Team Notes: Cornell Hosts St. Lawrence, Clarkson in Pivotal League Weekend
ITHACA, N.Y. – A pair of pivotal ECAC Hockey games awaits
Cornell this weekend as it welcomes St. Lawrence and No. 6 Clarkson
into Ithaca. The Saints, tied for fourth in the league standings
with Cornell, and the Knights, two spots ahead of both teams,
should provide a challenge for the Big Red as well as entertaining,
competitive hockey for spectators.
GAME #16: No. 4 Cornell vs. St. Lawrence
GAME TIME: Friday, January 18, 7 p.m.
GAME SITE: Lynah Rink (Ithaca, N.Y.)
SERIES RECORD: St. Lawrence leads 32-27-4
LAST MEETING: Cornell won 4-2 on Dec. 1, 2012
2012-13 RECORDS | LEAGUE STANDING: Cornell (12-4, 8-2 ECAC Hockey | t-4th); St. Lawrence (13-8-1, 8-2 ECAC Hockey | t-4th)
GAME #16: No. 4 Cornell vs. No. 6 Clarkson
GAME TIME: Saturday, January 19, 4 p.m.
GAME SITE: Lynah Rink (Ithaca, N.Y.)
SERIES RECORD: Cornell leads 18-11-2
LAST MEETING: Clarkson won 2-1 on Nov. 30, 2012
2012-13 RECORDS: Cornell (12-4, 8-2 ECAC Hockey | t-4th); Clarkson (17-5, 9-1 ECAC Hockey | 2nd)*
*Records before games on Jan. 18
ABOUT THE BIG RED
Ithaca and Lynah Rink welcomed the Big Red women's hockey team back to action on Tuesday night, and the team reminded the Lynah Faithful what it had been missing for two months. Jillian Saulnier had a career-high six points and Brianne Jenner added her second hat trick of the season as the Cornell offense overpowered visiting Syracuse for an 8-1 victory. Cornell, which has gone to the NCAA Frozen Four each of the last three seasons, is now 7-0 on the season at home. Prior to Tuesday's win against the Orange, Cornell had been on the road for seven consecutive contests. The team split a key series at No. 9 Northeastern and No. 3 Boston College last weekend. Now re-entering ECAC Hockey play with a fourth consecutive regular-season league title in sight, Cornell is tied for fourth place in the standings but with games in hand over almost every team ahead of it.
HEAD COACH DOUG DERRAUGH
Now in his eighth season directing the Cornell women's hockey program, Doug Derraugh has quickly brought the Big Red women to their current place among the nation's elite. Taking a program that won just four games in the season prior to his arrival, Derraugh guided the Big Red to the national title game in his fifth season and back-to-back-to-back NCAA Frozen Four appearances in 2010, 2011 and 2012, completely turning around the culture of the women's hockey program at Cornell. Derraugh, a 1991 graduate of Cornell, was the last Big Red men's hockey player to score 30 goals in a season. He earned his 120th career win at Boston University on Oct. 20 and is four wins away from tying the school record for victories as a women's hockey coach (Bill Duthie, 135).
ABOUT ST. LAWRENCE
The Saints, based in Canton, are a strong team that is playing very well after an 0-5 start to the season. After those first five losses, St. Lawrence went on a six-game winning streak to move over .500. Now, at 13-8-1, the Saints have won three of their last four games and are tied for fourth in the league standings with the Big Red. Kelly Sabatine continues to lead the way offensively with 11 goals and 13 assists for a team-high 24 points. Amanda Boulier is not far behind with 22, and Rylee Smith has 20. Carmen McDonald remains in goal for the Saints, saving 91 percent of shots she faces and giving up just 2.52 goals per game.
St. Lawrence is coached by Chris Wells, now in his fifth year with the team.
THE SERIES WITH ST. LAWRENCE
The Saints and Big Red have already met twice this season with wins coming in both games for the Big Red. In October, Cornell came away with a 5-1 victory thanks to two goals from Emily Fulton and one each from Anna Zorna, Alyssa Gagliardi and Brianne Jenner. Cornell then went to Canton for a league game and win 4-2 on the strength of a Jessica Campbell breakaway game-winner and an Erin Barley-Maloney empty netter. Still, St. Lawrence leads the all-time series 32-27-4. The Big Red lost to the Saints in the ECAC Hockey Tournament final last year after beating them twice during the regular season. That loss was Cornell's last defeat on home ice.
A WIN AGAINST ST. LAWRENCE WOULD…
…give Cornell a 13-4 record overall this season…move Cornell up to 9-2 in league play and at least third in the ECAC Hockey standings…keep Cornell a perfect 8-0 at Lynah Rink this season…be Cornell's 99th consecutive game with a goal…move Doug Derraugh to just three games shy of the school record for wins as a head coach.
