Women's Ice Hockey: Clinch Playoff Spot
Battling all season with the goal of advancing to the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) playoffs, the women's ice hockey team achieved its objective this past weekend. Although the Mules fell to Middlebury College on Feb. 20, Wesleyan University's loss at home to Connecticut College gave the Colby women a spot in the postseason.
The quarterfinal matchups of the playoffs begin on Saturday, Feb. 27 with the lower-seeded teams facing off on the home rinks of the higher-seeded teams. As the number eight seed, the Mules will confront the highest seed, Amherst College, at 1 p.m. Having defeated the Lord Jeffss 3-2 earlier on in the season, the women are well-prepared for the challenge ahead. The win over the Amherst women, who are the defending Division III national champions, was an amazing boost for the Mules and the victory is viewed as the upset of the season in the NESCAC. Consequently, as one of only a few teams that have produced a win against Amherst this season, the Mules will certainly strain the poise of the Lord Jeffs.
Looking toward this crucial game, the Colby women thoroughly prepare and strategize for what is sure to be a fierce confrontation. With a whole season of highlights to reflect on, the women have much to build their postseason run upon.
Junior goalkeeper Loni Pisani consistently remains the player who the Mules rely on to keep them alive in every game. With a NESCAC save percentage of .883 in addition to an overall save total of 555. Pisani constantly pulls through for the lady Mules. On the opposite end of the ice, junior forward and co-captain Stephanie Scarpato has dominated on the scoreboards with 11 goals, 16 assists and a total of 27 points. Other offensive leaders include Marissa Simmons '12, who has tallied 19 points, co-captain Kaitlyn Conway '10, with 15 points, and Liz Osgood '11, with 14 points.
Naturally, the Colby women face strong competition in the seven other NESCAC teams that have made the playoffs. Just under Amherst, Trinity College and Middlebury College take the second and third seeds. Securing the next spots are Williams College, Bowdoin College, Hamilton College and Connecticut College with the fourth, fifth, sixth and seventh seeds, respectively. Although the lady Mules have suffered some setbacks this year, the postseason presents the women with many new opportunities for success, and the team is in the perfect position to take the NESCACs by storm.