Williams downs Hamilton 2-0

Natalie Bernstein '16
Natalie Bernstein '16

WILLIAMTOWN, MA- The Williams College women's hockey team defeated in-conference opponent Hamilton College tonight in a hard-fought battle 2-0. sophomore Sarah Lehman (Lexington, MA) scored the game-winning, power-play goal at 5:13 in the third, scoring her third goal of the season. Freshman goalie Christina Cleroux (New Glascow, N.S.) had her third consecutive shut-out, making a total of 20 saves. The Ephs are now 6-5-1 for the season while the Continentals are 5-5-3.

 The Continentals came out strong in the first period with a number of break-out opportunities early on, but Cleroux played well to keep the game at 0-0. However the Ephs were able to convert defensive plays to offensive ones, and took the lead at 8:33 with a goal by senior captain Andree Heller (Toronto, Ont.). Assisted by freshman Kearan Burke (Shrewsbury, MA) and senior Gwen Schultz (Wallingford, CT), Heller picked up the loose puck in the slot and fired it home.

The Ephs and Continentals went back and forth for the rest of the first period and all through the second, with strong performances by both goalies. The Continentals put pressure on the Ephs, but  Cleroux made 7 saves in the period. 

"Once again, Cleroux played tough and kept our team in the lead," commented head coach Meghan Gillis.

The Ephs had an opportunity at the beginning of the third period when Hamilton received at penalty at 3:20. With a one-man advantage, Williams was able to control play. Sophomore Emily Krueger (Manasquan, NJ) took control of the puck, skating behind the Hamilton net and taking a shot that was then rebounded out in front for Lehman to knock in. It was Krueger's 4th assist of the season.
The power play goal created a huge momentum swing, with Williams taking a more offensive stance and controlling play. At 15:37, Williams earned a penalty kill with good net-minding and aggressive moves to clear the puck from the Williams zone.
With just under a minute of play left in the third period, Hamilton pulled their goalie for a one-man advantage but were unable to get past Cleroux and the Williams defenders.
"We did a much better job playing as a cohesive unit this afternoon," reflected coach Gillis.

The Ephs face off against second ranked team Elmira this Tuesday at home. The puck drops at 7pm.

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