HAMDEN, Conn. – One of the top scoring duos in the nation was at it again for Quinnipiac women's ice hockey as junior Kelly Babstock (Mississauga, Ontario) and sophomore Nicole Kosta (Mississauga, Ontario) combined for three goals and two assists in the Bobcat's 4-1 ECAC Hockey win over Rensselaer on Friday from High Point Solutions Arena. Senior Brittany Lyons (Canton, Mass.) added the game-winner in the second period while senior goalie Victoria Vigilanti (Woodbridge, Ontario) provided a gritty 15-save performance to lift the Bobcats. With the win the Bobcats improve to 9-7-2 (5-3-1 ECAC Hockey) while the Engineers drop to 2-11-2 (0-5 ECAC Hockey).
Quinnipiac earns their second series sweep of the Engineers in as many seasons as they earned a 3-2 win in Troy, N.Y. earlier this year. With her three points (two goals, one assist) on the evening, Babstock has now recorded back-to-back three-point outings as she came in off a two goal, one assist performance against UConn. Her ECAC Hockey leading total now moves to 35 points on the season (18 goals, 17 assists). Kosta notched another two points (one goal, one assist) on Friday as she moves her total to 28 on the season (nine goals, conference-leading 19 assists), right behind Babstock for second place in ECAC Hockey. Lyons notched her ninth goal of the season, good for a tie with Kosta for second place on the team. Juniors Erica Uden Johansson (Sundsvall, Sweden) and Amanda Colin (Burnsville, Minnesota) added their seventh and first assists of the season, respectively, while sophomore Anna Borgfeldt (Kristianstad, Sweden) chipped in her third. Vigilanti had a strong game in net with some timely saves on the way to her eighth win of the season and 61st of her career.
Kosta kicked the scoring off with her ninth goal of the season in at 6:29 in the first period. The play developed off the stick of Babstock as she deeked out an Engineer defender while behind the net to find an open Kosta to her right. The sophomore corralled the pass and her centering pass towards the crease from the left post deflected off Rensselaer goalie Kelly O'Brien and in for the game's first goal.
With the score deadlocked at 1-0 for the remainder of the first and much of the second, the Bobcat defense shined to keep the advantage. Freshman Cydney Roesler (Stittsville, Ontario) hustled back from the blue to prevent a breakaway goal as she flicked her stick in front of the Engineer skater to deny any shot-on-goal.
Moments later, Vigilanti recorded the most impressive of her 15 saves on the evening. With a host of Engineers in front of the net, the senior saved the initial shot despite the traffic and prevented the equalizer with a kick save on a full extension with her right leg pad. This marks the second consecutive game in which Vigilanti and the Bobcat defense has only allowed one goal.
Lyons added her game-winner late in the second period at 19:07 as she streaked up ice with junior Amanda Colin (Burnsville, Minnesota) to her right. The play developed after Borgfeldt won the faceoff draw up to Colin had the puck and sent a backhand centering pass that found Lyons' stick who deflected it past O'Brien for the 2-0 lead. Colin registered her first assist of the year on Lyons' goal while Borgfeldt added her third.
Heading into the third period with the lead has been vital for the Bobcats as they move to 8-1 on the year when leading after two. The Engineers however didn't make it easy as Mari Mankey scored off a nice centering pass from Eleeza Cox to close the gap to one.
Babstock and the Bobcats were up to the task however, as she scored her first of the night on a nice setup from junior Erica Uden Johansson (Sundsvall, Sweden). The puck was dumped in from the blue line by the Bobcats as Uden Johansson quickly raced to the boards, stole the puck from a Rensselaer defender, and centered in front to a wide open Babstock who lit the lamp for a much needed insurance goal.
Babstock added another with less than three minutes to go. She deflected an outlet attempt from the Engineers back line and the puck found Kosta along the boards. Her shot aimed for the far side post was stopped by Babstock on the near side post. With O'Brien sliding to the right and out of position, Babstock found herself an easy backhand goal to put her team up three.
The Bobcats welcome the Union Dutchwomen to High Point Solutions Arena tomorrow night with the first puck scheduled to drop at 4 p.m. The two side met earlier this year in Schenectady with both sides playing to a 2-2 tie.
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