A Look Back
Cornell began its road weekend with a strong first period. After a burst of five even-strength goals, with Jillian Saulnier starting the onslaught, Taylor Woods adding two, Emily Fulton grabbing one, and freshman Kaitlin Doering notching her first goal of the season, the first frame ended with Cornell up 5-0. The second frame was a complete turnaround. Princeton showed that they were a team to be reckoned with as they notched four goals of their own, including one on a 5-on-3 Tiger advantage, another power-play goal, and two even-strength tallies.
As the final frame began, Princeton was down by only a single goal. They put up a huge fight, taking more shots on goal than they had in the previous periods, but Lauren Slebodnick did not let a single goal pass her again as the Lady Rouge skated to a tough 5-4 win to stay perfect on the season and pick up two more ECAC points.
The next day saw a completely different game. Instead of a game in which nine goals were scored, only two would find the back of the net this time. The first frame was even, though Quinnipiac outshot the Lady Rouge by a 13-8 margin. The second frame saw something that has yet to happen this season: a shorthanded goal. The Bobcats took the lead on a shorthanded breakaway to put them up 1-0, and that's where the frame would end. Halfway through the final frame, Emily Fulton was on a breakaway when she was taken down just before her shot was about to ring. For the first time this season, Cornell got a penalty shot. Emily Fulton skated from the red line and poked the puck through the netminder's legs to even the score.
The remainder of the regulation, in spite of the chances by both teams, ended with the score knotted. Overtime commenced and it ended the same way it began, even. Cornell ended the game with a tie and in spite of that, ended the weekend still atop the standings.
Next week brings a tough test at home with the Capital Region teams visiting Lynah for the first time this season. Let's look at how they've been doing thus far and what the Big Red needs to do to keep their spot at the top of the ECAC standings.
A Look Forward
RPI might be 2-6-1 on the season, but that is no reason to discount the Engineers. Of their six losses, three of them were by a single goal, two of those in overtime. None of their games have been a blowout, either. And their two wins have been against two strong teams, the CHA's Robert Morris, and conference rival, Harvard. RPI's win against Harvard last weekend was a huge one in the standings. In addition to that, it proved that the Engineer Women can hang with the best teams.
If Cornell takes RPI too lightly, the Engineers have a huge chance to take another win out of a top team. RPI has scored an average of just under two goals per game, and aside from their season-opening win, they have not scored more than two in a game. RPI relies on solid goaltending, keeping shot totals down, and capitalizing on their opportunities when given. Their stats are misleadingly mediocre for a team that is such a difficult one to face. They beat Harvard last weekend and that is something that will likely propel them to feel confidence against the Lady Rouge this week.
Union as a team has typically been the bottom dweller of the ECAC. Already, they are on track to beat the program record for wins. They're at 4-6-0 on the season, including a season-opening win against UConn, wins against Providence and Penn State, and a league-win against power Dartmouth. Union's win against Dartmouth should send a message to Big Red players and coaches alike. The team has noted how even the league was this year, and it is proving to be even more so than previously thought.
Any team can win on any given night. No nights can be taken off this year. Ten of the twelve teams have already scored an ECAC point this season and each night will be huge in terms of points. To defeat Union, Cornell will need to beat Union's netminder. Lundgren was solid last year and has only continued to grow. They also will need to take advantage of power-play opportunities and limit Union's man-advantage situations.
14 - Fulton
10 - Campbell
8 - Cudmore & Saulnier
7 - Woods
6 - Gagliardi
4 - Leck & Poudrier
3 - Bunton & Doering
2 - DeBruin & Murray
1 - Richardson, & Slebodnick