With winter break fast approaching, the Plattsburgh State women’s hockey team will look to finish the semester on a high note this weekend against NESCAC opponent Trinity College from Connecticut. With winter break fast approaching, the Plattsburgh State women’s hockey team will look to finish the semester on a high note this weekend against NESCAC opponent Trinity College from Connecticut. “They play in a tough division and had a few losses right off the bat, but they’ve been playing really good teams,” head coach Kevin Houle said. “They’re as good as anyone we’ve played recently.”Trinity has a 2-4-0 overall record, but its two wins came against an NEWHL school, Buffalo State.The Cardinals dominated their own NEWHL play last weekend, beating Potsdam in back-to-back games, outscoring the Bears 12-1 while outshooting them 69-44 across both games.
Friday’s game saw PSUC rout the Bears 8-0, with seven different players having multi-point nights.Junior left wing Courtney Moriarty opened the scoring just under four minutes into the first frame. Getting the offense going early has been an issue for the Cards all season, so Houle was happy to see his team deviate from the pattern.
“We had a good first period, and we were able to carry that through the rest of the game,” Houle said. A pair of freshmen had breakout nights, with center Annie Katonka netting a hat-trick and defenseman Erin McCardle assisting on three goals. “It’s huge that they’ve started to contribute more,” Houle said. “Annie’s had lots of chances this year, so it was good to see her get on the board a few times. Erin has really come along and stepped into a fairly big role here as well.”Katonka was humble when asked about the first ever career hat trick.
“In a sense, it’s just another game in the win column, but it felt good to score,” Katonka said. “Getting to play with [Melissa] Sheeran and Kayla [Meneghin] makes it a lot easier to score.”
Senior left wing and captain Melissa Sheeran had two goals and an assist in the blowout, while junior center Mackenzie Millen also scored twice.
Junior goalie Kassi Abbott registered her third shutout of the season, stopping all 22 Bear shots.
Saturday’s game was a more low-scoring affair, with PSUC winning 4-1. Sheeran continued her strong play with a goal and an assist while fellow senior, right winger Kayla Meneghin, scored once and had two assists of her own.
Houle was happy to see Sheeran and Meneghin get back on track after a brief slump.
“They had a bit of a dry spell for a while there, so I was glad to see them get back on the board,” Houle said. “It would be nice to keep them going at a consistent rate.”
Sophomore right wing Meghan Kraus and junior left wing Ashley Songin each nabbed goals of their own in the win.
Senior goalie Brooke Wolejko stopped 21 of 22 Bear shots, earning her third win as a Card. This also marked the third split back-to-back of the season in which Abbott and Wolejko each won their respective games.
McCardle remarked how having Abbott and Wolejko behind her makes her job as a defenseman easier.
“It’s really nice to know we have two strong girls back there,” McCardle said. “We know we don’t have to be worried.”
Tomorrow’s game will be the last game for PSUC before the players go on winter break, and Houle stressed that they won’t be taking Trinity lightly.
“They’re as good as anyone we’ve played recently,” Houle said. “We can’t expect it to be an easy game. I think that any time you think that way you’ll be in for a long game no matter who you play.”
Katonka reaffirmed her coach’s sentiment.
“We just have to put everything into it,” Katonka said. “We have a long time to rest coming up, so we have to go hard for the next couple days and then call it a week.”
Email Ben Watson at firstname.lastname@example.org