February 8, 2002

W. Hockey Looks to Remain Hot This Weekend

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The women’s hockey team (4-14-1 overall, 3-6-1 ECAC North) looks to keep its momentum this weekend, playing at Princeton on Friday, and Yale on Saturday.

“We just have to keep gelling as a team,” said senior captain Jenel Bode. “Going out there with heart and determination is key,” she said. “That’s what wins us games.”

Last Friday the Red posted a big win over Harvard in Cambridge, beating the Crimson 4-2 behind good team play and solid goaltending. Then, on Saturday, the lady icers traveled to Providence to tie No. 9 Brown 2-2 with another great performance between the pipes.

Both Harvard and Brown stood ahead of Cornell in the ECAC North standings, but the Red didn’t let that fact be a deterrent. For its temerity, the Red gained three points in the race to the playoffs in March.

The team looks to improve again on the road.

“This weekend is huge,” said Bode about the games. “Because they’re Ivies, and they’re the last few games of the season.”

She further noted the importance of the games in the conference standings. Cornell currently sits at sixth place in the conference with seven points.

The Red go into Princeton (11-6-2, 7-3) looking for some revenge for a 4-1 defeat earlier in the season. The Tigers challenge the Red with the second-ranked defense in the ECAC North, allowing only 1.7 goals per game.

Overall, the Tigers stand at third in the conference, seven points ahead of Cornell. Princeton rides a three game winning streak.

On Saturday the Red hits New Haven looking to sweep the season series against Yale (5-13-2, 2-8). The Bulldogs, who sit at seventh in the conference, lost 4-1 to Cornell in November, giving the Red its second victory of the season.

According to the numbers, Yale and Cornell’s offenses are almost perfectly matched, both with 20 goals in 10 games.

However, the Red should have the advantage in goal. The Bulldogs’ netminders, Nicolette Frank and Katie Hirte, have save percentages of .843 and .884, respectively, while Cornell counters with ECAC North Goalie of the Week, Sanya Sandahl, owner of a .893 save percentage, and Liz Connelly, with a .922 save percentage.

Yale has a three game losing streak.

Bode said team play and precision would be essential for the Red this weekend.

“The key is for us to dominate all three zones,” she noted. “We can’t give [the other teams] time to walk in on us.”

The team goes into the games focused and ready to play, according to Bode. And it’s not the same squad from earlier in the year, she pointed out. The Red want to surprise some people.

“I’m really proud of where the team has come from the beginning of the season,” she said. “The heart and determination comes through in every game.”

Archived article by Matt James