Jan. 18, 2008
ERIE, Pa. - Valerie Chouinard's power-play goal at 6:35 of the third period broke a 2-2 tie, propelling No. 6 Mercyhurst to a 5-3 win over Yale Friday night at the Mercyhurst Ice Center. The Lakers' three-goal third spoiled another outstanding effort by senior goaltender Shivon Zilis, who made 45 saves.
Zilis made 50 saves when these two teams met last season, helping Yale nearly overcome a 55-15 shot disadvantage. The Lakers entered that game ranked No. 1 in the country and overcame an early 3-2 Yale lead to win 5-4. Friday night's game unfolded in similar fashion, as power-play goals by junior forwards Maggie Westfal and Crysti Howser gave the Bulldogs a 2-0 lead in the first. But the Lakers outshot Yale 15-7 in that period and would finish the game with a 50-15 shot advantage that could not be overcome.
Mercyhurst rallied in the second on goals by Meghan Agosta and Geena Prough before putting the game away in the third period. The Lakers' potent power play, which entered the game third in the country at 25.7 percent, had been held in check by Zilis and the Yale penalty killing on its first seven chances. But with time winding down on the eighth power play Chouinard scored to break the deadlock.
Jesse Scanzano extended the lead to 4-2 with four minutes to play, but junior forward Sarah Tittman tallied 30 seconds later to get the Bulldogs right back in it. It was Tittman's 11th goal of the season -- a 10-goal improvement over her total from last year, making her just the third Bulldog to pull off that feat in the last 18 years.
Agosta scored with two minutes to play to put the game out of reach. It was her 27th goal of the year, extending her NCAA lead in that category.
Howser and Tittman each had a goal and an assist for the Bulldogs. Sophomore defenseman Alyssa Clarke, freshman forward Bray Ketchum, freshman defenseman Samantha MacLean and junior forward Kristen Stupay each had one assist.
Mercyhurst (16-5-2) is now 9-1 at home.
Yale (7-7-4) visits Niagara Saturday night at 7:00 p.m.
report by Sam Rubin '95 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Yale Sports Publicity