SCHENECTADY, NEW YORK – Junior goaltender Aubree Moore (Bowie, MD) made 33 saves to earn her first career shutout, as the Bears triumphed over the Dutchwomen, 1-0, this afternoon at Messa Rink. Brown improved to 2-8-1 (2-6-0 ECAC) on the season with the win, while Union dropped to 3-9-3 (0-5-3 ECAC).
Brown came out fighting, dominating the play for much of the first stanza as they connected on multiple pass series and created several chances on goal. Union's Shenae Lundberg stood tall in net for much of the period, but the Bears finally broke her down with just 1:25 to play. Junior Jessica Hoyle (Toronto, Ontario) intercepted Union's attempt to clear the puck, skating around the right side of the net and backhanding a shot into the left corner to beat Lundberg and put the Bears up, 1-0. The goal, her first of the season and the ultimate game winner, was unassisted.
"The unassisted goal by Jess at the end of the first was a really big one for us," said Head Coach Amy Bourbeau. "It came at a crucial time and it gave the team a lift and lots of confidence when we really needed it. It was nice to get the first goal of the game and maintain the lead all the way through."
As the clock wound down, the Dutchwomen took control of the puck, attempting to tie the game. With just under a minute left to play, Union sophomore Christine Valente took a low shot from the right side of the net. The puck slid just to the crease before Moore, who had been knocked down by traffic, pushed it away with her glove. The whistle was blown and the referees reviewed the play, ultimately determining that Moore had made the save and sending the Bears into the locker room with a 1-0 lead.
In a clean first period, Brown out shot Union, 9-5, with Moore stopping each of the shots that she faced.
The Bears ran into penalty trouble just 1:33 into the second period, and it plagued them for the entirety of the stanza, but Moore, making 13 saves in goal, and the penalty kill played brilliantly, stifling all four of Union's power play opportunities.
Junior Vanessa Welten (Crysler, Ontario) was the first in the box, as she was called for tripping just under two minutes into the period. Union monopolized play, with its best opportunity to even the score coming on a breakaway by freshman Jessica Kaminsky. Jennifer Nedow (Brockville, Ontario) was there to intercept it however, allowing the Bears to escape the first penalty with their lead intact.
Less than a minute after returning to full strength, co-captain Alena Polenska (Kutna Hora, Czech Republic) was whistled for hooking, but Moore stood up to the pressure, en route to a 13 save period. At 7:38 into play, as Union struggled to find ways to the net, they attempted to pull Lundberg in favor of the extra attacker, but an inference call on Monica Masucci (Toronto, Ontario) kept her between the pipes.
Surviving their fourth penalty of the period, the Bears had a few opportunities to increase their lead but were denied by Union, resulting in a scoreless second period.
The Dutchwomen had ample opportunities to even the score in the third, but the Bears kept pressure on their offense and Moore was impenetrable, stopping several direct shots on net.
Union called a timeout with 2:04 left to play and pulled their goalie immediately upon the whistle. In spite of the home team's extra attacker, the Bears kept possession of the puck, with Welten escaping from the crowd and shooting wide, just missing an empty net goal. Valente had one last opportunity with seconds to go, but Moore made her final save of the evening just before the buzzer.
Moore put on an impressive show in the third period, making 15 crucial saves to give Brown its second win of the season and earn her first career shut-out. The Bears were out shot in the game, 33 to 17, but the penalty kill was four for four on the night
"We had a good talk during pre-game video today," said Bourbeau, "and I think that really helped to get them prepared to play. Our team plays best when they have their legs and are skating hard and we had both of those things today. Our first period was one of the best we have played all year, our goaltending was excellent and we battled hard for 60 minutes. It was a must-win game and I am really happy with how the team rose to the occasion."
Ending the semester with a league win, Brown will now begin a 27-day break before resuming play with two non-league contests. They will play the University of Maine Black Bears on Saturday, January 5 and Sunday, January 6, with action set to begin at 2 p.m. on both afternoons.
Brown: 9 - 4 - 4 - x - 17
Union: 5 - 13 - 15 - x - 33
First period – B, Hoyle, 18:35.
Second period – Penalties: B, 4-8.
Third period –
Saves: B, Moore (60:00), 5 – 13 - 15 - x - 33. U, Lundberg (58:08), 8 – 4 - 4 – x - 16.