Yale Coming Off Five Straight Road Games
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Games at Ingalls Rink are rare for the Yale women's ice hockey team in the first six weeks of the season -- they play just four of their first 13 games at home. Two of those take place this weekend, when the Bulldogs return to The Whale after playing five straight road games (and before starting a stretch of four more on the road). They host Union (Friday, 7 p.m.) and RPI (Saturday, 4 p.m.) in a pair of ECAC Hockey games.
Yale (0-7-0, 0-4-0 ECAC Hockey) dropped a pair of ECAC Hockey games last weekend at Quinnipiac and Princeton. Earlier last week the Bulldogs had their best offensive showing of the season, scoring three goals at Providence. Sophomore forward Ashley Dunbar (Hillsborough, N.J.), junior forward Danielle Moncion (Round Lake Center, Ont.) and sophomore forward Jackie Raines (London, Ont.) scored goals, while five different players had assists (sophomore forward Jenna Ciotti (Manotick, Ont.), senior forward Lauren Davis (Morrison, Colo.), senior forward Aleca Hughes (Westwood, Mass.), junior forward Jen Matichuk (St. Albert, Alta.) and freshman forward Stephanie Mock (Cape Coral, Fla.)). Mock then scored her first career goal Saturday at Princeton.
The Bulldogs had one of their best defensive efforts last Friday at Quinnipiac, led by 41 saves from senior goaltender Genny Ladiges (Almonte, Ont.). She has made 30 or more saves in four of her six appearances this season. The last time a Yale goalie made 40 saves prior to Friday was Ladiges' 45-save effort at Cornell Feb. 12, 2011.
Union (3-7-1, 1-2-1 ECAC Hockey) has already exceeded its win total from all of last season (2-29-3, 1-19-2), when the Bulldogs swept the season series from the Dutchwomen with a 4-1 win in New Haven and a 5-0 win in Schenectady. After 11 games, the Dutchwomen are already just six goals away from tying the total number of goals they scored in 2010-11 (27 this year, 33 last year). Nearly one-third of the team's goals have come from freshmen, led by forward Bryanne Panchuk (3-4-7). Panchuk was a gold medalist with Team Alberta at the Canada Winter Games in 2011, leading the tournament in scoring. She was named athlete of the year at Edge School, the same school that produced current Bulldogs junior defenseman Jamie Gray (Calgary, Alta.), junior forward Jen Matichuk (St. Albert, Alta.) and freshman defenseman Madi Murray (Medicine Hat, Alta.).
Kate Gallagher has started the last two games in goal for Union, including a 52-save effort in the 2-2 overtime tie with St. Lawrence. She has a .967 save percentage and a 1.26 goals-against average. Alana Marcinko (.903, 3.17) and Shenae Lundberg (.864, 4.41) have also seen time between the pipes.
RPI (2-7-3, 0-3-1 ECAC Hockey), which plays at Brown Friday night, is winless (0-7-1) in its last eight games. The Engineers have scored one goal or less in five of their last six games. That has overshadowed some solid goaltending from both Kelly O'Brien and Brianna Piper, who have split the last four games evenly and combined to stop nearly 94 percent of the shots they faced (102 of 109).
The Engineers' leading scorer is forward Alisa Harrison (5-4-9). Forward Jordan Smelker had a hat trick the last time RPI came to Ingalls, a 4-1 Engineers win last November. The teams tied 2-2 in overtime in their last meeting, Feb. 5 at Houston Field House. RPI had a 2-0 lead until third-period goals by Ciotti and senior defenseman Heather Grant (Toronto, Ont.) enabled the Bulldogs to come away with the tie.
Report by Sam Rubin '95 (email@example.com), Yale Sports Publicity