PROVIDENCE, R.I. – To the casual fan, it would have been a surreal case of deja vu, as for the second game in a row, the Bears stormed back from a 3-0 deficit to close within a goal, but gave up an empty-netter in the waning seconds, as Brown was edged by Princeton at Meehan Auditorium on Friday night, 4-2. Right after the Bears scored their first goal of the game in the third period, the rink's fire alarm was tripped causing a 15-minute delay in the game as the arena was cleared by the Providence fire department. The break in the action did not interfere with the Bears' momentum however, as they scored again and kept the offensive pressure on until the final horn.
Princeton scored two goals in the first 5:17 of the game and appeared to be well on its way to its 12th league victory of the season with no problems. Olivia Mucha and Gabie Figueroa were responsible for the first two scores.
The Tigers continued to control the puck for much of the second period and tacked on their third goal with 6:06 to play in the period when Corey Stearns and Sasha Sherry combined to find Kelly Cooke for the score.
The Bears, who have often played well in the third period this season, seemed to click into gear in the final stanza.
Freshman Vanessa Welten (Crysler, Ontario), who made the first start of her career, put a nifty move on the goaltender and went five-hole, netting her third goal of the season off the assist from senior tri-captain Erica Kromm (Naramata, British Columba), just 3:08 into the third.
Three minutes later, the suddenly hot Brown offense seemed to set off the fire alarms in the building… literally. Fire detectors in the arena began to sound and flash as play was put on hold while the source of the problem was identified.
Fire fighters and building officials determined it was the auditorium's heating system that tripped an alarm as a precautionary measure. The vents were okayed by the professionals and the skaters were allowed to retake the ice shortly after.
Not even the smoke alarms could stop the Brown offense as it continued its red-hot play in the third when sophomore Alena Polenska (Kutna Hora, Czech Republic) put in her ninth goal of the year for her team-leading 16th point of the season.
Brown pulled out all the stops, and the goalie with under two minutes remaining, but the Bears could not find a way to get one past Princeton goalie Rachel Weber and the Tigers added an empty net goal with 19 seconds left to seal the victory.
On Saturday afternoon, the Bears will honor its four elder stateswomen on Senior Day versus Quinnipiac at 4 p.m.
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