February 17, 2012

Season High in Goals Not Enough for Win at Dartmouth

Two Goals for Moncion as Bulldogs Fall 10-5

HANOVER, N.H. – It was the type of offensive outburst the Yale women's ice hockey team has been waiting for all season long, but unfortunately it came on a night when the Bulldog defense could not contain Dartmouth's offense. The Big Green came away with a 10-5 win in a wild game at Thompson Arena Friday. The Bulldogs' five goals, which came from four different players, were the most they scored in a game since a 5-0 win at Union Feb. 4, 2011. Junior forward Danielle Moncion led the way with a pair of tallies.

The scoring chances came early and often for both teams. Yale's first power play came slightly more than a minute into the first. After senior defenseman Heather Grant had one shot denied by Big Green keeper Katie Milligan, she had two more blocked by the Big Green defense. After a loose puck slid through the crease behind Milligan and very nearly went in, Dartmouth got a great short-handed chance at the other end of the ice. During a 2-on-1, Yale senior goalie Genny Ladiges was able to react quickly enough with her glove to deflect away a shot by forward Kelly Foley from low in the slot.

The Bulldogs almost caught a break five minutes in when senior forward Lauren Davis sent the puck in front and it very nearly got deflected past Milligan. Ladiges, meanwhile, was busy making save after save in the early going as she continued to flash the form from her 90-stop weekend last time out. But after she denied an attempt by forward Camille Dumais from right in front of the net, a deflection by defenseman Sasha Nanji got past her at 10:06. With the Big Green on the power play 40 seconds later forward Erica Dobos stuffed one in, and quickly the score was 2-0 Dartmouth. That set the tone for a night where the goals would come in bunches.

Nanji deked her way through the Yale defense to slide another one past Ladiges at 15:20, giving the Big Green blueliner four goals in two games vs. the Bulldogs this year. But Yale answered that goal quickly. Junior defenseman Jamie Gray put a shot on net that Milligan could not control, and junior forward Alyssa Zupon was parked in front to help slide the loose puck over the goal line. Freshman forward Stephanie Mock also assisted on the play.

That capped a stretch of four straight Yale goals, spanning five games, where either Zupon or her linemate, sophomore forward Jackie Raines, were involved in the scoring.

Dartmouth reclaimed momentum heading into the first intermission on a goal by forward Reagan Fischer just 78 seconds before the end of the period, making the score 4-1.

The Big Green scored again 43 seconds into the second, and freshman Jaimie Leonoff came on in relief of Ladiges at that point. Milligan followed that with one of her best saves of the night, denying Raines from right at the doorstep to keep Dartmouth's lead at 5-1.

Yale then had to kill a penalty, and a forechecking freshman forward Lynn Kennedy provided a spark there. First she broke up an attempted pass in the Dartmouth zone, nearly getting the puck past Milligan. She then headed to the boards and tied up the puck near the corner while taking on three Dartmouth players.

After several seconds ticked away thanks to Kennedy's efforts, the Bulldogs were able to finish off the kill.

Dartmouth extended its lead to 6-1 on a goal by forward Camille Dumais at 7:31 of the second. Foley, one of six seniors on the Big Green line chart, assisted on the play for the 100th point of her career. Exactly a minute later, forward Sally Komarek backhanded one high past Leonoff to make it 7-1.

The Bulldogs would not go away, though; they actually wound up outscoring Dartmouth for the remainder of the game. They got back on the scoreboard thanks to a pair of power plays later in the second. On the first, Grant rifled a slap shot wide and Milligan denied Hughes in front, but Grant eventually got the puck back from Hughes and fed it to Moncion. Moncion's slap shot slipped through Milligan's pads to make it 7-2 with 8:40 left in the period.

On the next power play, Milligan again made a spectacular denial, this time of Mock in front. But once again the Bulldogs kept working the puck, and after a shot by Kennedy (set up by junior defenseman Natalie Wedell) was stopped, Mock was able to knock in the loose puck.

Just eight seconds later Dumais scored again, but the Bulldogs would have the last say for the second period. The shootout continued as Hughes held up at the Dartmouth blue line to get a pass from Grant in transition. Hughes skated into the right circle and sniped one inside the far post with only 43.6 seconds left in the period, putting Yale within 8-4.

A goal on a delayed penalty five minutes into the third by defenseman Moira Scanlon gave Dartmouth more breathing room. During the penalty kill that followed Moncion came up with a huge play, snaring a loose puck behind Leonoff just before it crossed the goal line and flicking it all the way out of the zone.

Dartmouth put Whitney Woodcox in goal with 9:36 left in the game, and she was greeted 13 seconds later by a goal from Moncion assisted by Hughes and junior defenseman Emily DesMeules. But two minutes later the Big Green answered with a goal by Dumais, giving her a hat trick.

Leonoff came up with a great save to keep the game from getting further out of hand, closing up the five-hole and denying forward Ali Winkel on a breakaway with less than  two minutes to play. That kept the final score at 10-5 Dartmouth.

Yale concludes the season at No. 8 Harvard Saturday afternoon. After the game, the Bulldogs are attending a CWHL game between the Boston Blades and the Burlington Barracudas at Burbank Arena in Reading, Mass.  The game is a fundraiser for the Mandi Schwartz Foundation, the charity started by Hughes in memory of former Yale center Mandi Schwartz '10 (1988-2011) and her courageous battle with cancer.

Report by Sam Rubin '95 (sam.rubin@yale.edu), Yale Sports Publicity