Purple Knights suffer fifth one-goal setback, Saavedra and Santore net markers
SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt. - Nichols College freshman Kerri Nadeau (Chepachet, R.I./Ponaganset) scored 34 seconds into overtime on Friday, sending the Bison past the Saint Michael's College women's ice hockey team, 3-2, at Cairns Arena during an Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) East contest.
The Purple Knights slipped to 1-13-1 overall and 0-10-1 in the league behind their fifth one-goal setback, while the visitors snapped a five-game losing streak, moving to 5-10-1 and 2-6-1. The Bison hold a narrow 3-2-1 edge in the all-time series.
Senior Madelena Santore (Millington, N.J./New Jersey Rockets) and freshman Fernanda Saavedra (Miami, Fla./Pittsburgh Penguins Elite) scored for the hosts, with Saavedra netting the first tally of her career. Freshman Kristen Spulecki (Orchard Park, N.Y./Buffalo Bison) provided two assists, and junior Erin Stevens (Watertown, Conn./Connecticut Polar Bears) made 33 saves.
Freshman Talia Hohmann (Marina, Calif./San Jose Jr. Sharks) had a goal and an assist for Nichols, classmate Grace Murphy (Montclair, Va./Prince William Panthers) also scored, and first-year Tori Gianformaggio (Huntington Beach, Calif./Boston Shamrocks) made 21 stops. Nadeau netted the winner off of a rebound following Stevens' lone save of overtime, collecting and calmly sending a shot into the upper corner.
The Purple Knights held a 13-8 advantage in shots during a scoreless first period before Murphy and Saavedra traded second-period markers. Murphy made it 1-0 just 34 ticks into the stanza, but Saavedra knotted the score at 13:28 after Gianformaggio made a left pad save with Santore on a breakaway. As players caught back up to the play, Saavedra tucked the loose puck inside the left post. Saint Michael's had a 2-on-0 rush with 10 seconds remaining while looking to take the lead, but a shot went wide right of the net.
Santore converted a Spulecki breakout pass into the go-ahead marker 23 seconds into the third, skating past three Bison before deking the goalie, but Hohmann caught the upper corner 12:50 into the period for the tying goal.
Saint Michael's completes a two-game home weekend tomorrow when it takes on Manhattanville College at 3 p.m.