Duggan's Milestone Goals Give Saints Series Win

Photo by Beverly Schaefer
Photo by Beverly Schaefer

Boxscore

CANTON, N.Y. -- Senior assistant captain Carson Duggan achieved another career milestone on Saturday afternoon, as the Ma-Me-O Beach, Alberta native scored two goals to bring her collegiate total to 101, tying Brian MacFarlane '55 for the most in St. Lawrence University history.  Though Duggan provided the offense, junior goaltender Brittony Chartier helped close the door on Clarkson, making 37 saves to help sweep the Golden Knights out of the 2009 ECAC Hockey Quarterfinals.

St. Lawrence, who is the No. 2 seed in this year's conference tournament, improved to 24-9-3 (16-5-1) on the year while Clarkson's season comes to an end with a mark of 16-14-6 (10-8-4).  The Scarlet and Brown advance to the semifinals for the sixth consecutive year and await the winner of the Dartmouth-Colgate series.  The top-seeded Harvard Crimson advanced to the semifinals by sweeping Cornell and will play Rensselaer who upset the No. 3 seed Princeton.  The semifinals and finals will be hosted by Harvard University next weekend, Saturday and Sunday, March 7 and 8.

"Carson (Duggan) continued to do what she has done for four seasons with our program, which is scoring goals when they matter most," said St. Lawrence head coach Chris Wells.  "She's such a great competitor and for her to reach Brian MacFarlane's goal record truly demonstrates what a gifted player she is."

The Saints, who used a miraculous comeback effort on Friday evening to stun Clarkson by the score of 4-3 in overtime, picked up right where they left off in the first period on Saturday.  Duggan gave her team a 1-0 lead at 12:47 with a power play goal that made her the first female hockey player in St. Lawrence history to reach 100 collegiate goals.  Junior Courtney Sawchuk cycled the puck to Duggan behind Clarkson goaltender Lauren Dahm, where Duggan quickly wrapped the puck around the par post for her 21st goal of the season.

Though it took five games for Duggan to reach the century plateau for goals in her career, it only took her 1:37 seconds to collect No. 101.  She put St. Lawrence on top 2-0 at 14:24 of the opening stanza when she one-timed the puck off of a face-off win by junior Karell Emard over Dahm's left shoulder to tie MacFarlane's mark as the most prolific goal-scorer in University history.

Despite being outshot in the opening frame by a narrow 9-7 margin, the Knights began to generate some offensive chances late in the period, including a slap shot off the stick of Katelyn Ptolemy that beat Chartier but clanked off the right post and away from the net.  The close-call proved to be a theme for the visitors, as they had several pucks slide through the crease and somehow fall by the wayside throughout the contest.

Clarkson would indeed turn up the heat in the second period, as they fired 20 shots on Chartier to try and crack into their rival's lead.  The St. Lawrence netminder would make several dazzling saves, including two on Marie-Jo Gaudet and Tegan Schroeder while Clarkson skated on the power play.  The Knights also thought they had their first goal when Britney Selina slid a shot on Chartier from the near post, but it somehow trickled through the goalie's pads but through the crease and never across the line.

St. Lawrence would also have their share of chances to expand the lead in the second frame, including a shot from Emard that hit the goal post to Dahm's left.  Their inability to pick up an added insurance goal allowed Clarkson to finally cash in and cut their deficit in half at 2-1 at 16:07 of the second period.  After senior Lisa Batchelor was sent to the box for tripping, Kali Gillanders hammered a long rebound past Chartier for her fourth goal of the year with assists going to Danielle Boudreau and Juana Baribeau.

Having outshot St. Lawrence 20-11 in the second period, Clarkson continued to work hard in the offensive end throughout the final 20 minutes.  Their fore-checking pressure caused several turnovers from the home team that forced Chartier to make crucial save after crucial save to protect the one-goal lead.  Meanwhile,

St. Lawrence was content working hard along the boards and dumping the puck deep into Clarkson territory to try and milk the clock.

With a faceoff coming to Chartier's right after an icing call, Clarkson burned their timeout with 2:02 to play and opted to pull Dahm in favor of the extra skater.  The Golden Knights threw everything they had Chartier's way, but the Saskatoon, SK native protected her lead and improved to 20-0-2 on the season when carrying a lead through two stanzas thanks to 11 saves in the third period to give the Saints a 2-1 victory.

"Brittony (Chartier) was outstanding in each game this weekend, but having her close the door tonight was huge for us," added Coach Wells.  "She got into a solid rhythm and delivered when we needed her most."

The quarterfinal series win was the second in three years for St. Lawrence against their cross-town rivals, as they swept Clarkson out of the playoffs in 2006.  The Knights finished with an impressive 38-25 advantage in shots on goal, while each team finished with one power play goal in the game (SLU 1-of-4, CU 1-of-3).

The Saints will learn their opponent for next weekend's ECAC Hockey Semifinal game tomorrow when Colgate visits Dartmouth for game three of their series.  The semifinal games will played on Saturday, March 7 at the Bright Hockey Center with game times to be announced.