RPI falls to No. 4 Cornell

RPI falls to No. 4 Cornell

TROY, N.Y. – Seven different players scored for the fourth-ranked Cornell University women's hockey team in defeating Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), 8-2, on Friday night at the Houston Field House. With the win, the Big Red improve to 19-3-6 overall (16-3-2 ECAC Hockey), while the Engineers drop to 13-15-5 (10-10-1 ECAC Hockey).

Junior Kristin O'Neill (Oakville, ON/Stoney Creek Sabres) got the scoring started early, when she potted her 20th goal of the season, just 14 seconds into the game. Helpers on the tap-in went to classmate Amy Curlew (Goose Bay, NL/Oakville Hornets) and sophomore Willow Slobodzian (Clavet, SK/Saskatoon Stars).

RPI pulled even at 9:24 of the period, when sophomore Aimee Raithby (Burlington, ON/Burlington Barracudas) flipped a shot home after classmate Morgan Ondrick(Shorewood, IL/Chicago Young Americans) won an offensive zone face-off.

Cornell regained the lead at 2-1 on on shot from the middle of the slot by junior captain Micah Zandee-Hart (Saainichton, BC/Okanagan Hockey Academy). Taking a feed at the right point from O'Neill, Zandee-Hart walked her way to between the circles and scored her third goal of the season.

The eventual game-winning tally came at 18:08 of the first on a redirection in front of the net by senior Pippy Gerace (Jamestown, NY/Etobicoke Jr. Dolphins). A point effort from sophomore Kendra Nealey (Chicago, IL/Chicago Mission) was steered past RPI senior goaltender Lovisa Selander (Sollentuna, Sweden/SDE Riksserien) by Gerace for her seventh goal of the year. A secondary assist was credited to senior Lenka Serdar (Lexington, MA/North America Hockey Academy).

Cornell scored two goals, less than a minute apart, to take a 5-1 lead and chase Selander from the game. Curlew stuck home her third of the season at 6:40, before junior blueliner Jaime Bourbonnais (Mississauga, ON/Oakville Hornets) tallied 33 seconds later.

Gerace and Serdar then pushed the visitors lead to 7-1 with goals at 10:03 and 11:29 of the middle frame.

Freshman Gillis Frechette (Weston, MA/East Coast Wizards) netted Cornell's final goal of the game 6:20 of the third, from sophomore Devon Facchinato (Winsor, ON/Team Ontario) and junior Grace Graham (Island View, NB/Fredericton High School).

RPI pulled one goal back at 16:48 of the third, when senior Jaimie Grigsby (Whitby, ON/Whitby Wolves) stuffed home a rebound at the edge of the crease. Junior Megan Hayes (Hartford, VT/NAHA Winter Hawks) picked up the lone assist, when her shot from the blue line was stopped by Cornell netminder Marlene Boissonnault (Dundee, NB/Rothesay Netherwood School/Canada U18), but not held.

Boissonnault (16-3-4) finished with 15 saves, while Selander (11-14-5) had 16 stops. Kira Bombay (Orleans, ON/Nepean Wildcats) made 12 saves in relief. The Big Red were 0 for 2 on the power play, while the Engineers wound up 0 for 3.

The Engineers return to action tomorrow afternoon, when they host ninth-ranked Colgate University (3pm). Cornell travel to Schenectady to face Union College tomorrow (3pm).