The Plattsburgh State women's hockey team went out on the road for the first time this season a weekend ago and had its way with two one-sided wins over Chatham University.
The Cardinals, however, step up in competition today when they're back on the road for a 2 p.m. non-conference game at Bowdoin College.
"Bowdoin is a very good team," Plattsburgh State head coach Kevin Houle said. "They have several dangerous players and have been in and out of the Top 10.
"This will be their first game of the season and they will be fired up. No question, this will be the best team we've played so far."
Today's game will be a good test for the Cardinals, who are off to a 4-0-1 start in ECAC West play.
In addition, it will serve as a tune-up heading into next weekend's Cardinal/Panther Classic at the Stafford Ice Arena which features four teams ranked in the Top 10 in Division III women's hockey - Plattsburgh State, Middlebury College, Amherst College and Elmira College.
"We have to play one game at a time," Houle said. "Anytime you have a young team like we do, you don't, by any stretch of the imagination, look past anyone.
"We do, however, want to be playing well heading into the tournament.
The Polar Bears finished last season with a 15-9-2 overall record, including a loss to Middlebury in the NESCAC semifinals. Bowdoin has 22 players on this year's roster, with six of them being seniors.
The Cardinals have played well thus far, except for needing to rally for a 5-all tie with Neumann College a couple of weekends ago in the first game of a 2-game set at the Stafford Ice Arena.
"We moved the puck as well as we have so far this season in the second game against Neumann," Houle said. "But, except for the 5-5 tie with Neumann, the game against Bowdoin will be our first true test. No question about it."
The Cardinals are getting offensive production from a lot of players, including a hat trick by freshman Emma Rutherford last weekend against Chatham.
The Cardinals, in 5 games, have four players with seven points or more — Teal Gove (4-7-11), Rutherford (6-3-9), Jenny Kistner (3-5-8) and Chelsea VanGlahn (4-3-7).
Plattsburgh State has 10 players with four points or more and 14 with three points or more.
Sydney Aveson and Ally Ross have combined for the four wins in net for the Cardinals.
"It was good to get out on the road last weekend and good to get it out of the way," Houle said.
"We're looking forward to the Bowdoin game and it will give us a chance to see where we stand at this point."