October 24, 2009

Women's Ice Hockey Falls, 3-2, To Niagara In Overtime

HAMDEN, Conn. - Forwards Janine Duffy (Toronto, Ontario) and Kelley Davies (Chesapeake, Va.) each scored their first goal of the season as the Quinnipiac University women's ice hockey team fell, 3-2, to Niagara University in overtime Friday night. Freshman goaltender Victoria Vigilanti (Woodbridge, Ontario) made 25 saves in net as the Bobcats' record drops to 2-2-1 on the season. The Purple Eagles' record improves to 2-3-2 on the year.

After a scoreless first period, the Bobcats came out firing in the second and opened up the scoring at the 9:05 mark on a power play opportunity. Freshman defender Regan Boulton (Brandon, Manitoba) ripped a shot from the center of the blue line that was tipped in by senior Janine Duffy (Toronto, Ontario), positioned just outside the crease. It was the first collegiate point for Boulton, and the first point of the year for Duffy. Freshman Brittany Lyons (Canton, Mass.) also recorded her first assist of the year on the play.

Less than thirty seconds later in the Niagara offensive end senior Frances McPhail took a shot that rebounded off Vigilanti's left pad back into play. Freshman Jenna Hendrikx picked up the loose puck to the left of the crease and poked it above a sprawling Vigilanti to tie the game at one.

The game was not tied for long as Quinnipiac responded 45 seconds later to earn the 2-1 lead. Positioned in the left corner, sophomore Stacey Kmill (Thunder Bay, Ontario) skipped a pass to senior Evelina Husar (Eskilstuna, Sweden) behind the goal. Husar dished a centering pass to Kelley Davies (Chesapeake, Va.) in the slot where Davies blasted a shot into the upper left corner for her first goal of the season. The assist was Husar's second of the year, and it was Kmill's first.

Niagara tied the game, 2-2, with less than two minutes to play in regulation on a power play opportunity. McPhail crossed to linemate Jennifer MacLean positioned just outside the left faceoff circle. MacLean turned into traffic in front of the net and lobbed the puck over the head of Vigilanti for her second goal of the season. Erica Owazarczak was also credited with an assist on the play that sent the game into overtime.

The Purple Eagles scored with 11 seconds remaining in the overtime period to earn the 3-2 victory over the Bobcats. MacLean snapped a pass from the center of the offensive zone to Leah Wittaker inside the left faceoff circle. Wittaker fired a shot over Vigilanti's stick for the goal and the overtime win for Niagara.

Vigilanti recorded 25 saves in the game for Quinnipiac, while her counterpart Jenni Bauer turned aside 17 for the win.

The Bobcats return to action tomorrow when they host the Purple Eagles in game two of the weekend series. The game is scheduled to start at 4 p.m. at the TD Bank Sports Center.