Women's Ice Hockey Overcomes Early Deficit to Battle Past Robert Morris, 2-1
PITTSBURGH, Pa. – The Bobcats were locked in a battle all night with the Robert Morris Colonials as a clutch goal from senior Brittany Lyons (Canton, Mass.) proved enough in a 2-1 victory for the Quinnipiac women's ice hockey team. The senior banged home her 13th of the year off the post just 22 seconds into the final period to secure the victory off a pass from freshman Nicole Connery (Newmarket, Ontario). Senior netminder Victoria Vigilanti (Woodbridge, Ontario) battled in net throughout, making 21 saves in goal to preserve the win. Quinnipiac improves to 13-9-2 (8-5-1 ECAC Hockey) while Robert Morris drops to 10-7-2 (6-4 CHA).
Sophomore Nicole Kosta (Mississauga, Ontario) scored her second career shorthanded goal, her 10th tally of the year, to complete the Quinnipiac scoring. Connery registered her sixth assist on the season while junior Kelly Babstock (Mississauga, Ontario) recorded her 21st helper on Kosta's goal to increase her ECAC Hockey-leading point total to 42 (21 goals, 21 assists). With the victory, Quinnipiac continues their unbeaten streak against Robert Morris as the Bobcats move to 7-0 all-time against the Colonials.
Kristen Richards put Robert Morris on top early in the first period with a goal at 4:22. The play developed quickly along the back line as a Katelyn Scott back passed to Richards in front of Vigilanti who knocked home the one-timer.
Quinnipiac responded with their third shorthanded goal of the year to tie the score at 14:18 in the first. With both teams skating four-on-four, Babstock won the faceoff in her defensive end and flicked a pass up to Kosta. As the Colonial released from the box, creating a power play for Robert Morris, Kosta and Babstock had already created an odd man rush off the faceoff win. Babstock received a pass back from Kosta, crossed the blue line, passed over to Kosta as the lone Robert Morris defender played the shot, and the sophomore forward deposited the shorthanded goal into the back of the net to knot the score at 1-1.
The Bobcats took the lead just 27 seconds into the third period as Lyons scored on the team's first shift in the stanza. The play developed along the right boards as Lyons passed off to Connery near the blue line. Lyons' lost her defender and Connery found her open below the faceoff dot. The senior took the pass from Connery and her wrist shot banged off the post past Colonial goalie Kristen DiCiocco to give the Bobcats a 2-1 lead. The 13 goals this year for Lyons establishes a new single season career high as it bests her total from the 2010-11 season.
The senior netminder Vigilanti came up with the save of the night with Robert Morris on the power play late in the third period. The Colonials' Cobina Delaney ripped a slap shot from the point that deflected in front. Vigilanti was able to locate the puck through traffic and smothered the deflection as she dropped to the butterfly.
The Bobcat defense held strong in the late stages, killing off two separate Colonial power play attempts in the third frame with Vigilanti denying all 13 Robert Morris shot attempts in the last 20 minutes. Vigilanti improves to 12-7-1 on the season as she also picked up her 65th career victory.
The Bobcats wrap up their weekend series at Robert Morris tomorrow at 2:05 pm from the RMU Island Sports Center.
Contact: Maxx McNall; email@example.com