RPI suffers weekend sweep, falls to No. 9 Colgate

RPI suffers weekend sweep, falls to No. 9 Colgate

TROY, N.Y. – Senior Jessie Eldridge recorded a goal and an assist to lead the ninth-ranked Colgate University women's hockey team to a 4-2 victory over Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) on Senior Day at the Houston Field House. With the win, the Raiders improve to 21-8-5 overall (15-4-3 ECAC Hockey), while the Engineers drop to 13-15-5 (10-11-1 ECAC Hockey).

Colgate opened the scoring at 3:13 of the second period, when Eldridge (Barrie, ON/Toronto Jr. Aeros) found classmate Olivia Zafuto (Niagara Falls, NY/Nichols School) with an aerial pass from her own blue line. Zafuto corralled the puck between the circles in the offensive zone and lifted a shot into the top right corner of the net for her seventh goal of the season.

Junior Blake Orosz (Chase Mills, NY/Nepean Wildcats) brought the hosts even at 1-1, when she snapped home a one-time feed from senior Jaimie Grigsby (Whitby, ON/Whitby Wolves) at 13:55 of the middle stanza. The tally was Orosz's team-leading 14th goal of the year.

Eldridge gave the Raiders the lead back for good at 18:45 of the second, burying a centering feed from freshman Rosalie Demers (Blainville, PQ/Stanstead College) for her team-leading 28th goal of the season. A secondary helper went to freshman Tanner Gates (Oceanside, CA/Anaheim Lady Ducks).

The Raiders doubled their lead just two seconds before the end of the second, when junior Caroline Ross (Rochester, NY/Boston College) picked up a loose puck and fired a shot that hit an RPI defender and deflected past Engineers senior goaltender Lovisa Selander (Sollentuna, Sweden/SDE Riksserien). The goal was Ross' first of the year and second of her career, giving the visitors a 3-1 lead.

RPI pulled to within 3-2 at 6:12 of the third period on senior Grigsby's seventh of the season. Off a face-off win by sophomore Lauren Severson (Rockford, IL/Madison Capitals), Grigsby faked a shot at the top of the right circle, before moving towards the middle of the zone and beating Colgate senior netminder Julia Vandyk (Cambridge, ON/Cambridge Rivulettes) inside the right post.

Colgate senior Chelsea Jacques (Calumet, MI/Madison Capitals) added an insurance tally at 14:58 of the third, potting her first of the season from just outside the crease. Sophomore Malia Schneider (Millarville, AB/Canadian Development Team) sent the puck toward the RPI net and Jacques was there to the stuck it home.

Selander (11-15-5) finished with 37 saves, including the 4,000th of collegiate career. Vandyk (17-8-5) had 14 stops at the other end of the ice. Colgate went 1 for 4 on the power play, while RPI wound up 0 for 4.

The Engineers, who are the eighth seed in this year's ECAC Hockey Playoffs, will travel to Ithaca to take on top seed and fourth-ranked Cornell University, in a best-of-three Quarterfinal series, next weekend. Colgate hosts Harvard University in a best-of-three series in Hamilton.