Feb. 21, 2009
PROVIDENCE, R.I. - Women's hockey traveled to Boston to finish the regular season against the Eagles, ranked No. 6 in the country, and came away with an all-important 1-0 shootout victory. The game ended in a 1-1 tie with senior Erin Normore (Cambridge, Ont.) scoring for Providence while Genevieve Lacasse (Scarborough, Ont.) made 22 saves, not including all three in the shootout. With the road victory, the Friars are still in the running for a quarterfinal home game in the Hockey East Tournament. PC now stands at 17-15-2 (12-8-1 HE)
The Friars came into today's action looking to reach the 17 win mark for the first time in three season and needed extra time and more to improve over last season's 16 wins.
The action kicked off just 20 seconds after the opening faceoff when Lacasse came up with her first big save of the night on a shot from just outside the crease. Providence would earn a five-on-three advantage for 1:17 at 3:50 but shots from Laura Veharanta (La Verne, Calif.) and Jen Friedman (San Gabriel, Calif.) were saved by Eagles netminder Molly Schaus. BC would score the opener at 7:34 when Kelli Stack skated across the slot before lifting a wrister over a sprawled Lacasse.
The two teams exchanged penalties throughout the rest of the first period in a tightly officiated contest but neither team was able to score on their respective power-plays. At the end of one period, with BC up, 1-0, Lacasse stopped nine shots while Schaus was credited with 13 saves.
Coming out for the second period, PC successfully killed a penalty carried over from the end of the first and started to attack the BC zone. Another PC penalty thwarted any hopes of a steady attack and the Friars successfully killed their fourth penalty of the contest. Providence nearly evened the score at 9:12 of the second when Alyse Ruff (Tualatin, Ore.) muscled her way from behind the BC cage into position on the right post but her backhanded attempt was denied by Schaus as BC remained on top, 1-0.
The Friars would continue to pressure BC and evened the score at 17:20 when Leigh Riley (Lexington, Mass.) took a shot from the point that Normore tipped just under the right pad of Schaus for her ninth tally of the season. Ruff earned an assist on the play as well, her 10th of the year. Riley earned her third helper on the play.
Lacasse was called into action a mere five times in the second as PC outshot the Eagles, 10-5, to go into the locker room with the overall edge, 23-15.
BC looked to take the lead during another power-play attempt at 3:15 but a shot from the left side was denied with a blocker save from Lacasse. Once again, the two teams exchanged penalties with neither team able to generate many quality chances as PC failed to capitalize on a five-minute major penalty on the Eagles.
After 60 minutes of action, Providence held the edge in shots, 30-22.
Boston College would have the first chance in over time after a PC turnover in the defensive zone allowed Allie Thunstrom to come in all alone on Lacasse. Thunstrom deked and went to her back hand but Lacasse's right shoulder kept the game alive. The Friars couldn't generate any quality chances in the extra session sending the game into a shootout.
The Friars were 0-1 in shootouts this season before today's victory, having fallen at BU, 3-2, on Nov. 1. Ashley Cottrell (Sterling Heights, Mich.) shot first for PC and lifted a back hand over the right pad of Schaus to take a quick 1-0 lead. The one goal lead is all Lacasse would need as she denied all three BC shots to earn the crucial Hockey East victory.
For the game, Lacasse denied 22 shots as she improves to 14-10-1 (11-5-0 HE).
Providence will have to wait until Sunday night to learn of its post season fate. With weekend sweeps by UNH over UConn and Northeastern over Boston University, Providence will earn the third seed and face off against sixth seeded Northeastern. With a UNH sweep and BU victory over Northeastern, the Friars will earn the four seed and host fifth seeded Connecticut.
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