Great Defensive Effort Gives Syracuse First Conference Win of the Season
By Noah Cierzan
CitrusTV Woman’s Ice Hockey Beat Reporter
ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Paul Flanagan was not shy about his team’s lack of effort in the 7-4 loss to RIT on Friday. He challenged the team to outwork the Tigers on Saturday, saying he would put money on his team.
Whether or not Flanagan placed the bet is unknown, but he would have been a happy gambler as Syracuse (2-10, 1-1 College Hockey America) rolled to a 3-0 victory on the road against RIT (3-6-1, 1-3 CHA).
Syracuse didn’t put one past Tigers goalie Jessi O’Leary in the first period, but they peppered her, outshooting RIT 32-6. This wore down RIT’s defenses, and Syracuse was able to capitalize.
Mae Batherson got the first goal of the game halfway through the second period off an SU power play, giving the Orange a one-goal lead heading into the third period.
Kelli Rowswell would score her team leading fourth goal of the year in the third before Emma Polaski scored an empty net goal to put the game on ice.
The biggest difference between Friday’s and Saturday’s games is Syracuse kept the intensity up through all three periods. Syracuse is at its best when its cycling the puck in the opponent’s zone, getting lots of shots, and more importantly not exposing the defense. Overall, the Orange outshot the Tigers 74-24.
Ady Cohen also got the start in goal after Allison Small struggled on Friday. Cohen took advantage of the start, making 12 saves and posting her second shutout of the season. This weekend brought less clarity to the starting goaltender competition.
Syracuse now has two weeks off before its next game. With the first part of the season in the rearview mirror, it is evident that SU has a lot of talent though their record of 2-10 doesn’t show it. They will have the opportunity to compete for the CHA title once again if they play like they did on Saturday.
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