Women's Hockey: Cadets Rally Past Rival Manhattanville, 4-2
NORTHFIELD, Vt. – The Norwich women's ice hockey scored four unanswered goals to rally past Manhattanville and stretch its unbeaten streak to 14 straight games with a 4-2 win on Saturday afternoon at Kreitzberg Arena in ECAC East action.
The Cadets (20-3-1, 16-0-1 ECAC East) fell behind 2-0 after Manhattanville scored two goals 19 seconds apart in the 12th minute of the first period.
Shannon Coffey gave Manhattanville a 1-0 lead with a solo coast-to-coast rush to beat three Norwich players as well as NU goaltender Cindy Fortin on the backhand after faking a shot on the forehand.
Katie Little increased the Valiants' lead to 2-0 when she banged home a loose rebound after her initial shot was saved by Fortin. Ella Hubley and Lynsey Schill picked up assists on the goal for Manhattanville.
However, senior team captain Sophie Leclerc led the comeback with two goals of her own coming 2:46 apart late in the first period to tie the game at two heading into the first intermission.
Leclerc got Norwich on the board at the 17:13 mark when she won a face-off in Manhattanville's zone. Leclerc fought through the Manhattanville forward and then rifled a shot top shelf and short side to beat Manhattanville goaltender Emy Cote over the shoulder and cut the deficit to 2-1. The goal was Leclerc's 150th career point, which is the most in NU women's hockey history.
Leclerc corralled the puck between the hash marks of the faceoff circle and then tucked the puck just underneath the crossbar as a Manhattanville defender pushed her to the ice.
After a scoreless second period, Stephanie Invernizzi knocked home what would go on to be the game-winning goal at the 5:06 mark of the third period for her fifth goal of the season.
Julie Fortier cemented the Cadets' lead 2:49 later when she unleashed a slap shot that Cote never saw before it hit the twine and gave Norwich a 4-2 lead.
Fortin made 21 saves to pick up her 14th straight win and improve to 14-1-0 on the season. Cote turned aside 26 shots to take the loss for Manhattanville (16-7-2, 13-4-1 ECAC East) and drop to 9-5-2 on the year.
Saturday's win was just the second time in program history that the Cadets beat Manhattanville and it was the first time on home ice. Manhattanville leads the all-time series 6-2.
The Cadets close out the regular season with a 3 p.m. game against Nichols in ECAC East action.