Defending champs Plattsburgh State heads to title game, tops Norwich
PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. -- Plattsburgh State opened up their quest to defend their 2014 NCAA Division III Women's National Championship with a rematch of last year's title game against Norwich. Plattsburgh State punched its second consecutive ticket to the national finals by defeating the Cadets 5-2 at the Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena.
The Cardinals got on the board first with an Alyssa Parke power play goal 2:42 into the game. The goal was setup by Bridget Balisy who cycled the puck to Giovanna Sense. Senese then slung the puck back to the top to Parke who was camped in the top of the slot. The 2015 first-team All-American then ripped a slap shot clean through the Norwich and past Cadet goaltender Celeste Robert.
Plattsburgh State was not done as they tallied four goals in a row on Norwich with two in the first and two in the second.
|2015 NC WOMEN'S HOCKEY CHAMPIONSHIP|
|Champ: Plattsburgh St. 3, Elmira 2 | Box Score|
|Semifinal: Plattsburgh State 5, Norwich 2 | Box Score|
|Semifinal:Elmira 3, UW-Falls River 2 | Box Score|
It was a bit of a strange time in the Stafford Ice Arena as the goal light went on but play continued for several seconds. At the next whistle the officials came together to talk it over before rewarding the Cardinals with the goal.
The second period was more of the same as Plattsburgh State came out with another quick strike just 36 seconds in.
Parke sent another blast towards the net from her point position. The puck careened off the boards to the right of the net, bouncing right to Melissa Sheeran who tapped it in before Robert could slide over in time.
Junior Bridget Balisy would make it 4-0 Cardinals when she sniped one past Robert on a beautiful pass from Lipson.
This would mark the end of Robert's night as she was lifted for Laurie King.
Again, Lipson setup her teammate on a 2-1 rush sliding one across the slot to Balisy who finished it off with her 19 goal of the season.
However, the Cadets would not go down quietly, especially senior forward Kaycie Anderson.
Anderson would score a 5-3 power play goal to get Norwich on the goal. She collected the puck off of several rebounds before finally being able to beat Cardinals goaltender Camille Leonard.
Anderson would strike again in the beginning of the third period to make it 4-2 and give the Cadets a little momentum headed down the final stretch.
But it would not be enough as Plattsburgh State would weather Anderson's - and the Cadets - offensive attack before salting the game away with Meneghin's second of the game provided by the empty net with just 12 seconds left.
Cardinals' goaltender Leonard finished the evening with 22 saves on 24 shots. Robert picked up the loss after allowing the first four goals. King would make all nine saves she faced in 31:17 minutes of action.
With the win Plattsburgh State moves to 25-2-2 on the season and moves to their second consecutive NCAA Division III Women's Ice Hockey National Championship Saturday night at 7 p.m.