Women's hockey falls in NESCAC quarters
Despite a strong effort, the Colby women’s hockey team fell 5-0 to Amherst College in the quarterfinals of the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) playoffs.
First-year goalie Brianne Wheeler had an impressive 34 saves in goal, but could not hold off the Lord Jeffs (18-5-2), who are seeded second in the tournament.
The Mules fell to Amherst twice in regular-season play, both of which were close contests (3-2 and 3-1).
Amherst started off the game strong with two goals in just the first three minutes of play, first from Courtney Baranek, then from Ellen Swiontkowski on a power play after Colby was penalized on the previous scoring play. Before the end of the first period, Amherst scored again off of a shot from Megan Doyen, bringing the score to 3-0.
In the second period, the Lord Jeffs scored twice more. Courtney Hanlon's shot upped Amherst’s lead to 4-0. With just over four minutes left to go in the period, Amherst’s Braidie Campbell scored off a pass from teammate Barrett McBride.
Amherst took five shots in the final period, each of which was blocked by Wheeler, ending the game at 5-0: Amherst’s sixth shutout of the season.
The Lord Jeffs are riding a five-game winning streak going into Saturday’s semifinal game against Trinity College.
The Mules finished the season at 9-16-0. The progress they have made over the season has been notable, especially defensively. After giving up 104 goals in 25 games last year, Colby allowed just 49 goals in 24 games, which helped them to improve on last season by six wins.
Several individual players have also achieved various successes this season. Senior tri-captain Stephanie Scarpato reached 100 career points (42 goals and 58 assists) in the final game of the regular season against Williams College. She also led the Mules in scoring this season with eight goals and 12 assists for a total of 20 points.
Other scoring leaders include forwards Samantha Slotnick ’14 (five goals, three assists), Meryl Poulin ’11 (two goals, five assists) and defenders Megan Tedoldi ’13 (three goals, four assists) and Kathy Shei ’13 (two goals, five assists).