The Knights, who hail from Potsdam, are the No. 6 team in the country and currently on a two-game winning streak after knocking off Yale and Brown last weekend. Clarkson was ranked as high as No. 2 in the nation earlier in the season, including during the game that it won over Cornell 2-1 at Cheel Arena. Clarkson has slipped a bit lately, though, dropping a home series against Northeastern and Boston College and also losing to unranked Colgate the day after it defeated Cornell. Still, Clarkson is a solid team with the scoring prowess of Jamie Lee Rattray (16-17—33) and Carly Mercer (9-21—30). Erica Howe is the league's defending Goaltender of the Week, as she has a .933 save percentage and a 1.72 goals against average.
Clarkson is led by co-head coaches Matt and Shannon Desrosiers.
THE SERIES WITH CLARKSON
The Big Red holds the lifetime advantage against Clarkson with an 18-11-2 record all-time versus the Knights. But most recently, Clarkson got the better of the Big Red on its home turf. The Knights emerged from a tight game in Potsdam with a 2-1 victory on Nov. 30 thanks to a third-period power play strike by Shannon MacAulay with just eight minutes to go. The teams split their series last year with Clarkson winning a wild 5-3 game in Cheel Arena before the Big Red emerged with a 2-1 overtime victory in Lynah.
A WIN AGAINST CLARKSON WOULD…
…even the season series at 1-1…improve the team to 7-1 on Saturdays.
Jillian Saulnier had a career high in points on Tuesday night against Syracuse, scoring two goals and assisting on four others for a total of six. Her four assists were also a career high, and she reached and then passed 75 career points on the night. She now stands at 80 career points and is averaging 1.57 points per game in her Big Red career.
HAT TRICK NUMBER TWO
Brianne Jenner also had a terrific night against Syracuse, recording her second hat trick of the season after scoring a career-high four goals against Colgate on Nov. 16. Her only other career hat trick came against Brown on Feb. 11, 2011 during her freshman season.
Freshman Morgan Richardson picked up her first career assist just 2:27 into Tuesday's game against Syracuse. Then she did it again a mere two minutes later, adding her second ever assist on a goal by Brianne Jenner. Richardson also tripled her career points output on the night, going from one career point to three. Her lone goal came against Princeton on Nov. 2.
The Big Red's contest against Syracuse was its first in Lynah Rink since a Nov. 16 contest against Colgate, and the team rewarded the home fans with an 8-1 win. Cornell is very strong at home, posting a 7-0 record in Lynah this season. The team is on an eight-game undefeated run in Ithaca dating back to last season's NCAA Tournament win against Boston University. On the road, the Big Red is just 5-4. After this weekend, Cornell will alternate home and road series for the rest of the regular season. Cornell has not lost a regular-season home game since Nov. 11, 2011.
The Big Red, in its seven home games this season, is averaging nearly six points per game as a team more than it is averaging on the road. Offensive leader Brianne Jenner is earning 2.42 points per game in Lynah Rink as opposed to 1.33 points per game away from home. The Big Red has scored 95 points in its seven home contests but just 77 in its nine away games. In home games, all but one player on the roster is at least a +1, and Jenner and Jillian Saulnier lead that category with +14s. On the road, though, three Big Red players have minus ratings and the team high is Jessica Campbell's +7.
With the victory against Syracuse on Tuesday, Cornell has now claimed nine consecutive contests on Tuesday nights. Cornell's last loss Tuesday night came on Nov. 2, 2010 against Mercyhurst in a 4-3 overtime defeat.
The Big Red's game last Saturday against Northeastern was its first since Dec. 1, a span of 42 days. No Division 1 team in the country went longer than the Big Red without playing a game. Cornell did not play in Dec. 7-8 because of Cornell's exams, and the team did not resume play earlier in January as it was missing one third of its roster to the Canadian Under-22 Meco Cup team.
Cornell is now at the tail end of five games in eight days, its second such stretch of the season. The Big Red opened the year going 4-1 in its first eight days, downing Boston University, St. Lawrence, Brown and Yale while losing to Boston University in a second game. This time around, Cornell split a series in Boston, defeated Syracuse on Tuesday and is set for games on back-to-back days against Clarkson and St. Lawrence on Friday and Saturday.
HOLDING A LEAD
The Big Red was undefeated in its last 62 games when holding a lead after two periods entering the weekend. The Big Red extended the streak to 63 games with the victory at Northeastern, but Boston College broke that long streak when it came from behind in the final minute of play to force overtime and win. Before Sunday, Cornell had not lost a game when leading after two periods since the national title game in 2010.
