Jim McLaughlin, Sports Editor
After trailing by one goal in the third period of Friday night’s game against Chatham, the Utica College women’s ice hockey put together a come-from-behind victory, which carried over to the next day as the Pioneers earned the sweep.
The Pioneers started off slow as Chatham was able to get on the board first to take the lead with under 13 minutes to go in the first period. UC didn’t allow the first goal to disrupt its rhythm as junior Gabrielle Schnepp tied the game. Schnepp found the back of the net off of the redirected shot from freshman Lauren Patterson. UC headed into the first intermission with the game tied 1-1.
The game was tied halfway through the second period, but junior McKenzie Haskins regained the lead for Chatham to make it 2-1. The Pioneers were not able to score the rest of the second period and went into the third period down by a goal.
Senior Morgan Reed started the run for UC as she tied the game less than a minute into the third period. Reed’s tying goal sparked the UC bench and sophomore Samantha Husak took the lead for the Pioneers two minutes later off the passes from junior Emily Coope and sophomore Taylor Osowski.
Chatham did not go away quietly as they scored on a power-play opportunity to tie the game back up 3-3 with less than 16 minutes left in regulation. UC and Chatham continued to trades shots, but it was less than two minutes left where the Pioneers saw their opportunity. Patterson took a shot that went past the goaltender for the game-winning shot.
The Pioneers went to work the following day for a rematch against Chatham, which wasn’t as close as the night before. Schnepp started the scoring for UC as she scored the first goal of the game off the passes of Patterson and freshman Danielle Haasbeek. Chatham tied the game up less than two minutes later on a goal from Haskins, which ended up being the lone goal for the Cougars.
“On Saturday, we knew what we had to do to come out on top,” sophomore Amanda Lupo said. “After a night’s rest and only a five hour bus ride we were ready to destroy Chatham in its senior game.”
Freshman Kayla Dion regained the lead for UC and in the process scored her first collegiate goal. Reed created more distance from Chatham with a goal of her own with less than five minutes to go in the second period. The goal from Reed was also her 100th point of her career as a Pioneer.
UC headed into the third period with a two-goal lead, but they didn’t seem satisfied yet. Patterson scored the first goal of the third period and her second goal of the weekend to give UC a 4-1 lead over the Cougars. Following Patterson was junior Meghan Power, who added another goal with under 12 minutes to go to make it 5-1.
Sophomore Jennifer Arts concluded the scoring off the pass from senior captain Janessa Haasbeek with .4 seconds left on the clock. The final score was 6-1.
The Pioneers were pleased with the way they responded after Friday’s sub-par game.
“As a team can agree that Saturday was a better day than Friday night,” sophomore Carlie Smith said. “However, we were able to battle and come away with two W’s on the weekend.”
UC returns to the Utica Memorial Auditorium this weekend as they host No. 1 Plattsburgh State on Saturday and Sunday. This first game is set to start Saturday at 7 p.m.