Women's Ice Hockey Topples Archrival Williams 4-2 on the Road

WILLIAMSTOWN, MA - The  #4-ranked Amherst College women's ice hockey team (5-0-0) was too much for the Williams to contain, as the Lord Jeffs rolled to a 4-2 win. The Jeffs speedy and evasive skating prowess caught the Williams defense scrambling back into position, forcing the Ephs to commit nine total penalties.

These penalties proved costly in the first period, as the Jeffs were able to convert on 2 of their 4 power-play opportunities. Junior forward Michelle McGann (New Berlin, WI) put in a one-timer in front of the net at 8:05, off a strong feed from behind the net by sophomore forward Courtney Hanlon (Fulleton, CA). A second power-play goal came with just :12 left in the period, courtesy of a slap-shot from the point by first-year defenseman Stephanie Clegg (Woburn, MA), as Hanlon knocked home the rebound for her second point of the game and her third goal of the season.

"Nine penalties is a lot to overcome," recognized Ephs third-year head coach Shannon Bryant. "Regardless, I like how our team responded to most of these situations during this game. We fell apart a little bit in a coupleof key moments and that was the difference."

After a difficult first, the Ephs responded with breakaway goal early in the second (2:25), netted by Tracey Ferriter, who put in a rebound past Jeff goalie Krystyn Elek (Summerville, SC) off a Hannah Systrom wrister. But the team's hopes of creeping back into the game were thoroughly shaken after consecutive even-strength Amherst goals, nearly within a minute of each other. Senior forward and co-captain Lindsey Harrington (Westford, MA) (11:50) and sophomore forward Brittney Evans (Edina, MN) (13:03) found the net on 2-on-1 and 3-on-2 odd-man rushes respectively, giving the Jeffs a three-goal lead.

Despite generating only 13 shots on goal, the Ephs were able to score twice, their second goal delivered by none other than the team's leading scorer Tracy Ferrtier, who scored her fifth goal of the season (second of the game) at 5:01 into the third period on a breakaway, top-shelf wrist shot. But once again, the team fell short, unable to overcome the combined efforts of Amherst netminders Krystyn Elek and Sinead Murphy(Rochester, MN), who split time for the Jeffs in this game, each allowing one goal. Ephs goalie Sara Plunkett made several brilliant saves in net to keep her team close, but tonight the team's offense could not enough to keep pace.

"We played 60 minutes of high-intensity hockey tonight," praised Bryant, "and I think if we come out and play like this tomorrow [against Conn. College] we have a solid chance. Amherst is a fast team that's solid on the puck, and I'm happy with our effort. We need to bring this same effort to the rink every game."

Amherst will travel to face Middlebury tomorrow on the road for a 3 p.m. game.