Cornell Moves on to ECAC Hockey Championship With Double OT Win

Cornell Moves on to ECAC Hockey Championship With Double OT Win

ITHACA, N.Y. – The Cornell women's hockey team is moving on to the ECAC Hockey title game.
 
The top-seeded Big Red erased an early 2-0 deficit, to come back and beat fourth-seeded Princeton, 3-2, in double overtime of the ECAC Hockey semifinal. Micah Zandee-Hart netted the game-winner 1:22 into the second additional frame to send the Big Red to the championship game for the eighth time in program history.
 
Princeton got on the board with a power play goal from Claire Thompson just under eight minutes into the game. The tally came 1:02 into the power play after the Tigers passed it around the perimeter of the offensive zone. Karlie Lund sent a pass up to Thompson, who fired the puck home.
 
The score held for the remainder of the first to give the Tigers the 1-0 advantage at the first intermission, despite the Big Red outshooting them 11-4 in the opening frame.
 
Princeton came out firing in the second, notching the period's first eight shots on net, including Carly Bullock's goal that put the Tigers up 2-0. After the Big Red struggled to clear the zone, Annie MacDonald found possession of the puck and sent it forward to Bullock, who beat senior goaltender Marlene Boissonnault with the backhander.
 
Following the goal, Lindsay Browning entered the game in place of Boissonnault.
 
Gillis Frechette got the Big Red on the board with 6:35 remaining in the second. Grace Graham brought the puck into the offensive and fired the puck to opposite side to Zandee-Hart. The junior defenseman fired the puck back to the other side where she connected with the Frechette who found the back of the net to bring the Big Red within one. 
 
Maddie Mills evened the score with 12:09 left in regulation. The play started back behind the Big Red's net with Lindsay Browning stopping the puck along the boards, but MacDonald forced Browning to retreat back to the net, as Kendra Nealey shielded her MacDonald from the puck and ended up shoveling it over Kristin O'Neill. The junior forward sent the puck forward to Mills who entered the zone. Mills faked out Princeton goaltender Stephanie Neatby and put home the backhander.
 
Following Mills' goal, both teams had several quality chances in the third. With just over seven and half minutes remaining in regulation, the Neatby came up with a big save on straightaway chance from Devon Facchinato. Princeton had a few chances in transition off of Cornell turnovers, including one from Sarah Fillier which she had the defenders beat. Zandee-Hart hustled back dove back just in time to disrupt the chance with 5:25 left.
 
Both teams came out firing in the opening minutes of the extra frame. Just over a minute into overtime, Mills had a straightway chance on a find from O'Neill turned away by Neatby. Roughly a minute and half later the Tigers had one of their top chances of the first overtime period. Fillier had a shot on net that Browning stopped, but couldn't corral. MacDonald jumped on the rebound but Browning made the save.
 
The trend continued throughout the first overtime period with each team's chances coming in spurts, as the Tigers had 14 shots on net and the Big Red totaled nine. But after 80 minutes of play, no winner was decided.
 
Zandee-Hart wasted little time in the second overtime scoring the game-winner. After Lenka Serdar and Pippy Gerace had their shots blocked by Tigers defenders, Paige Lewis tipped the puck and it settle back to Zandee-Hart near the blue line. The Saanichton, British Columbia, native fired the shot home.
 
The Big Red awaits the winner of the second semifinal game between Colgate and Clarkson in the title game at 2 p.m. Sunday in Lynah Rink. The winner will receive an automatic bid into the NCAA tournament.