Dec. 18, 2008


Courtesy of Harvard

HANOVER, N.H. – Sarah Vaillancourt collected the 200th point of her illustrious career on a first-period tally to help the Harvard women’s hockey team to a 3-2 victory at No. 3 Dartmouth Wednesday evening at Thompson Arena.  Vaillancourt also collected an assist in the game, while Katharine Chute and Liza Ryabkina tallied the other Crimson goals.

Harvard (5-5-3, 5-2-2 ECAC Hockey, 3-0-0 Ivy League) was called for back-to-back holding penalties early in the first period, giving the Big Green a 5-on-3 advantage for 75 seconds beginning at 6:07.  Dartmouth mustered five shots on net during the power play, but Christina Kessler stopped all five pucks as Harvard killed both penalties.   

Five seconds after the final Crimson penalty expired, Leanna Coskren chipped the puck ahead to Vaillancourt along the left boards.  The senior forward skated into the Big Green zone and moved to her right, eluding one defender.  Vaillancourt kept possession and wristed a shot over Carli Clemis’s glove and into the net, giving the Crimson a 1-0 lead at 8:12.  

With 3:35 remaining in period one, Harvard was whistled for a hooking penalty and Dartmouth (7-4-1, 6-2-1, 2-1-0) capitalized to tie the game.  Kessler stopped an initial shot by Jenna Cunningham, but Maggie Kennedy crashed the net and snuck the puck under the netminder’s pads at 17:07.  Katie Gray was credited with a secondary assist.

Harvard regained the lead with a tally by Chute at 6:04 of the second period.  Kirsten Kester pushed the puck up the ice to Vaillancourt, who made a moved towards the Dartmouth goal.  She paused and flipped a pass to Chute, who was crashing down the left side.  The puck found Chute’s stick and the sophomore forward backhanded it through the Big Green defense to light the lamp.

The Big Green responded to knot the game for the second time, as Dartmouth’s second goal came from the stick of Amanda Trunzo.  Trunzo wristed a shot between Kessler and the left post to make it 2-2 at 12:39.  Cunningham and Kennedy earned their second points of the game on Trunzo’s tally.  

Entering the final period of play, the Big Green held an 18-16 advantage in shots and a slight lead in faceoffs, 21-20.  

At 3:58 of the third frame, Whitney Kennedy collected the first point of her career, as the rookie earned an assist on a Ryabkina score which put Harvard back on top, 3-2.  Ryabkina took a wrist shot from just inside the right circle that knuckled its way over Clemis’s glove and into the top right corner.  

The Crimson was called for an interference infraction at 14:51, but Kessler stood up to the task, stopping two shots by Shannon Bowman and Kelly Foley on the ensuing Big Green power play, keeping Harvard ahead.  

Kessler made a season-high 32 saves to earn her fourth victory of the year, whole Clemis turned aside 16 shots for the Big Green.  The Big Green outshot the Crimson, 16-3, in the third period and 34-19 overall.

After a two-week break, the Crimson will resume action by hosting ECAC Hockey opponents Princeton and Quinnipiac at Bright Hockey Center Jan. 2-3.