PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. – Sabrina Dobbins '18 racked up 35 saves in a stellar effort in goal for the Purple & White, however a three-goal second period was too much to overcome as the No. 6/5 Amherst College women's ice hockey team fell to No. 1/1 SUNY Plattsburgh, 5-0, in Saturday afternoon's 2016 NCAA Division III Championship First Round matchup.
With the loss, Amherst closes out the 2015-16 season with a 22-3-3 overall record. Plattsburgh State advances to the Final Four on March 18 and will take on Middlebury College at 3:30 p.m.
HOW IT HAPPENED
- After the two sides played to a scoreless first stanza, the Cardinals broke away in the second period, scoring three goals in just under three minutes.
- Plattsburgh converted on one of its three power play opportunities, while the Purple & White finished the game 0-for-4 on the power play.
- The Cardinals held the edge in shots of goal, 40-25.
- Dobbins (16-3-3) racked up 35 saves in between the pipes for the Purple & White, while Camille Leonard (25-1-0) registered 25 saves in the winning effort for Plattsburgh.
- Amherst and Plattsburgh finished the opening period in a 0-0 deadlock, with the Cardinals holding a 14-4 advantage in shots on net in the stanza.
- Dobbins made one of several clutch saves in the outing with 1:24 remaining in the first period, thwarting a breakaway opportunity by Cardinal Giovanna Senese.
- Cardinal point-leader Kayla Meneghin scored the game-winner at the 6:12 mark in the second period as she collected a behind the net pass from Melissa Sheeran and quickly sent a wrap around shot into over the pad of Dobbins.
- Plattsburgh struck again two minutes later. After back-to-back rebounds found their way back to Cardinal skaters, Melissa Ames finally converted, corralling the puck in the slot and sending a wrist shot into the netting.
- The Cardinals earned a three-goal cushion at the 9:09 mark as Melissa Sheeran recieved a pass from Meneghin in the slot and sent a backhander over the glove of the Amherst netminder.
- First-year Katelyn Pantera nearly got the Purple & White on the scoreboard two minutes into the third stanza, collecting a pass from Katie Savage '19 on a two-on-two opportunity and deflecting the puck towards goal but Leonard was up to the task.
- Mackenzie Millen extended Plattsburgh's lead to four five minutes into the third stanza. After stopping an Amherst clearing attempt, Katelyn Turk found Erin Brand's rebound and sent a pass across the zone to an open Millen on the backdoor. The score marked her third of the season.
- Senior captain Erin Martin threatened for the Purple & White at the 10:20 mark, sending a wrist shot from the high slot on goal, but Leonard was once again up to the task and nabbed the puck out of midair.
- Up a skater on the power play, Bridget Balisy tallied the final score of the contest with 54 seconds remaining in the third period.
- Alex Toupal '18 led the Purple & White with six shots on target, while Melissa Sheeran paced the Cardinals with six shots on frame.
BEYOND THE BOX SCORE
- Amherst's impressive season comes to an end as it finishes the year with a 22-3-3 overall record. Earning one of only three at-large bids to the NCAA Division III Championship, the Purple & White advanced to the First Round of the national postseason for the first time since 2012. They are now 6-5 all-time in NCAA Championship appearances.
- Plattsburgh State improved to 27-1-0 overall on the season and remain in the hunt to capture their third consecutive national championship.