Fillier scores twice as Princeton falls to Minnesota

Fillier scores twice as Princeton falls to Minnesota

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. -- Sarah Fillier scored twice for Princeton but the Gophers net the game winner in the third period and then tacked on two empty-net goals in a 5-2 game at Ridder Arena in the NCAA Quarterfinal this afternoon.

The freshman duo of Fillier and Maggie Connors teammed up to light the lamp just 5:26 into the game. On a quick transition Fillier flipped the puck across the ice to Connors on the left wing. Connors skated into the circle and sent the puck back to Fillier who had broken by her defender and had a wide open back door.

Sarah Potomak answered back less than two minutes later, on an unfortunate bounce. Stephanie Neatby made a pad save on Potomak but the puck rolled down off the toe and just over the line. Neatby made a big save on Kelly Pannek as she attempted to slide across the crease and stuff one in. Pannek had a chance to score again three minutes later but Neatby closed in to cut off the angle and Pannek shed the puck to the right wing were Amy Potomak backhanded in the go-ahead goal.

Freshman Mariah Keopple helped Princeton gain possession of the puck along the half wall, chipping it up ahead to Carly Bullock. Bullock slotted the puck to Fillier and she rifled one in blocker side on Sydney Scobee to even the game at 2-2 at 2:43 of the second period.

Neatby had arguably her best save at 15:40 of the second as she slide across the paint to hold onto a Taylor Williamson second-chance effort.

Shannon Griffin had a solid attempt before the close of the middle frame, when she skated into the zone and fired one on Scobee. Scobee fumbled the puck and dropped in and Connors was there to take a whack it before the official blew the whistle.

Princeton had the only power-play opportunity of the game, 1:38 into the third, but the No. 1 ranked special team couldn't get anything going as the teams continued to play knotted at 2-2.

Pannek net the game-winning goal at 11:47 when the Gophers came in on quick transition and Neatby was taken down on a collision with the puck popping free for the trailer.

Princeton put the extra attacker on to try to tie the game back up and Connors and Frankel both had excellent chances before the Gophers got possession and sent the puck down the length of the ice into the empty net. Minnesota added a second empty-net goal with 13.9 seconds remaining.

Neatby finished the game with 34 saves, while Scobee stopped 24 shots.

Princeton's season ends with a 20-8-5 overall record, an Ivy title, a 20-game unbeaten streak during the season and the best ranking in program history.