At first glance, the scores of the Colgate women’s hockey team’s two games last weekend more closely resemble those of football games. However, the Raider women proved they could be just as dominant as the football team, if not more so, by defeating their opponents by a combined score of 16-0 last weekend. Although Sunday’s 7-0 exhibition win over Brock University did not count in the standings, Saturday’s 9-0 victory over Robert Morris gives the Raiders a 4-3-2 overall record.
In Saturday’s match against Robert Morris, the Raiders exploded right from the start, out-shooting the Colonials, 17-1, in the first period. Six minutes into the contest, first-year defenseman Elin Brown sent a perfect pass to junior Carly McNaughton, who was able to beat Robert Morris goalie Quinn Caggiula for the first of many Raider goals.
Less than three minutes later, senior forward Allison Paiano scored her first goal of the game during Colgate’s first power play opportunity. Senior center Becky Irvine and junior defender Tara French were credited with assists.
With 35 seconds remaining in the first period, Colgate capitalized on another power play chance. French launched a shot that Caggiula managed to block, but Brown tipped in the rebound to give Colgate a comfortable 3-0 lead heading into the second period.
From that point, the Raiders continued to gain momentum, as Irvine, Paiano and first-year Sam Hunt dominated the second period. Three minutes in, Hunt picked up a loose puck and launched it over Caggiula’s shoulder. Barely two minutes later, Hunt sent a pass to Paiano, who found the back of the net again. Brown and Irvine also added goals just a minute apart to put Robert Morris far away in the third period.
Paiano tallied a career-high six points during the Raiders’ domination of Robert Morris, tallying two goals and four assists. The Raiders definitely took advantage of Robert Morris, a school that is in its inaugural year of fielding a women’s hockey team.
Sunday’s performance against Brock was equally impressive. Although the game was only an exhibition, the Raiders played with determination against a team ranked in the top 10 of the Canadian National polls. Sophomore Cassie Reid led the way for the Raiders by registering a natural hat trick, her first career three-goal game, in a six-minute span of the first period.
The Raiders kept on the attack in the second period. Reid sent a pass to sophomore Mallory Johnston in front of the crease to put Colgate up 4-0 two minutes into the second period. Brock’s defense tightened for the remainder of the period, holding Colgate to seven shots and no goals.
Three minutes into the third period, Hunt connected on a pass from Paiano, slamming a shot into the upper right corner. Two minutes later, Paiano bounced the puck off Brock goalie Sara Kirchner and into the net. With just over eight minutes left in the game, French sent a ripper past Kirchner to finish the scoring barrage.
Raider head coach Scott Wiley has been impressed with the powerful performances from his team in recent weeks.
“Our lines have really started to click and we are getting production from a variety of players on all three lines,” Wiley said. “Our power play is really starting to put pressure on teams and our penalty kill has really tightened up over the last few weeks.”
Likewise, the players are excited but intent on preparing for next week’s series against Niagara.
“We have a bad habit of playing down to the less talented teams, and this weekend was a good test of that,” said Paiano, who was named the ECACHL Player of the Week for her efforts. “I think we did well, but we didn’t play as well as we could have for the full 60 minutes. In any other game, not showing up to play for 10-20 minutes in a game against a team like Niagara can make a huge dent.”