The Big Red held still in this week's USCHO.com national poll, remaining at No. 4 after splitting its weekend games. Boston College jumped over Harvard to the No. 2 spot, while undefeated Minnesota, at 22-0, has a lock on first place. Other ECAC Hockey teams in the picture are Clarkson (No. 6), St. Lawrence (RV) and Dartmouth (RV).
Seven Big Red players won the Gold with the Canada Under-22 roster for the Meco Cup earlier this month. Laura Fortino, Lauriane Rougeau, Hayleigh Cudmore, Cassandra Poudrier, Jillian Saulnier, Brianne Jenner and Jessica Campbell all traveled Germany to compete for their country and came away with Canada's ninth gold in 11 years.
Cornell junior alternate captain Alyssa Gagliardi spent some of her winter break participating in the 2012 U.S. Women's National Team Winter Camp in Blaine, Minn. Thirty-six total players were selected for the Winter Camp, and they were divided into two teams of 18 for three intrasquad scrimmages. Gagliardi was on the camp's White Team with three other current ECAC Hockey rivals.
DO IT FOR DARON SERIES
Cornell's games on Feb. 1-2 against Rensselaer and Union will be played as the “Do It For Daron Series.” Do It For Daron is a charity founded by friends and family of Daron Richardson to raise awareness and inspire conversations about youth mental health. To show support for the Big Red and freshman Morgan Richardson – the sister of Daron Richardson – the team asks that fans wear purple to the Do It For Daron Series games.
MARKERS FOR MADISON
Brianne Jenner is participating in a goal drive this year for a young girl with brain cancer, Madison Primeau. For every goal Jenner scores, Jenner's sponsors will donate money to a charity to help pay Madison's medical bills. Jenner, now with 10 goals on the season, has raised close to $1,000 already for Primeau plus more than $250 in extra donations. To sponsor Jenner's charity, e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Big Red's streak of scoring at least one goal in a game is now 98 games long, dating back all the way to a 0-0 tie against Quinnipiac on Feb. 5, 2010. Cornell scored a goal in every game last year, something only it can say. Cornell was also the only team playing a full Division I schedule to not have a tie last year.
Cornell has multiple players near the top of the country in many categories. Brianne Jenner has the nation's fifth-best points per game total with 2.00, while Jillian Saulnier is at No. 16 with her 1.56 points per game. Jenner's 0.93 goals per game also puts her seventh in the country. Saulnier sits alone in fifth in the nation with 1.12 assists per game, and Jenner is right behind her in eighth with 1.07. Saulnier is tied for 14th in the country with three game-winners, and Lauriane Rougeau is eighth in points per game by defenseman (0.88).
As a team, the Big Red's 4.06 goals per game ranks it fifth in the country, and its 1.88 goals allowed per game is also seventh-best. Cornell has the nation's third-best penalty kill (90.6 percent).
CAREER NUMBERS WATCH
Alyssa Gagliardi scored her 50th point.
Jillian Saulnier reached the 75-point mark.
Jessica Campbell tallied her 50th career point.
Approaching career numbers:
Laura Fortino is two assists away from a tie for sixth in team history (90).
Monika Leck's next point will be her 20th.
Erin Barley-Maloney is four games away from her 100th.
Alyssa Gagliardi will reach 10 goals with her next score.
Jillian Saulnier is two assists shy of 50 and one goal away from 30.
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK
Brianne Jenner, who racked up a career-high six points on Nov. 16 and added three more on Nov. 17 was named the ECAC Hockey Player of the Week on Nov. 20. Freshman Taylor Woods, who had five points in those two games against Colgate, was named the league's Rookie of the Week. Jenner is the first Cornell Player of the Week this season while Woods is the second Rookie of the Week (Cassandra Poudrier, Nov. 6).
REPRESENTING HER COUNTRY
Brianne Jenner missed the Princeton and Quinnipiac games in November as she competed with the Canadian National Women's Team at the 4 Nations Cup in Finland. Jenner and Rebecca Johnston '12 each had an assist in Canada's four games as the Canadians wound up losing 3-0 to the United States in the gold medal game. Jenner returns to Ithaca with a silver medal from one of the top women's hockey competitions in the world.
OUTRANKING THE COMPETITION
In its last 28 games against ranked opponents from the start of the 2009-10 season until now, the Big Red holds a 17-11 record. Cornell was a very impressive 9-3 against ranked opponents in 2011-12.
After three consecutive games at Lynah, Cornell returns to the road to face Yale and Brown. Cornell travels to Yale on Friday at 7 p.m. and faces the Bears on Saturday at 4 p.m.