February 10, 2012

Late St. Lawrence Goal Spoils Women's Ice Hockey Comeback; Defeats Bobcats, 4-3

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HAMDEN, Conn. – The Quinnipiac women's ice hockey team stormed back with three third period goals, two by junior forward Breann Frykas (East St. Paul, Manitoba) and another by junior defender Regan Boulton (Brandon, Manitoba), but two late scores by St. Lawrence spoiled the comeback attempt, as the Saints defeated the Bobcats, 4-3, on Friday evening at HighPoint Solutions Arena at the TD Bank Sports Center. With the loss, Quinnipiac falls to 10-7-2 in ECAC Hockey action (15-13-2 overall), while St. Lawrence improves to 12-5-2 in ECAC Hockey and 18-8-4 overall.

Entering the third period down 2-0, Frykas' two goals and Boulton's tally (all separated by just over six minutes of action) lifted Quinnipiac to a 3-2 lead with just over 11 minutes remaining in regulation. St. Lawrence proceeded to re-tie the score, 3-3, with 1:34 remaining in the game, after it had pulled freshman goaltender Carmen MacDonald just under a minute earlier at the 17:37 mark. The Saints netted the game-winner 22 seconds later, as junior forward Kelly Sabatine tallied an unassisted score to give St. Lawrence the 4-3 victory.

St. Lawrence potted its first goal of the game late in the first period of play, as fifth-year forward Karell Emard picked up a rebound and flipped in her 11th tally of the season. The Saints junior forward Kelly Sabatine skated into the zone with pace and wristed in a shot that was saved by junior goaltender Victoria Vigilanti (Woodbridge, Ontario), but Emard one-timed in the rebound for the score

The Saints increased its lead to 2-0 in the second period of action, netting a power-play goal at the 11:08 mark into the frame. The play developed at the point, where junior defender Brooke Fernandez dished the puck to senior forward Alley Bero. Bero hesitated before firing her shot, catching Vigilanti off-guard, as it sailed over her right should for the score. The goal was Bero's second of the season, while the assist was Fernandez's 16th on the year.

Frykas found her first score of the game at the 2:13 mark into the third period, as she was the recipient of a loose puck on the goal line's doorstep. Sophomore forward Amanda Colin (Burnsville, Minn.) tipped the puck towards Frykas who was left open on the far-side of the net, and buried her opportunity past MacDonald. Colin earned her sixth assist on the goal, while freshman forward Anna Borgfeldt (Kristianstad, Sweden)  earned her first-career point.

The Manitoba native tied the score at two-apiece just under four minutes later, potting a goal off a rebound following a shot from junior forward Brittany Lyons (Canton, Mass.). Frykas once again had positioned herself perfectly in preparation for the rebound, picking her spot before wristing in the goal. Lyons earned her eighth assist on the play, while senior forward Kate Wheeler (Oakville, Ontario) was credited with her sixth assist of the season.

Quinnipiac took the 3-2 lead just over two minutes later on a power-play goal, as Boulton's rocket from the point overpowered MacDonald for the score. Sophomore forward Erica Uden Johansson (Sundsvall, Sweden) swung the puck up top to Boulton who took the shot, where the congestion in front of the net blocked MacDonald's view long enough for the puck to find its way into the back of the net. Uden Johansson was credited with her fourth assist of the season.

Following the goal, St. Lawrence picked up its offensive pressure, but junior goaltender Victoria Vigilanti (Woodbridge, Ontario) made multiple tremendous saves to preserve the lead, including a full extension snag on Emard's shot with 7:47 left to play. Although Smith and Sabatine would add their late tallies to give the Saints the victory, Vigilanti turned away a game-high 34 shots. MacDonald made 24 saves in net for St. Lawrence.

Each team was successful on its power-play once, as Quinnipiac went 1-for-4, while St. Lawrence went 1-for-5 on the evening.

Quinnipiac returns to action tomorrow afternoon, Saturday, Feb. 11 at 4 p.m., when it hosts ECAC Hockey opponent Clarkson at HighPoint Solutions Arena at the TD Bank Sports Center.

Contact: Ross Bennett, rsbennett@quinnipiac.ed