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Pucks have been dropped
A number of programs’ seasons are underway. Most teams are practicing, others have played exhibitions, and a few have started bona fide NCAA competition. Let’s look at the results of the latter.

Scanlan makes history at Bemidji State
Under new coach James Scanlan, Bemidji State opened its season with a road sweep at Robert Morris. The Beavers had never started with two wins in any of their previous 16 seasons.

The outcome is disappointing for the Colonials, who received votes in USCHO’s preseason poll and were ranked for much of last season until a late slump.

Both games were up for grabs in the third period. On Friday, BSU seized a 2-0 lead by the game’s midpoint on goals by Whitney Wivoda and Madison Hutchinson, only to see Rebecca Vint and Erin Staniewski score to forge a 2-2 tie with 8:08 gone in the final frame. Stephanie Anderson scored the eventual winning goal on a power play four minutes later, and Kaitlyn Tougas and Megan Lushanko added insurance goals in a 5-2 Bemidji State win.

Robert Morris struck first in Saturday’s rematch, with Staniewski converting on a power play with 15:41 elapsed. Freshman Erin Deters, making her first collegiate start for the Beavers, slammed the door the rest of the way and finished with 29 saves. Jenessa Philipczyk knotted the score a period later, and rookie Alexis Joyce put BSU ahead to stay 7:16 into the third period. Anderson salted that victory with an empty-net goal; she was one of five Beavers to turn in two-point weekends.

Black Bears earn first conference points
Only one league game was played on the weekend, and Maine became the first team to assume a conference lead with a 2-1 win over Hockey East foe New Hampshire. St. Lawrence transfer Margo Lund opened the scoring at 3:39 to give UNH its first lead of the Hilary Witt era, but Hailey Browne answered eight minutes later. Kelsey MacSorley’s second-period tally proved decisive. Meghann Treacy turned aside 25 shots to earn the victory.

Bulldogs better Huskies
No. 10 Minnesota-Duluth saw its season get off to a rocky start, falling into an early 3-0 hole at Connecticut, with Sarah MacDonnell scoring twice for the hosts. Starting goaltender Kayla Black was yanked from the game after allowing three goals on six shots in the opening 14:38. Karissa Grapp played the remainder of the period, and Black returned to the crease after intermission. Her team clawed its way back, scoring twice in the second and twice in the third, with sophomores Lara Stalder and Ashleigh Brykaliuk each netting a pair. Just 44 seconds after Brykaliuk put UMD ahead with a short-hander, Margaret Zimmer capitalized on the same power play for UConn. Neither team could find the net in the five-minute overtime, and each had to settle for a 4-4 verdict. The Huskies earned the tie in large part thanks to Elaine Chuli’s 54 saves.

Black had a far less turbulent outing on Saturday, stopping all 27 shots she faced. Power-play goals by Zoe Hickel and Tea Villali in the second period and an empty-net goal by freshman Michelle Lowenheilm boosted UMD to a 3-0 triumph.

Badgers survive absences
No. 2 Wisconsin gained a sweep at Lindenwood by scores of 5-1 and 6-0. Neither the absence of five Badgers who were attending a Hockey Canada camp in Calgary, Alberta, nor 91 saves by the Lions’ Nicole Hensley, could derail the visitors. Senior Karley Sylvester led the attack with six points, and classmate Katy Josephs scored three times and was one of three Badgers with a four-point series. UMD transfer Shara Jasper had the only marker for the hosts. Jorie Walters got the start in the second game and earned the shutout.