No. 2/2 Women's Ice Hockey Blanks No. 1/1 Adrian, 2-0, in Norwich East-West Hockey Classic Opene
NORTHFIELD, Vt. – The No. 2/2 Plattsburgh State women's ice hockey team opened up the New Year with a victory, avenging its only loss so far this season with a 2-0 win over No. 1/1 Adrian College to open up Norwich University's East-West Hockey Classic Sunday at Kreitzberg Arena. Plattsburgh State is ranked at No. 2 in both the USCHO.com Women's Division III Top-10 Poll and the D3hockey.com Women's Top-10 Poll, while Adrian is ranked at No. 1 in both the USCHO.com Women's Division III Top-10 Poll and the D3hockey.com Women's Top-10 Poll. Freshman forward Nicole Unsworth (Milwaukee, Wis./East Coast Wizards) scored her first collegiate goal in the contest, while senior forward Courtney Moriarty (Estero, Fla./Northfield Mount Hermon) netted the other marker, her seventh of the season. Plattsburgh State rises to 11-1-0 overall with the win and will face No. 5/5 Elmira College in the championship game tomorrow at 4 p.m. Adrian drops to 11-2-0 overall with the loss and takes on host and No. 3/3 Norwich University in the consolation game tomorrow at 1 p.m. Unsworth netted the eventual game-winner 8:21 into the first period. Senior forward Ashley Songin (Springville, N.Y./Nichols School) won an offensive-zone face-off and played the puck back to senior defenseman Maci Hoskins(Oklahoma City, Okla./Northwood School), while Hoskins sent a short pass to Unsworth along the right boards. Unsworth then wristed a shot from outside the right face-off circle along the boards and beat the goaltender from a tight angle. With 2:29 remaining in the first period, Moriarty added an insurance goal. Senior forward Mackenzie Millen(Anchorage, Alaska/North American Hockey Academy) flipped the puck to freshman forward Taylor Whitney(Livonia, Mich./Little Caesars) in the defensive zone, and Whitney sprung Moriarty forward with a pass off the boards. With just the goalie to beat, Moriarty scored blocker side. While it was unable to score in the second period, Plattsburgh State held a 10-6 margin in shots on goal for the stanza, several of which came as a result of high-percentage chances on a pair of power plays. The Cardinals continued to apply pressure in the third, and Whitney nearly added a goal to their cause with 6:20 elapsed in the period. She poked a centering pass toward the net from the top of the crease, but Adrian's sophomore goaltender Kate Turner turned aside the chance with her right pad. Adrian called a timeout with 1:20 left in regulation and elected to pull its goaltender in favor of the extra attacker with an offensive-zone face-off forthcoming. The Bulldogs sustained a tripping minor 18 seconds later, however, and while Turner eventually left the ice again to bring out the extra skater with 33 seconds left, neither team was able to score down the stretch. Plattsburgh State finished with a 27-17 edge in shots on goal but ended up going 0-for-4 on the power play. The Cardinals' penalty-kill unit, however, kept Adrian off the board during its two power-play opportunities. Plattsburgh State remains the only NCAA Division III women's ice hockey team this season to boast a 100 percent penalty-kill percentage. Senior goaltender Kassi Abbott (Medford, Mass./Boston Shamrocks Elite) earned her 17th career shutout, making 17 saves in the victory for the Cardinals. Abbott also moved into sole possession of first in Division III in shutouts with eight this season, and she is Division III's leader in goals-against average (0.35) and save percentage (.981). Turner turned aside 25 shots in the loss for the Bulldogs.