PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The Bears did what they had to on Saturday afternoon at Meehan Auditorium, sending their seniors off in style, beating Colgate, 3-2, to remain in the hunt for the final ECAC Hockey playoff spot. Rookie Sarah Robson (Mississauga, Ontario) supplied the offense when they needed it most, netting two goals, including the game-winner on the power play.
Brown (8-12-7, 5-11-4) came into the game in a three-way for the eighth spot in the league with Colgate (10-13-2, 5-13-2) and RPI (9-19-4, 6-12-2). With the victory and RPI's 4-2 upset of Dartmouth, the Bears remain in a tie with the Engineers, but hold the tie-breaker over RPI, having tied and beat them earlier this season.
Sophomore goalie Aubree Moore (Bowie, Md.) was sensational down the stretch, making 12 saves in the second and 11 in the third, finishing with 30 saves to improve her season win total to four.
The first score of the game came on a fluky play as a bouncing puck deep in the Brown zone found its way past Moore for a 1-0 Colgate lead, just 20 seconds into the game.
The first penalty of the game also went against the Bears as a slashing call at 4:53 put the Raiders on the power play. It would only last 1:20 as a Colgate infraction made it 4-on-4 hockey for 40 seconds. Neither team could take advantage of the open ice, while Brown went a power play of their own, on another slashing call, this time on Colgate. Rookie defender Lauren Vella (Staten Island, N.Y.) was able to make a nice move and attempt on a potential goal, but Raider netminder Kimberly Sass was able to come up with the big save.
The Bears were able to even it up with just 1:59 left in the first period. Robson drilled it home after several attempts by Brown to get one past Sass, for her team-leading ninth goal of the season. Junior Laurie Jolin (Lachine, Quebec) and Vella were there on the assists.
After a fast-paced first 10 minutes to the second period, it was the Bears who were able to break-through first, as Vella found sophomore Jessica Hoyle (Toronto, Ontario) for the go-ahead-goal on a wicked slapshot.
Colgate immediately turned on the offensive pressure, but the Bears were able to make two highlight reel stops to hold the lead. With the puck looped over the head of Moore, Jolin was able to get a stick on it at the last moment, saving it from going in the net. On the same possession, and after Moore had both her stick and blocker knocked off, she made a barehanded stop on the puck, keeping it from crossing the goal line.
Despite the deficit, the Raiders kept fighting, and eventually found the equalizer on a short-handed, breakaway goal by Brittany Philips at 14:48 in the second.
The deadlock did not last long as the Bears remained on the power play and worked the puck around nicely before Robson was able to put it in just 29 seconds later. Vella was there again for hear third assist of the game, along with senior co-captain Katelyn Landry (Belmont, Mass).
The third period saw Colgate press to find the equalizer again, but with just under six minutes to go, the Raiders picked up their second penalty within two minutes go give the Bears a 5-on-3 advantage for nearly a minute and a half.
The Raiders were able to work off the initial infraction however, and right after it came back to 5-on-4, the Bears were whistled for an interference call to make it 4-on-4 for 28 seconds before the Colgate went on the power play.
In spite of the wild swings, Brown was able to work off the penalty and hold the Raiders off the board.
Brown now closes out the season on the road at Harvard and Dartmouth next weekend.