---- — POTSDAM — The Plattsburgh State women’s hockey team posted a 6-0 shutout over Potsdam State in an ECAC West game at Clarkson’s Cheel Arena Sunday.
The No. 1-ranked Cardinals (21-0-1, 13-0-2 ECAC West) proved to be too much for the Bears (8-13-2, 4-9-1), finishing the day with a 46-15 shots-on-goal advantage.
Plattsburgh scored the game-winning goal early on Emma Rutherford’s ninth of the year from Teal Gove and Shannon Stewart at 5:46 of the first period. Two minutes later, Ali Vakos added her first of two goals with an assist from Chelsea VanGlahn to give the Cardinals a 2-0 lead at the end of the first.
“We scored a couple of early goals, and we continued with a lot of pressure,” Plattsburgh coach Kevin Houle said. “Their goalie played well. We had a lot of time in their zone and had several good opportunities. They had a couple good chances as well, but (Sydney Aveson) stood tall.”
At 16:55 of the second period, VanGlahn’s unassisted goal put the Cardinals up by three.
The Plattsburgh tacked on three more goals in third period. Stewart scored a power-play goal at 2:04, which was followed by Alyssa Parke’s sixth of the season at 4:14. Vakos found the back of the net for the second time Sunday at 16:11 to round of the scoring.
VanGlahn contributed a goal and two assists for the Cardinals, while Vakos tallied two goals and an assist. Stewart and Gove each added two points.
“When we got that third goal late in the second, I thought that goal took the wind out of their sails,” Houle said. “Going up 3-0 into the third period is more comforting than a three-goal lead heading into the third.”
Aveson stopped all 15 shots faced for her sixth shutout. Potsdam’s Jen Conophy recorded 40 saves in the loss.
The third line consisting of VanGlahn, Vakos and Giovanna Senese finished with a combined three goals and five assists.
“That line has given us a spark as of late,” Houle said. “They give us high-energy shifts and are comfortable playing with one another. They’re starting to find the back of the net.”
Elmira College hopped over Plattsburgh in the ECAC West standings with a weekend sweep of Oswego State. The Soaring Eagles own a one-point lead on the Cardinals with 28 points, but Elmira has completed the conference portion of their schedule.
The Cardinals have two ECAC West games remaining in the regular season schedule, which come next weekend at Neumann College. A win or a tie will secure the ECAC West regular season title and the top seed entering the playoffs. Saturday’s game at Neumann is set for 7 p.m. before the regular season finale Sunday at 2 p.m.
“After the Elmira sweep, we knew we had a lot of big games ahead of us,” Houle said. “I know we lost a point to Utica, but it was a tough game, and that’s going to happen. We want to finish with a couple wins. Our team has played loose and relaxed all year long. We’re hoping for a strong weekend.”
Plattsburgh State 6, Potsdam State 0
Plattsburgh 2 1 3 — 6
Potsdam 0 0 0 — 0
First period- 1, PSU, Rutherford (Gove, Stewart), 5:46. 2, PSU, Vakos (VanGlahn), 7:47. Penalties: Holowka, POT (tripping), 16:04.
Second period- 3, PSU, VanGlahn, 16:55. Penalties: Marsman, POT (checking), 7:21. Lanni, POT (hooking), 9:49. Silveira, POT (tripping), 12:33. VanGlahn, PSU (checking), 14:43.
Third period- 4, PSU, Stewart (Gove, Balisy), 2:04 (pp). 5, PSU, Parke (Vakos, Senese), 4:14. 6, PSU, Vakos (Senese, VanGlahn), 16:11. Penalties: Marsman, POT (cross-checking), 0:33.
Shots on goal:
Plattsburgh 19 16 11 — 46
Potsdam 6 6 3 — 15
Goaltenders (shots-saves): Aveson, PSU, 15-15. Conophy, POT, 40-46.
Power plays (goals-opportunities): Plattsburgh 1-4; Potsdam 0-2.