POTSDAM — Josiane Pozzebon saved Clarkson's season and then Elizabeth Giguere sent the Golden Knights women's hockey team to the Frozen Four for a fourth straight year.
Clarkson (30-7-2 overall), the two-time defending national champion, earned another trip to the Frozen Four when Giguere scored at 14 minutes, 13 seconds of overtime to give the Golden Knights a 2-1 victory over Boston College before 977 fans in an NCAA quarterfinal Saturday afternoon at Cheel Arena.
Clarkson struggled to generate offense against the Eagles (26-12-1) for most of the game until Pozzebon, a defenseman, took charge and skated to the net, lofting a shot over Eagles goalie Maddy McArthur with just 3:03 left in regulation.
The Golden Knights will face top-seeded Wisconsin in a semifinal at a time to be announced next Friday at the People's United Center in Hamden, Conn.
Giguere, a sophomore, has played in four NCAA Tournament games so far, and she has scored the game-winning goal in overtime in three of them, including last year's national championship game against Colgate.
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It was her second postseason overtime winner this year. She scored to beat Quinnipiac 3-2 to give Clarkson a first-round sweep of an ECAC Hockey quarterfinal series.
"I literally don't remember," Giguere said, regarding what happened on her goal. "I was tied up and somehow the goalie thought she had the puck, but it was just right there and I pushed it in the net. It was not a pretty goal, but it's a goal. I don't know how (all the overtime goals) happen."
After a late tying goal in the third, @EliGiguere11 finds a loose puck in front to win the game in overtime and send the #GoldenKnights to their fourth consecutive #FrozenFour!! #LetsGoTech pic.twitter.com/dJtbMSn547— Clarkson Womens Hockey (@CUknights) March 17, 2019
The game-winning goal started when Clarkson's Michaela Pejzlova won a faceoff in the Eagles defensive zone. The puck went back to Loren Gabel, who was at the top of the circle, and she passed it to defenseman Emma Keenan, who took a shot from behind the circles. The rebound of her shot came to Pejzlova, who was near the crease, and she sent another shot as an Eagles defensemen fell down in the crease next to McArthur, who was lying on her stomach.
The puck squirted loose near the other side of the crease and Giguere got a stick on it, with Gabel's stick nearby behind her and hit the back of the net, setting off a celebration, capped with Clarkson goalie Kassidy Sauve knocking the pile of players over.
"I think we have a big group that's been through (overtimes) before, so we know how hard we need to work together to make things happen, definitely relying on everybody to pull through and give 100 percent," Clarkson defenseman Ella Shelton said. "Playing overtime, we've been there before. We are going into the fourth period, I guess, calm and confident, not being excited and nervous."
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Boston College, who is the last team to beat Clarkson in a postseason game in 2016, controlled play in the first period, outshooting Clarkson 14-6.
"We have very good (defensemen) and we've been very good all year," Eagles coach Katie Crowley said. "I thought we would just pop another (goal) in and we'd be all set. I thought our defense was great. I thought it was a great hockey game all-around. Both teams had chances. It's a tough one."
The Eagles nearly took an early lead when Maegan Beres picked up a breakaway opportunity at 12:31 of the opening period, but Sauve stopped it with a pad save.
The Eagles took a 1-0 lead at 13:24 of the first period on a goal from last year's Patty Kazmaier winner, Daryl Watts, on a shot that appeared to bounce into the net.
Boston College had a chance to go up 2-0 with 12 minutes left in regulation when Caitrin Lonergan went on a breakaway, but she lost control of the puck on her stick near the crease.
The Eagles did a good job containing Clarkson's top line of Giguere, Gabel and Pejzlova, holding the trio to seven total shots.
"They did a great job against our line, I think," Giguere said. "Their (defensemen) are really good. We got some chances. We just didn't get the shot on net. I thought they did a great job against us, but at the end we still got it."
This article is written by Cap Carey from Watertown Daily Times, N.Y. and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to email@example.com.