Van Wormer with big game for Panthers
PLYMOUTH, N.H. – The Saint Michael’s College women’s hockey team scored a season-best seven goals Saturday afternoon as the Purple Knights knocked off Plymouth State University, 7-3, at Cairns Arena.
Juniors Kiera Nelligan and Madelena Santore led the way for Saint Michael’s, as Nelligan had two goals and an assist and Santore netted a goal with three helpers.
Junior Abby Van Wormer (Marstons Mills, Mass.) led the way for the Panthers with two goals and one assist. Freshman Jamie O’Brien (Chelmsford, Mass.) also tallied a goal for PSU.
The Panthers took a quick lead when O’Brien scored a power play goal on a rebound from Van Wormer. Saint Michael’s had an answer with its own power play goal two minutes later by senior Emily Paquin, who flipped a wrist shot from the top of the left circle to tie things at 1-1 after one period.
The Purple Knights (4-15-2, 3-9-2 ECAC East) exploded for five goals in the second period to take a commanding lead. Senior Meg Guarente netted her first goal of the season on a putback in the right corner of the crease after a saved slapshot by senior Kaleigh Ferrari. Nelligan then strung together back-to-back goals to widen the gap to 4-1. Nelligan’s first tally was a rebound on a scramble for the puck after sophomore Allison Graf pasted a slapshot off the glove of Plymouth freshman goalie Ali Ponte (Richmond Hill, Ontario). Nelligan’s second lamp lighter came off another rebound, this time assisted by Santore and junior Kelly McDonald.
Van Wormer countered with her first of two goals on the day, but sophomore Melissa Hallisey answered back just as quickly with a mop-up goal after a backhand shot by freshman Macey Thomas scattered away from the goalie. McDonald and Santore then hooked up for the last goal of the period on a 2-on-1 breakaway. Santore blazed down the left wing and hung on the puck just long enough to make Ponte commit before passing off to McDonald for the easy score. After accumulating three assists, Santore finally deposited a goal of her own on a breakaway in the third period.
Saint Michael’s senior goalie Alysia Goldman made 34 saves for the Purple Knights, who held a slim 41-37 shot advantage despite the wide margin of victory. For Plymouth, Ponte also made 34 saves.
PSU plays a make-up game on Monday at Norwich, while the Purple Knights return to action next Friday when they travel to UMass Boston.
(Courtesy of Saint Michael’s Sports Information)
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