January 28, 2012

Women's Ice Hockey Defeated By Syracuse, 3-2

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HAMDEN, Conn. - The Quinnipiac women's ice hockey team was defeated by non-conference opponent Syracuse, 3-2, on Saturday afternoon at HighPoint Solutions Arena at the TD Bank Sports Center. With the loss, Quinnipiac falls to 15-10-2 overall, while Syracuse improves to 9-16-3.

Junior forwards Breann Frykas (East St. Paul, Manitoba) and Brittany Lyons (Canton, Mass.) each netted goals for Quinnipiac, but a third period tally by Syracuse's freshman forward Nicole Ferrara at the 11:22 mark into the final frame proved to be the difference in the game.

The Bobcats owned a substantial shot advantage in the game, outshooting the Orange 55-to-23, however sophomore netminder Kallie Billadeau stood on her head all afternoon, turning away a game-high 53 shots. Junior goaltender Victoria Vigilanti (Woodbridge, Ontario) started for Quinnipiac and made three saves on five shots. Freshman goalie Chelsea Laden (Lakeville, Minn.) stepped in to replace Vigilanti for the remainder of the game, turning away 17-of-18 shots while taking the loss, halting her four-game personal win streak.

The Bobcats were successful on 1-of-3 power-play opportunities, while Syracuse was 0-for-1 on its lone extra skater advantage.

Syracuse was the first team to find the back of the net, scoring a goal at the 13:40 mark into the first period of play. Sophomore forward Margot Scharfe skated where her quick shot was turned away by Vigilanti, but collected her own rebound before flipping in the goal to give the Orange the 1-0 lead.

Quinnipiac responded just over a minute later on Frykas' power-play goal, her seventh of the season. Junior defender Regan Boulton (Brandon, Manitoba) unloaded a shot on net which Billadeau was unable to handle. The rebound ricocheted directly to Frykas who backhanded in the opportunity past an out of position Billadeau.

Syracuse regained the lead, 2-1, towards the end of the first period on sophomore defender Caitlin Roach's second tally of the season. Roach fired a shot on net where senior forward Megan Skelly acted as a screen in front of Vigilanti. The junior goaltender was unable to locate the puck before it sailed into the goal, effectively ending her afternoon early, as she was immediately replaced by Laden. Senior defender Lisa Mullan and senior defender Taylor Metcalfe were each credited with an assist on the score.

The Bobcats came out fighting in the second period and re-tied the score at two-apiece early in the frame, as junior forward Brittany Lyons (Canton, Mass.) knocked in a rebound for her sixth goal of the season at the 6:40 mark. Senior captain Jordan Elkins (Wasilla, Alaska) rotated the puck to fellow senior defender Melissa Perry (Champion, Mich.) who then took a hard slap-shot towards the goal. Billadeau made the pad save, but the puck found its way to Lyons' stick where she lifted the puck into the back of the net. Perry earned her third assist of the year, while Elkins picked up her eighth helper of the season.

Ferrara notched the game-winner on a two-on-one break with fellow forward, junior Holly Carrie-Mattimoe at the 11:22 mark into the third period. The goal for Ferrara was her fourth of the season, while Carrie-Mattimoe and sophomore forward Morgot Scharfe each earned their seventh and 11th respective assists of the season.

The Bobcats return to ECAC Hockey action next weekend when they travel to play Harvard on Friday, Feb. 3 at 7 p.m. followed by a visit to Dartmouth on Saturday, Feb. 4 at 4 p.m.

Contact: Ross Bennett, rsbennett@quinnipiac.edu