Cornell women’s hockey fell to both Harvard, 1-4, and Dartmouth, 3-4, during their first weekend on the road on Oct. 29 and 30.
The Ivy League didn’t compete over the past year and a half due to the pandemic, meaning that most of the skaters on each Ivy team have yet to see significant time on the ice.
“They were both great opponents,” said senior forward Gillis Frechette. “But we definitely didn’t play the hockey we are expecting of ourselves, so we will need to get back into that this weekend.”
On Friday, Oct. 29, the Red (1-3-0, 0-2-0 ECAC) traveled to the Bright-Landry Hockey Center in Boston, Mass. to face off against Harvard University, which was ranked 10th in the nation at the time.
The game started out rough for the Red, with Harvard (3-1-0, 2-1-0) sinking a goal within the first two minutes of the game. Shortly thereafter, sophomore forward Kaitlin Jockims scored her first career goal during a power play to knot the score, 1-1.
The Crimson controlled the game, however, taking the most shots, winning a majority of the faceoffs and preventing the Red from converting on goal-scoring opportunities. In the second frame, the Crimson scored another goal and finished an additional two empty net goals in the final period, defeating the Red, 4-1.
This loss marked Cornell’s first defeat to Harvard since 2016. In addition, the team, having lost to Mercyhurst the prior weekend, matched its total number of losses (2) from the 2019-20 season.
Junior forward Izzy Daniel stated that the team’s struggle is in part due to the team’s low level of experience in Ivy League play.
“We have such a young team this year that at the beginning of the season and throughout the year we’re going to experience bumps in the road, so it’s just a matter of how we respond and sticking together, coming together and playing the right way when it really matters,” Daniel said. “We definitely are still growing as a group and finding our way as a team.”
The following day, the Red tested its luck against Dartmouth (1-2-0, 1-2-0) at the Thompson Arena in Hanover, New Hampshire. The Green proved to be an evenly-matched opponent for the Red, trading shots throughout the game.
Jockims scored her second career goal within the first four minutes of the game, setting the pace as Dartmouth returned with a goal to finish the first period, 1-1.
In the second period, senior defenseman Athena Song secured her first career goal with the assistance of Daniel. However, Dartmouth slipped an additional two goals past the Red’s goaltender, graduate student Lindsay Browning, to gain a 3-2 lead by the end of the 2nd.
In the 3rd, Frechette lobbed a pass to freshman forward Rory Guilday, who shot the puck past four of the Green’s players and the goaltender during a power play, netting the third goal for the Red. Shortly thereafter, the Green snapped back to score on its own power play, winning the game, 4-3.
Frechette stated that the team looks to redeem themselves during next weekend’s games.
“After this weekend, it’s definitely not where we wanted to be and not where our expectations are,” Frechette said. “We are definitely looking forward to proving ourselves again this weekend, coming out, and hopefully having a better result.”
Daniel expressed similar sentiments about their return to the ice.
“We’re all just excited to get back on the ice and prove that we are a really good team and show people that last weekend doesn’t define us,” Daniel said. “We’re hoping to bounce back and hopefully get the train turned around and pointed in the right direction.”
The Red will return home to Lynah Rink on Nov. 5 and 6 to face off against Yale (2-2-0, 0-2-0) and Brown (0-3-1, 0-2-0).