Freshman Forward Nets Her Fourth Goal; Sophomore Goalie Makes 30 Saves
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Two teams that were part of a four-way tie for ninth and were looking to make a move into one of ECAC Hockey's eight playoff spots met Friday night at Messa Rink … and in the end left with not much decided. Freshman forward Jamie Haddad scored and sophomore goalie Jaimie Leonoff made 30 saves as Yale and Union skated to a 1-1 tie. The two teams thus slip into a tie for 10th, as RPI beat Brown 3-0 in the other game featuring teams that were part of the four-way tie for ninth. Both Yale and Union are now one point out of eighth place.
Union (3-8-3, 0-4-3 ECAC Hockey) held a 9-7 shot advantage in the first period, but it was the Bulldogs who came out of the frame with the lead. While Leonoff stopped every shot she saw, the Bulldogs got one past Shenae Lundberg when Haddad poked one into the net at the 6:07 mark. Freshman forward Janelle Ferrara assisted on the play, once again illustrating the chemistry between the two classmates from Massachusetts who played together at Assabet Valley and are now linemates at Yale.
"No question, they know where each other is at on the ice at all times," said Yale head coach Joakim Flygh of Ferrara and Haddad. "You can tell they've played together for a long time."
Yale killed off the only penalty of the period, with Leonoff stopping a tricky deflection attempt by forward Christine Valente.
Another penalty on the Bulldogs helped Union gain some offensive momentum early in the second period, but Yale killed off that penalty and began generating some more offense midway through the period. Senior forward Alyssa Zupon carried the puck behind the net and backhanded a pass into the crease for freshman forward Hanna Åström, but that shot was stopped. Right after that a penalty on the Dutchwomen enabled Yale to keep up the offensive pressure, with senior forward Danielle Moncion sending a slap shot just wide and freshman defenseman Kate Martini having a shot blocked. Lundberg then made two more saves on Moncion shots, including one with freshman forward Janelle Ferrara right in front of her.
That Yale power play came to a premature end with a Bulldog penalty that wound up proving costly. Leonoff made a save on a slap shot from the right circle by defenseman Ashley Johnston, then dove to cover a loose puck just outside the crease after a wide slap shot by defenseman Alex Tancrell-Fontaine hit the boards behind the goal. After another save on a shot through traffic by defenseman Kelly McGrath, Leonoff was screened on the next shot by Tancrell-Fontaine and it slipped past her to tie the game 1-1 at 7:03.
The Bulldogs had the final scoring chance of the second, but a shot by senior forward Jen Matichuk after a nice feed from junior defenseman Aurora Kennedy was partially blocked and the teams skated into the second intermission tied 1-1.
The Yale penalty kill was put to the test again five minutes into the third. After a save by Leonoff six seconds into the penalty kill, Union maintained the puck in the Bulldog zone. After several failed attempts to clear by the Bulldogs, Kennedy tied the puck up along the boards to kill some time and junior defenseman Tara Tomimoto was eventually able to skate the puck out of the zone. Moncion later disrupted a Union pass to help finish off the kill.
Haddad drew a penalty on Union with 11:10 to play, and the Bulldogs had several opportunities to get the go-ahead goal -- including a span of several seconds when one of Union's players was missing a stick. After missing an attempted one-timer, the Bulldogs caught a tough break when the puck went all the way down to the other end of the ice -- and Leonoff's attempt to send it right back wound up as an icing call. Tomimoto then had a shot blocked, and Lundberg made a save on a shot by Martini, and the Yale power play came to an end.
Leonoff denied Union's last good chance in regulation with a save on a shot by forward Emma Rambo with 2:31 to play. Union had the only shots on goal in overtime -- four of them -- and Leonoff stopped all of those as well. Lundberg finished with 20 saves.
"Both teams worked hard," said Flygh. "It would have been nice if we had executed on the power play, as Union obviously did. But I thought we played hard and gave a good effort."
Yale (2-10-1, 1-5-0 ECAC Hockey) visits RPI Saturday at 4:00 p.m. in the final game before a one-month break.
Report by Sam Rubin '95 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity