan, as well as goals from Lauren Kelly and Paige Savage supported a 26-save shutout for Chloé Desjardins in Friday’s 4-0 victory for the Huskies. On Saturday, the Lakers twice took leads only to have Northeastern answer, but when Jaclyn Arbour put Mercyhurst ahead, 3-2, with under five minutes to go, the Huskies could not respond. Emily Janiga added an empty-net goal for the final 4-2 margin. Kelly scored her second goal in as many days for the guests.
Offense was at a premium as No. 10 North Dakota hosted Minnesota-Duluth. The Bulldogs scored the first goal both days. UND goaltender Shelby Amsley-Benzie came far out of her net to play the puck in Friday’s second period and was wiped out by an attacker; Jenna McParland took advantage and hit the open goal. Samantha Hanson evened the score in the third period, and with the teams skating four on four in OT, Sam LaShomb won a battle for position in front of the net and banged in a centering feed by Becca Kohler for a 2-1 win. Meghan Huertas’ power-play goal with seven minutes remaining was the only tally in the Bulldogs’ 1-0 triumph on Saturday. Beyond that, the goaltenders had the best of it. Amsley-Benzie made 56 saves in the series, and UMD’s Kayla Black had 47, including 16 in her shutout.
Alex Carpenter and Lexi Bender each had a goal and an assist, and Katie Burt made 21 saves to record her first shutout as No. 4 Boston College blanked New Hampshire, 4-0.
No. 9 Quinnipiac dominated Maine territorially, if not on the scoreboard, in sweeping the Black Bears, 4-0 and 2-0. Chelsea Laden has four starts, all shutouts, but has only needed to make 39 saves total for the season and just seven on Saturday. Rookie Taylar Cianfarano had a three-goal weekend.
No. 5 Cornell is poised to kick off its season Friday at BC, while outside of an exhibition game, No. 4 Harvard is waiting for Halloween.
RIT split a couple of low-scoring affairs at Vermont, dropping a 2-1 decision on Saturday, and then bouncing back with a 2-0 win as Ali Binnington made 27 saves.
Colgate split a pair of 2-1 verdicts, falling to Connecticut before defeating Providence. Emily Snodgrass had both goals in the Huskies’ win and totaled three tallies for the weekend.
St. Lawrence added to the woes of Robert Morris, beating the Colonials by 8-2 and 3-1 margins. Six Saints had multi-point games in the opener, led by Jenna Marks with three points, and Kirsten Padalis had a three-point effort of her own in game two.
Penn State got the best of a series at Union, winning by a 4-1 count Friday and earning a 2-2 tie Saturday. Amy Petersen scored in both games for the Nittany Lions.
Two points from Haley Breedlove helped New Hampshire to a 2-1 victory over Rensselaer.
St. Cloud State took the road half of a home-and-home series from Minnesota State, 5-1, and followed it with a shootout win after a 1-1 tie. Audrey Hanmer scored twice in a 54-shot barrage in the opener, and short-handed markers by Natalie Stoltz of the Mavericks and Molly Illikainen offset in the tie.