Women’s Ice Hockey Caps November with 5-2 Win over Suffolk

Photo credit: Paola Brena.
Photo credit: Paola Brena.

WINCHENDON, Mass. (November 26, 2019) – The Franklin Pierce University women's ice hockey team finished off an 8-2-0 month of November in style on Tuesday night, as the Ravens headed into the holiday weekend with a 5-2 win on home ice over visiting Suffolk in non-conference play. Junior forward Haley Parker (Londonderry, N.H.) had two goals on the night, while junior forward Nicole Amato (Billerica, Mass.) and freshman forward Becca Kniss (Eden Prairie, Minn.) added a goal and an assist each for Franklin Pierce at the Jason Ritchie Ice Arena.

With the win, Franklin Pierce improves to 10-3-0 and has won three in a row and seven out of eight. With the loss, second-year program Suffolk -- which ran up a 15-9-2 mark in its inaugural season -- falls to 2-5-2.

Though Franklin Pierce piled up a 42-19 advantage in shots, it would be Suffolk which held leads of 1-0 and 2-1, as the outcome remained in doubt into the third period. The Rams opened the scoring at the 6:08 mark of the first frame, after a poke-check by junior forward Maddy Burton forced a turnover from Franklin Pierce senior defenseman Bridgette Prentiss (Buffalo, N.Y.) behind her own net. Sophomore forward Shana Cote took control of the loose puck, quickly wrapped to the right post and stuffed the puck home before sophomore goaltender Emme Ostrander (Westborough, Mass.) could get her pad to the pipe. It was Cote's fourth goal of the season, tying her for the team lead.

Franklin Pierce evened things up on a 5-on-3 advantage at 10:33. From the left side, Parker sent the puck to the middle of the blue line for Prentiss. Prentiss took a shot from there and Amato was able to deflect it home at the top of the crease for the latter's sixth goal of the campaign.

Suffolk reclaimed the lead 13:57 into the second stanza. Burton and Cote pressured the puck along the left-wing side of the Suffolk attacking end, with Cote ultimately forcing a turnover and taking control. Cote sent the puck out front, where it deflected off of freshman forward Madison Ricardo and out into the high slot. Sophomore defenseman Izzy Hendry was on the scene to track down the loose puck and immediately sent a low shot back towards the net. The puck snuck through all the traffic and slipped between the pads of Ostrander for Hendry's first collegiate goal.

Franklin Pierce used a pair of goals in the final 90 seconds of the period to turn the 2-1 deficit into a 3-2 lead before the second intermission. First, at 18:38, Parker notched the first of her two goals on the night. The play started up top with freshman defenseman Bethany Ross (Canton, Mich.), who fed Kniss on the right side. Kniss took a shot from there, which was saved, but she corralled her own rebound and circled behind the net. Once on the other side, she sent a centering pass to Parker, who buried her sixth of the year from the edge of the left circle.

Just 40 seconds later, a disastrous neutral-zone turnover for the Rams saw the puck sent straight to the stick of Amato. She flicked it ahead for Kniss, who was in all alone on a breakaway. Kniss went to her forehand as she approached the goal and popped her fifth of the season into the top-right corner for what would stand as the game-winning goal.

Franklin Pierce notched an important insurance marker on the power play at 1:35 of the third period. From the middle of the blue line, freshman defenseman Stefanie Caban (Fitchburg, Mass.) fired a pass to junior forward Marissa Massaro (Brockton, Mass.) down low on the right side. Massaro quickly shuffled a pass across the top of the crease to unattended freshman forward Katelyn Brightbill (Annville, Pa.). Brightbill banged the one-timer into the all-but-vacated net for her fifth goal of the season.

The Ravens capped the 5-2 win with an empty-net score at 19:30. A long stretch pass from her own end by Prentiss sent Parker through the neutral zone and into the offensive end. Parker snapped home her second goal of the game to finish off her second multiple-goal game of the season.

Ostrander (7-3-0) finished with 17 saves against 19 shots to pick up the win for Franklin Pierce. Freshman Julia McLellan (0-5-1) stopped 37 of 41 shots at the other end of the ice and was stuck with the loss for Suffolk.

The Ravens are off for the holiday weekend and return to the ice on Friday and Saturday, Dec. 6-7, when they travel to Long Island University for an NEWHA weekend series. Opening faceoff is set for 3 p.m. Friday in Syosset, N.Y., and 4:15 p.m. Saturday in East Meadow, N.Y.

For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (https://www.fpuravens.com). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce ice hockey apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' brand new online store (https://www.shopfpuravens.com).