WILLIAMSTOWN, MA — The Williams College women's hockey team (6-4-0, NESCAC 4-2-0) returned to Lansing Chapman Rink this afternoon to face off against Bowdoin College (4-5-0, NESCAC 2-2-0). After a 7-1 loss last night, Bowdoin came up big, defeating the Ephs 3-2. Freshman Marissa Fichter (Duxbury, MA) scored the game winning goal late in the third period to secure the victory for the Polar Bears.
Bowdoin came out out as a different team tonight, testing sophomore goalie Christina Cleroux (New Glascow, NS) early on and maintaining offensive pressure throughout the period. Williams received a penalty at 14:53, but fended off Bowdoin with strong defensive play. Cleroux displayed great rebound control during the penalty kill and made a total of 11 saves in the period, while Bowdoin goalie Lan Crofton (Milton, MA) made 5 saves to keep the score tied at 0-0 going into the second period.
Play went back and forth at the beginning of the second period. Williams was unable to capitalize off a power play at 9:50, but fought hard for the second half of the period to take the lead 1-0 at 15:28. Freshman Eliza Quigley (Marblehead, MA) cleared the puck from the Williams zone by passing it to freshman Abby Brustad (Mound, MN). Brustad took the puck down the right boards, and scored a top shelf goal on Crofton's blocker side.
Bowdoin was quick to respond to Brustad's goal, with freshman Miranda Bell (Plano, TX) scoring just over a minute later after a scramble in front of Cleroux's net. Bell was assisted by freshman Marissa Fichter (Duxbury, MA).
Tied at 1-1, the Polar Bears kept pressuring the Ephs. With a minute forty-five left in the second, Fichter scored off a solid pass from Bell, making it 2-1 for Bowdoin.
The Polar Bears received a penalty with a minute left in the second, and Williams was unable to capitalize and went into the second intermission down 2-1.
Bowdoin started off the final period still on the penalty kill. Although Williams failed to score on the power play, later in the period Williams responded at 8:50 with a goal to tie up the game 2-2 by junior Chelsey Stevenson (Tilbury, ONT). Sophomore Candace Lu (Studio City, CA) took a slap shot from the point, that junior Emily Krueger (Manasquan, NJ) deflected the shot hitting the goalie in the mask. Stevenson then buried the rebound, scoring her 3rd goal of the weekend.
Both teams were unable to generate scoring opportunities until late in the third period, when Fichter scored an unassisted goal at 17:21 to take the lead again. After the goal, the majority of the play remained in the Williams end, so the Ephs were unable to pull Cleroux for an additional attacker until 50 seconds remaining in the period. Though Williams kept the pressure on Bowdoin with the additional attacker, the Ephs failed to score, losing 3-2.
Williams head coach Meghan Gillis reflected on the game, stating "we played a lot stronger as a team yesterday as a unit of 6 in the defensive zone, and a unit of 5 in the offensive zone. We have a quick turnaround with only one practice before our game against Salve Regina, so we will continue to work on our team play on Tuesday."
Bowdoin outshot Williams 34 to 20, with Cleroux earning a 91% save percentage and Crofton earning a 90% save percentage.
Williams faces off against out-of-conference opponent Salve Regina at home this coming Tuesday. The puck drops at 7pm