With the semester layoff in the background, the nation’s top four teams were back at it in earnest in their collective return. No.1 Plattsburgh hosted No.3 Norwich and No. 2 Middlebury invited No.4 Elmira to the Green Mountain State for a Saturday night contest. The latter proved the more entertaining of the two.

At Plattsburgh’s Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena, Cardinals goalie Sydney Aveson penciled in her eighth whitewash of the season and 25th of her storied career in a 6-0 battering of the Cadets. Aveson made 27 saves in the lopsided affair. Plattsburgh killed of all five Norwich power-play opportunities, improving their seasonal statistical perfection to a brilliant 42-of-42.

Middlebury’s Katie Mandigo score 1:50 into overtime propelled the No. 2 Panthers to a 3-2 win over No. 4 Elmira Saturday night at Kenyon Arena. The Soaring Eagles gained a tenuous 2-1 edge midway through the second period on a tally by Briana Saltstone at 10:57, but the host club drew even on Pam Schulman’s second goal of the season with 7:44 remaining in regulation. In addition to outshooting the opposition 31-23, Middlebury played its first penalty-free contest of the season.

Pointers split first test of 2014
Wisconsin-Stevens Point (No.5) split with St. Norbert in a weekend set in which each road team prevailed. Pointers goalie Janna Beilke-Skoug recorded her 25th career win in Friday’s 3-1 victory. The following afternoon at Ice Hawks Arena, St. Norbert’s Rachel Koppang broke a 1-1 tie with the lone score in the middle period as the Green Knights secured a 3-1 win as well.

Tommies Maine adventure
St. Thomas returned from break with a 3-1 win over host Bowdoin Sunday afternoon. The Tommies two-game Eastern trip concludes Monday with a matchup with Massachusetts-Boston. The Tommies ended a three-game winless streak with the positive result. Sophomore forward Karina Marette sent home the game-winning goal with 9:00 remaining in the third period. Senior goalie Alise Riedel upped her record to 6-1-1 with the 25-save outing.

Tournament time
Both Massachusetts-Boston and St. Michael’s prevailed at their own tournaments this weekend, and in the process garnered a number of program “firsts.”

The Beacons captured the Codfish Bowl title after six previous years of coming up empty-handed. Further north, the Purple Knights eradicated themselves from a winless season with a 5-1 defeat of Nichols at Cairns Arena on Saturday in the deciding game of the St. Michael’s DoubleTree Hockey Classic.

St. Michael’s, 0-9-0 going into weekend action, battled Sacred Heart to a scoreless tie in its opener on Friday. Purple Knights freshman goaltender Tina Frasca earned her first career shutout, making a season-high 37 stops. Pioneers goalie Alexius Schutt finished with 31 saves.

Sacred Heart rebounded less than 24 hours later, completing a 2-1 win over Plymouth State. Schutt mirrored her effort from the previous game, registering 31 saves in the victory.

The Purple Knights’ Amanda Kempainen registered the 11th hat trick in program history in the triumph over the Pioneers. Kempainen (4-1-5), a sophomore forward, had one goal in 15 games a year ago for her club.

The Beacons ran their unbeaten string to five games with a 2-0 win over Connecticut College in the championship game of the Codfish. Tournament MVP, defenseman Samantha Fallon got the game-winner 7:32 into the opening period and the Beacons defense, bolstered by the play of goalie sophomore Casey Schaejbe (29 saves), took over from there. Schaejbe lowered her GAA to 1.58 with the performance.

  • Anon

    The officials required a security escort out of Houston Field House after the Cornell RPI game? that is a tantalizing comment, can you expand?

    • FD8

      It has been expanded well enough on the RPI season thread within the forums. In short: Don’t make a hostile crowd feel like they were hosed, especially when the event involves small throwable giveaways.

      • Guest

        the Without a Peer blog has more information.

        • Anon

          Wow, that ECAC guy sounds like he is feeling a bit defensive if you believe the eyewitness accounts!

          I wonder how much of this stems back to the Union game in November, when Appert played video at the press conference….

          and he does have a good point about the call on Foss…how do you commit interference if you check the guy with the puck?

  • Skennys2145

    I just checked the box score for the game- Cornell had 35 penalty minutes compared to RPI’s 24.
    RPI had a 2 man advantage in the second period and a 5 minute major advantage in the third/ OT.
    Sounds like Cornell fans should have been the angry ones!

    • Guest

      It’s not just the total penalty minutes, you’d have to have seen some of it….three of the calls were totally bizarre, I have the game on tape from NHL network broadcast and on one play the Cornell player dragged the RPI player down at center ice while the ref from behind the goal called the RPI player for interference….because of that ref’s vantage point, he could not see the Cornell player grabbing Brutlag’s jersey….and then to call interference on someone when he checks the player with the puck?

      RPI did blow it on the 5 on 3, no doubt.

      • correction

        Correction: I mis-typed above: it was a classic soccer play, the other player is going past you, so you grab that player’s jersey and pull him into you and then you fall down and the other player gets called for a foul. You see it all the time in soccer; it was the first time i’ve ever seen it in college hockey though. Nice play by the Cornell player, it worked and it turned the game around for them.

  • Guest

    Harvard, who is terrible, knocks off perennial ranked power BU in the Beanpot? EZAC no more. I think any ECAC team should be respected out of conference at this point.

  • Support the Stripes

    Is it me or does Seth Appert seem to cry foul on the officials everytime RPI loses a game? It must a big a giant red conspiracy against RPI. The guy needs to get a hold of himself. And for every game he seems to have a compliant on, he gets a make up call. The Union/RPI game at RPI was a joke. A major penalty called with 2 minutes left against Union and then another minor penalty called in OT against Union. Didn’t hear Nate Leaman say a word. Appert needs to zip it. Officials make mistakes and they make good calls too. He should blame his players when he loses.

    • Bystander

      The Phil Jackson school of mind games?

      actually it is not “every” time it is only when the call is egregiously bad and backed up by videotape evidence.

      If the league could use these as training sessions to help the refs improve it would create a different attitude all around, instead the league is ‘never criticize the officials ever no matter what.’

    • burgie12

      Leaman did complain, noting the extreme difference in the number of powerplays that Union and Rensselaer received (You should check out the first part of this video by Schott: And, you’ll note that there are many games that RPI loses / ties / throws away where he complements the opposing team or states that his team did not play well. For example, Appert had no negative comments about the officials after the loss to Colgate or the loss to Cornell in Ithaca, the Engineers’ two most recent losses. (I could probably go further, but since you’re cherry-picking data, I will, too.)

      So, your sweeping generalizations are absolutely wrong and very unfounded.

  • Viking

    SLU is always tough.
    Good goal tending!