OT win gets Big Green women’s hockey to .500 mark

  • Vermont's Sini Karjalainen, left, defends Dartmouth's Catherine Trevors as Trevors pushes the puck towards the UVM goal in the first period of their game in Hanover, N.H, on Nov. 9, 2021. (Valley News - Geoff Hansen) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. Geoff Hansen

  • A shot on goal by Dartmouth's Tiffany Hill is blocked by netminder Jessie McPherson in the first period of their game in Hanover, N.H, on Nov. 9, 2021. (Valley News - Geoff Hansen) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. Geoff Hansen

  • Dartmouth head coach Liz Keady Norton speaks with players, from left, Tiffany Hill, Gabby Billing, Laura Fuoco, Annie King, CC Bowlby and Maggie Emerson during a brief break in the action in their game against Vermont in Hanover, N.H, on Nov. 9, 2021. (Valley News - Geoff Hansen) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. Geoff Hansen

  • Vermont's Maude Poulin-Labelle, left, and Dartmouth's Celine Pietraszek collide while vying for the puck during the first period of their game in Hanover, N.H., on Nov. 9, 2021. (Valley News - Geoff Hansen) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. Geoff Hansen

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 11/9/2021 10:36:01 PM
Modified: 11/9/2021 10:36:05 PM

HANOVER — The Dartmouth College women’s hockey program might just be building up some positive momentum in the first year of the Liz Keady Norton era.

The Big Green (3-3-0) were less than two minutes away from a frustrating loss to Vermont (4-4-1) on Tuesday night, highlighted by their inability to solve the Catamounts’ penalty kill. But they got one more chance when Vermont’s Maude Poulin-Labelle was sent to the penalty box for cross-checking with 1:56 left in regulation.

Dartmouth’s sixth power play of the night turned out to be the charm.

Senior captain and center Gabby Billing found the back of the net off a rebound to send the game to overtime, and freshman center Lauren Messier put home the winner on a breakaway in the extra session to give the Big Green a 3-2 victory and their first winning streak of the season.

“(Vermont) has a great penalty kill and they were aggressive, but on the previous power plays we had so many chances,” Norton said. “Our puck movement was really good tonight. I felt like they were in it. I was confident in them.”

The Vermont penalty kill entered the night 18-for-19 on the season, and they made it 19-for-20 just past the halfway point of the first period. The Catamounts scored the opening goal moments later, with Lily Holmes beating Big Green freshman goaltender Maggie Emerson.

Dartmouth evened the score less than a minute after falling behind. Messier notched the first goal of her career, with junior left wing Celine Pietraszek and sophomore defender Brooke Schroeder contributing assists.

“It was kind of a scramble,” Messier said. “It was a funny rebound, and I was able to pop it in there. Celine jumped on me. It was a really great feeling for my first career goal.”

The 1-1 deadlock held up through the rest of the first period and the entirety of the second. Emerson helped keep it that way, with 10 of her 25 saves coming in the second period.

“She showed up here ready to go,” Norton said. “She’s a competitor. She wants to win, and she wants to be the best version of herself for our team every day.”

After killing off consecutive penalties early in the third, Vermont turned defense into offense to retake the lead five minutes into the period. Poulin-Labelle fired a shot past Emerson, and the Big Green were chasing a goal once more.

It finally came with 75 seconds to spare. Sophomore defender Annie King’s shot from just in front of the blue line was saved, as was sophomore right wing Tiffany Hill’s initial rebound. But the puck caromed back to Billing, who one-timed it past Catamounts goaltender Jessie McPherson for her third goal of the year.

“We were all just trying to pound it in,” Billing said. “It plopped out right in the middle, and I saw a seam up in the top corner and I just tried to put it up there.”

Both teams had chances early in overtime, with the 3-on-3 format leaving plenty of open ice. Vermont nearly won it with a shot from close range by Regan Miller, but after Emerson’s save, Messier found the puck with nobody but McPherson to beat. She went top shelf to put an end to the proceedings.

The Big Green return to conference play with back-to-back road tests this weekend, at Brown on Friday and Yale on Saturday.

“There’s still a lot of work to be done,” Norton said. “My hope is that we keep chipping away at the culture here, at the work ethic, at the tradition that there has been in the past.”

Benjamin Rosenberg can be reached at brosenberg@vnews.com or 603-727-3302.




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