PLATTSBURGH — The Plattsburgh State women's hockey team took to the ice for their first home game of the season and walked away victorious, defeating Norwich University, 3-1, in non-league play.
This victory marks the 400th win for Cardinals' (3-0-0) coach Kevin Houle, who is in his 17th season at the helm.
There was also a banner-raising ceremony directly before the start of the game to showcase Plattsburgh's 2018-2019 national championship victory.
“It kind of snuck up on me, I had no idea it was the 400th,” Houle said. “The banner-raising was awesome, and it really means something to win a game like this against a front-team like Norwich early in the season.”
The first period went scoreless for the two teams as they battled for possession early on.
The Cardinals' Annie Katonka opened scoring in the second period with a goal at the 11:25 mark off an assist from Sara Krauseneck.
Less than a minute later, the Cadets (0-1-0) fired back with a goal from Julia Massota to equalize.
Sarah Wolf registered the decisive goal for Plattsburgh with 9:25 left in the second period to put the Cardinals ahead, 2-1.
“I think we were a little nervous in the first period since it was our first big game of the year, but I think in the second period, we really stepped it up, and everyone on the team worked really hard,” Wolf said. “Before my goal, what was going through my mind was to get to the net and keep playing hard for my teammates.
“All we wanted to do was win and get the game back in our hands.”
Kaitlin Drew-Mead scored the third goal for Plattsburgh off an assist from Wolf at the 2:05 mark of the second period to cushion the lead.
The Cardinals took a 3-1 lead heading into the third period and held it for the remainder of the game.
“It took a little while for us to get there but certainly in the third period I thought we really locked them down a lot and denied opportunities,” Houle said. “I thought we had a lot of quality chances around the net, and I thought we controlled play very well. We tightened things up as the game wore on.”
Houle was also impressed with the performance of goalkeeper Ashley Davis who came away with 26 saves for Plattsburgh.
“She's done a great job playing in the first real tough game we had,” he said. “She was comfortable, and she made the saves she had to make.”
Wolf also commented on Davis, stating that the team has confidence in her abilities since she has proven that she deserves to be in the net.
“I think we played a great game, and I think it shows what type of team we are and what's going to come next,” Wolf said.
The Cardinals extend their record to three straight wins with this victory, and Norwich marks its first loss.
“It's a game obviously both teams looked forward to, and it was a tightly-contested game (Wednesday). We were able to pull it out and gain a two-goal lead in the second period, and I thought we played very well with the lead in the third,” Houle said.
Plattsburgh State hosts Oswego on Friday at 7 p.m., and on Saturday at 3 p.m.
“It's still early on, but I think we showed that we can play with the top teams in the country, which we expected,” Houle said. “When you win a game like this, it gives you some momentum and confidence heading into the rest of the season.”
Plattsburgh State 3, Norwich 1
Norwich 0 1 0 — 1
Plattsburgh State 0 3 0 — 3
First period- no scoring.
Penalties- Schmelzer, PSU (tripping), 6:17. Goleniak, NOR (interference), 8:58. NOR (bench minor, too many players), 14:42. Watts, NOR (slashing), 19:22.
Second period- 1, PSU, Katonka (Boric), 8:35. 2, NOR, Masotta (Moell, Benoit), 9:31. 3, PSU, Wolf, 10:35. 4, PSU, Drew-Mead (McArdle, Wolf), 17:55.
Penalties- Kiraly, PSU (roughing), :50.
Third period- no scoring.
Penalties- Baptiste, NOR (hooking), 15:30. Benjamin, PSU (holding), 18:32.
Shots on goal
Norwich 6 15 6 — 27
Plattsburgh State 11 11 10 — 32
Goaltenders (shots-saves)- Berg, NOR, 32-29. Davis, PSU, 27-26.
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