Oct. 3, 2009


Courtesy of Mercyhurst

ERIE, Pa. – The No. 2 Mercyhurst College women’s hockey team opened the season on a high note Friday evening, scoring four goals in the second period to shake off a slow start and roll past Bemidji State, 4-1, at the Mercyhurst Ice Center. With the victory, the Lakers improve to 1-0 on the season and 7-4 all-time in lid-lifting games. Bemidji State, on the other hand, falls to 0-1 and 1-8-2 lifetime against Mercyhurst.

The Lakers, led by a three-assist performance from junior Jesse Scanzano, found offense in several different ways - power play, short handed, delayed penalty and even strength -  courtesy of goals from juniors Cassea Schols and Vicki Bendus and sophomores Kelley Steadman and Jess Jones.

Playing Mercyhurst for the first time since 2005, the Beavers (0-1) frustrated the Lakers in the first period, holding them scoreless on 15 shots and three power-play attempts. However, the Lakers cracked Bemidji State’s defense in the second as they exploded for four goals, three of which came in a span of five minutes and 37 seconds.

Schols broke the ice with a power-play strike just 6:10 into the frame. Hovering near the blueline, the third-year defenseman took a pass from freshman Jessica Christofferson and ripped it past BSU’s Zuzana Tomcikova for the 1-0 lead. Less than three minutes later Bendus extended the advantage to 2-0 when she picked off a pass in the neutral zone and skated in for a 4-on-3 short-handed goal at 8:49. Steadman capped off the frenzy with an extra-attacker goal off a feed from Scanzano at 11:47.

After nearly an eight-minute break, Jones rekindled the offense with a 5-on-5 blast at the 18:32 mark.

Bemidji State broke up the shutout bid late in the third period, as Erin Johnson found the back of the net on the power play with 55 seconds remaining.

Sophomore Hillary Pattenden improved to 1-0 on the season and 25-3-0 at Mercyhurst with 14 saves through 59:57. Tomcikova, meanwhile, suffered the loss despite making 38 saves, 26 of which came in the first two periods. Mercyhurst outshot Bemidji State 42-15 and converted 1-for-9 on the power play. The Beavers finished 1-for-11 with the extra-skater.

Mercyhurst and Bemidji State wrap up the two-game series on Saturday, Oct. 3 at 2 p.m. at the Mercyhurst Ice Center.