Women’s ice hockey defeats, ties Trinity in conference matches

Forward Meghan Halloran ’21 scored the Ephs’ first goal in Friday’s 2-1 victory over the Bantams. Photo Courtesy of Sports Information.

Women’s ice hockey (10–6–6, 4–5–5 in the NESCAC) hosted two conference games versus Trinity last weekend, winning Friday and tying on Saturday.

The Ephs tied the Bantams 1-1 on Saturday in Lansing Chapman Rink. The two goals were scored in the second period by Bantam forward Abigail Riskevich and Eph forward Gabbi Montembeault ’21.

The women outshot Trinity 15-3 in the first period, but neither team was able to score. In the second period, Trinity broke the deadlock.

At 11:28 of the frame, the Bantams scored a full–strength goal. A miscommunication in the neutral zone resulted in a two-on-one predicament in favor of Trinity. Bantam Claire Foran was in possession of the puck down the left side of the Ephszone. She faked a shot and centered a pass to Riskevich, who one-timed a shot over the shoulder of Marissa Anderson ’20 for the first goal of her college career.

Shortly after Riskevich scored her goal, she was called for a holding penalty at 13:27. When Trinity’s Kayla Milofsky was called for tripping at 14:33, the women had a two-man advantage for one minute, a golden opportunity to equalize.

The Ephs set up some great chances in front of the Bantam net and tested goaltender Sydney Belsinkas. Just seconds after Riskevich’s penalty expired, the Ephs managed to score a second-period goal of their own. Candy Lu ’18 received the puck and passed it to Eliza Quigley ’19. Quigley took the shot from the left point. Belsinkas made the save, but Montembeault gathered the rebound on the right side of the net. Montembeault beautifully one-timed a shot into the top-left pocket to tie up the game at one.

The score was 1-1 at the start of the third period. A chance arose for the Ephs around five minutes into the period. Montembeault and Reisman set up a two-on-one opportunity, but when Montembeault centered the pass to Reisman, Reisman could not quite finish off the play.

Several penalties were given in the middle of the period, but no goals were scored.

At 16:55, it seemed that the Ephs had scored the game-winning goal when the puck found the back of the net after a flurry of frantic action in front of Belsinkas. The goal, however, was waived off, as Montembeualt was ruled to have caught the puck and thrown it in the goal.

The game ended with a 1-1 tie, which sent both teams to a five-minute, sudden-death overtime. Unfortunately, no team could score, and the game ended in a tie.

We played well, but we just need to put pucks into empty nets when we get those opportunities, head coach Meghan Gillis said.

On Friday, the Ephs defeated the Bantams 2-1.

Brynn Puppe ’21 was called for hooking at 4:42. With Bantam Maggie Cusick already in the box for hooking from 3:16, the players skated four-on-four. No goals came from this pair of penalties early in the game.

The women outshot Trinity 12-3 in the first period and  consistently broke through the Bantams’ defensive line. Belsinkas, however, made several key saves.

In the second period, the women skillfully set up scoring opportunities, but none of them could get past Belsinkas. The Ephs dominated the period, and it showed in their 18 shots to Trinity’s five. With just 27 seconds left in the period, Bantam forward Taylor Peracchio was sent to the box. On the power play, Annie Rush ’19 had the opportunity the Ephs needed to get on the board. Rush’s slap shot from the point was headed for the net until Belinskas’ quick glove deflected the puck wide.

Halfway through the third, Rush centered a pass from behind the net to Abby Brustad ’19. Brustad quickly back-handed a shot, which Belinskas saved. The puck was not covered, and Meghan Halloran ’21 poked the loose puck into the net, giving the Ephs a 1-0 lead.

With the clock ticking down, Trinity called two back-to-back timeouts in the final minutes of the game. The Bantams pulled Belinskas to give themselves a one-man advantage. The Ephs gained possession of the puck, and Rush centered the puck from the corner where Brustad easily guided the puck into an empty net at 19:37.

Off the last face-off, Trinity had one last surge of energy. The Bantams skated around the Ephs’ defensemen, and Bantam forward Lauren Macmaster scored at 19:45. However, the Ephs closed out the game with a 2-1 victory.

“We established a better net-front presence than we have in the past, and we played smart defensively when we got the lead,” Gillis said of Friday’s game. “We have a week to prepare for Middlebury, and we’ll be focusing on finishing the plays we set up.”

The women will host Middlebury on Feb. 16 at 7 p.m. in Lansing Chapman Rink.

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