Ephs take series against Continentals

Heading into its weekend games against Hamilton, women’s ice hockey (6-5-1, 3-2-1 NESCAC) hoped to reverse its recent trend of splitting series against NESCAC opponents. Thanks to a standout performance from the Ephs’ new goaltender Christina Cleroux ’18 and tenacious work on offense, the team heads into its next NESCAC series against Colby with two respectable games added to its season tally.
On Saturday, the Ephs achieved a 2-0 victory against the Continentals. Co-captain Andree Heller ’15 earned the first goal of the game eight minutes into the first period, assisted by forwards Kearan Burke ’18 and Gwen Schultz ’15. In a third period power play, forward Emily Krueger ’17 took a shot against Hamilton netminder Samantha Walther that was ultimately slotted home for a decisive second goal of the game by forward Sara Lehman ’17. The Ephs ended the game with a total 27 shots while the Continentals made 20 attempts on the goal. Cleroux had a strong showing in goal, achieving her third shutout as goaltender for the Ephs. In her four hours of playtime sporting the purple and gold, Cleroux has allowed only one goal.
The women’s first matchup against Hamilton on Friday ended in a 0-0 tie, the product of tough offensive maneuvering on both ends of Lansing Chapman Rink and impressive work in the net from both teams’ first-year goaltenders. Hamilton fought aggressively for goals throughout the first two periods of the game, achieving 21 of their 27 total shots on goal during the first 40 minutes of playtime. Casey Brown led the Continentals’ efforts to get points on the board with six shots throughout the game.
The women responded with a particularly strong showing in the game’s third period and overtime, managing to edge out Hamilton’s total shots on goal for the final 25 minutes of the game. Defender Talia Simon ’16 and forward Alex Lovaas ’18 each made four goal attempts during the matchup. However, the game ended without a goal because of fanstastic goaltending. In her second shutout of the season, Cleroux amassed a total of 27 saves for the Ephs. Walther, by comparison, made 20 saves for the Continentals in Friday’s matchup.
Head Coach Meghan Gillis is impressed by the work of her team. “The team continues to come together as a cohesive until. We did a tremendous job killing off penalties both days and limiting Hamilton’s chances,” she said. The team’s captains shared similar sentiments. “Our emphasis has been on playing team-focused hockey for the full 60 minutes. We have a talented group of girls, but what has been even more important is how we come together as a unit on the ice. We have a tough schedule coming up in the second half of our season as we face some of the top teams in the country. We’re confident and ready to make a run deep into championship season by competing relentlessly everyday in practice and every second in games. The league is always very close and we know that all of those seconds really add up,” Heller, Caitlin Conlon ’15 and Nitsan Goldstein ’15 said in a joint statement.
On Jan. 10, the women surpassed Trinity 1-0, with Chelsey Stevenson ’17 scoring the lone goal. On Jan. 9, Krueger, Stevenson and Lehman scored in a 6-3 defeat to the Bantams. On Jan. 3, the women beat St. Olaf 3-1, and on Jan. 2, they lost to Adrian by the same score. On Jan. 7, Williams beat Manhattanville 3-0 and defeated Salve Regina 3-0 on Dec. 5. On Nov. 30, The women lost to Castleton 1-0, and they lost to Utica 4-1 on Nov. 29.
Results from the women’s game against Elmira came in too late to report. Williams next takes on Colby in Waterville, Maine on Friday and again on Saturday.

Alex Lovaas ’18 took four shots in the women’s 0-0 tie against Hamilton last Friday.
Alex Lovaas ’18 took four shots in the women’s 0-0 tie against Hamilton last Friday.