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Colgate snapped its six-game winless streak with a hard-fought 4-3 road win over No. 5 St. Lawrence in overtime on Friday. Bailey Larson scored the winning goal 3:12 into overtime to earn the Raiders two important ECAC Hockey points.
“Great team win. I think, more than anything, it feels good for the group right now,” said Colgate coach Greg Fargo. ”When you’re going through a stretch where you’re not getting results, its easy to get down or question things, and tonight, I thought we played as well as we have for the last six games, and we got a bounce there at the end. It just feels to be good on top again.”
It was Larson’s OT winner, a seeing-eye snap shot that beat Grace Harrison through a screen, that allowed Colgate to leave Appleton Arena on top. It came off a faceoff win for the Raiders, and then a SLU turnover that left the sophomore open with the puck just above the left faceoff dot.
“We’d been going hard all game, battling and throwing pucks on net, and that time, it finally went our way,” said Larson. “We’ve been going through a hard time, and we really needed a win. We’d been playing well and doing the right things, but the wins hadn’t come our way. This is what we needed to turn things around.”
Colgate jumped out to a lead early in the second period, after Grace Harrison and Julia Vandyk stole the show in the first period, stopping 16 combined shots. Cat Quirion scored from the point just 1:19 into the middle frame, and it took only 44 seconds for Megan Sullivan to light the lamp for the Raiders and give the visitors a 2-0 lead.
Hannah Miller took a breakout pass from Kirsten Padalis and knifed through the offensive zone, beating one defender and then Vandyk with a wrist shot at the 11:26 mark of the second to get the Saints on board. Nadine Edney scored two goals in a row for the Saints to put SLU ahead. After tying the score with 1:15 left in the second, Edney picked the top corner from the right faceoff dot for her ninth of the season just 3:37 into the third.
Shelby Perry tied it for the Raiders at 9:10 of the third, taking a pass through the slot from Lauren Wildfang and beating an outstretched Harrison for the lone power-play goal of the game. That brought Colgate even with SLU, forcing overtime.
After the loss, Saints coach Chris Wells mentioned turnovers as a reason his Saints lost for just the third time all season.
“They made us turn the puck over more tonight than we have in a long time, and they were able to capitalize on two of the turnovers,” he said. The overtime winner, most notably, came off a turnover.
“After that third goal, they really took it to us. They’ve had a couple of bad bounces over the last few weeks, but everything sort of evens out, especially when you’re that good of a team. They got the result that they deserved and earned tonight.”
Colgate will ride its newfound momentum into a matchup with Clarkson on Saturday, while the Saints play host to Cornell, who defeated the Golden Knights, 2-1, on Friday.