Missed Opportunities Hurt SU Women’s Ice Hockey in 6-2 Loss to Mercyhurst
By John Dales
Citrus TV Women’s Ice Hockey Beat Reporter
ERIE, P.A. — One point separated Syracuse (12-17-2, 10-5-2 College Hockey America) and Mercyhurst (17-9-5, 11-3-3 CHA) entering Friday night. With a win, SU jumps the Lakers for the top spot in the conference. Depending on what happened between RIT and Robert Morris, the Orange could find themselves alone atop the conference. Things didn’t work out that way, though, as the Lakers got an impressive 6-2 victory.
The game started fairly quiet for both sides. Through nearly the first three-quarters of the opening period, neither team got on the scoreboard. Then with 5:30 left to play in the opening frame, Maggie Knott put one in the back of the net off an assist from Emma Nuutinen and Sam Isbell. The Orange responded right away, though. Just 1:33 later, Allie Olnowich got an equalizer with an assist from Victoria Klimek. The scoring did not stop there. Under two minutes later, Megan Korzack and Summer-Rae Dobson assisted on a goal by Rachel Marmen to catapult the Lakers back into the lead. That wrapped up the first period, and Paul Flanagan’s bunch headed to the locker rooms down 2-1.
Syracuse had its chances to get back into the game in the 2nd. SU earned a power-play 11:32 into the 2nd, and Lindsay Eastwood nearly got an equalizer but went off the post with her shot. The power play eventually came up empty, but they got another chance just over three minutes later. Mercyhurst was whistled for too many players on the ice, but yet again, the Orange power-play unit could not convert. Those missed opportunities came back to haunt the Orange. In the span of just 15 seconds, Summer-Rae Dobson and Emma Nuutinen each scored to put the Lakers up 4-1. Both those goals came with under a minute remaining. ‘Cuse entered the intermission having outshot its opponents 19-14 but got outscored 2-0.
Syracuse needed a comeback in the third, and they got started on the right track. Jessica Digorlamo scored 7:53 into the period, and the Laker lead was down to two. Mercyhurst was not ready to give this one up, though. Just under five minutes later, Jordan Mortlock scored her first goal of the season to make it a 5-2 game. Another insurance goal came with under five minutes left to play. Mercyhurst took a 6-2 lead after Summer-Rae Dobson got her second goal and third point of the night.
The clock hit triple zeroes, and a disappointing Friday night contest came to an end for the Orange. The Lakers finished with 46 shots on goal, compared to just 24 for the Orange. The struggling SU power-play also played into this final score. Syracuse was 0-4 on its power-play chances. All hope is not lost for the Orange, though; these two teams face off once again tomorrow afternoon.
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