Blitz, RPI score late to defeat Syracuse
By Chilekasi Adele
CitrusTV Ice Hockey Beat Reporter
Paul Flanagan’s squad had been chasing from behind. They caught up in the marathon with RPI, and stayed with them stride for stride.
That’s until RPI Junior Julia Blitz pulled away and led the Engineers to a 3-2 exhibition win Sunday — handing Syracuse a tough preseason loss.
Early starts were a theme for both teams early on. RPI got on the board with two quick goals in the first period. The Engineers’ Marah Wagner scored 2:02 into the first — Magdalena Erbenova would tack on a second goal 4 minutes and 52 seconds later.
Amelia Van Vliet replaced starter Allison Small in goal heading into the second period. Early on, forward Rayla Clemons scored during a delayed penalty call against RPI just over 5 minutes into the 2nd period. Tatum White and Mae Batherson assisted Clemons on the goal.
RPI’s Sarah Bukvic would to the box for tripping — leading to a power-play goal 6:24 into the 2nd by Jessica DiGirolamo. Fellow Ontarian Sarah Marchand and Junior Mae Batherson would assist her on the tying goal.
Both teams struggled to find the net until late in the third period — when the aforementioned Blitz would find the back of the net off an Amelia Van Vliet rebound with 1:56 remaining in the game.
The Orange would pull Van Vliet for an extra attacker, but nothing came to fruition. They lost this game despite outshooting the Engineers by 18. They did stop RPI on the power play all three times they had to kill the man advantage. Syracuse also led in faceoffs, 26-21.
Syracuse’s next — and first regular-season opponent — is also from the ECAC. The Orange will head to Canton, N.Y. to face St. Lawrence on October 1st and 2nd.
In last year’s abbreviated season, the Saints had a 6-7 record. They were 4-1 at home, but 2-6 on the road last year — something SU will have to deal with, as they will be the visitors.
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