November 18, 2013

Freshmen Ames, Leonard shine for Cardinals


— PLATTSBURGH — The No. 1 Plattsburgh State women’s hockey team picked up where it left off Sunday.

Twenty-four hours removed from a 7-0 drubbing of Buffalo State, the Cardinals (6-0, 3-0 ECAC West) clobbered the Bengals (0-5, 0-4 ECAC West) for the second time in as many days for an 8-0 victory.

“Yeah, I thought we started a little slow (Sunday),” Plattsburgh coach Kevin Houle said. “I thought we were a little flat. We missed on a few chances early on, then picked it up. Again, it was a good effort. It was a good 60 minutes of hockey.”

Mel Ames, a freshman forward, was the focal point of Houle’s offense. The Rochester native not only scored her first collegiate goal, but added two more in a hat-trick performance.

“She can really shoot the puck and has good hands,” Houle said. “Obviously, in a game like (Sunday), she got a little more space to get the shot off and did a great job, especially that third goal. But she has the ability to put the puck in the net.”

Entering the game, the Cardinals had converted 3-of-18 power-play opportunities. The special teams, though, finished 3-for-4 with nine shots in the eight-goal win.

“I thought we had some good looks,” Houle said. “I thought we moved the puck well. On that five-minute major, obviously I’d like to see us score a couple of goals on that in different situations. But I thought we had some really good opportunities — two or three of them — that kind of slid by the net.

“It was good to get it clicking a little bit. (Three-for-four) is certainly good. We’ve still got to continue to work on it.”

Cami Leonard, a freshman from Oakville, Ont., made her first collegiate start between the pipes for Plattsburgh. The 18-year-old netminder fended off all 11 shots faced in her debut.

“I thought she looked good,” Houle said. “She was poised, she made the saves when she had to and she looked comfortable in the net. She was tested on a couple of occasions. She did a nice job.”

Shannon Stewart added two goals and an assist in the rout. The junior forward now has 73 career points in a Cardinals uniform.

Through six games, Plattsburgh has outscored its opponents by a 31-0 margin. With the shutout, the team improved its scoreless streak to 420 minutes and 17 seconds.

The Cardinals will play host to Neumann University in a pair of ECAC West games at 7 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday.

Plattsburgh outscored the Knights 14-1 in three games last season, including a 5-0 win in the ECAC West semifinals at the Stafford Ice Arena.

“I like the way we’re playing; I like the way we’re working,” Houle said. “It’s going to be a different weekend, for sure. Neumann’s a good team, and they’re capable of playing with anybody. We have to be ready.

“We’ve just got to make sure we’re playing at a high level going into that game. I think we did a good job this weekend of playing at a high level despite the score.”

Plattsburgh State 8,

Buffalo State 0

Plattsburgh 2 4 2 — 8

Buffalo State 0 0 0 — 0

First period- 1, PSU, Stewart (Era, Gilligan), 9:07 (PP). 2, PSU, Stewart, 11:36. Penalties: Mish, BFS (tripping), 8:45. VanGlahn, PSU (body checking), 18:06. Era, PSU (body checking), 19:52.

Second period- 3, PSU, Balisy (Kistner, Gilligan), 5:47. 4, PSU, Parke (Balisy, Gove), 8:02 (PP). 5, PSU, Ames (Turk, Kolcon), 8:52. 6, PSU, Caldwell (Stewart, Era), 17:50 (PP). Penalties: Cornett, BFS (body checking), 6:48. Kirchberger, BFS (5-contact to the head), 13:16. Kirchberger, BFS (10-game misconduct), 13:16.

Third period- 7, PSU, Ames (Turk, Era), 11:15. 8, PSU, Ames (Turk), 14:10 (SH). Penalties: Kistner, PSU (tripping), 8:22. Favretto, PSU (interference), 12:40.

Shots on goal:

Buffalo State 4 4 3 — 11

Plattsburgh 22 18 15 — 55

Goaltenders (shots-saves): Lee 40-34, Quigley 15-13, BFS, (55-47). Leonard, PSU, 11-11.

Power plays (goals-opportunities): Buffalo State 0-4; Plattsburgh 3-4.

Attendance: 209.

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