DURHAM, N.H. – Kristine Horn (Utica, Mich.) extended her goal-scoring streak to four games and the University of New Hampshire women's ice hockey team recorded a 33-14 shot advantage, but Syracuse University prevailed 2-1 Saturday evening at the Whittemore Center.
UNH, which had scored at least three goals each of the previous three games this season, is now 3-1-0. Syracuse levels its record at 2-2-0.
Syracuse goaltender Kallie Billadeau recorded double-digit saves in both the second (10) and third (13) periods en route to a 32-save effort. UNH goalie Jenn Gilligan (Maple Ridge, British Columbia) made of eight of her 12 saves in the second stanza.
The teams skated to a scoreless first period in which the Wildcats recorded a 9-3 shot advantage and both teams went 0-for-1 on the power play.
Four minutes into the middle frame, an Orange turnover deep in the zone set up Arielle O'Neill (St. Catharines, Ontario) at the right doorstep but Billadeau was in position for the save. The rebound went across the crease to an unmarked Kayla Mork (Victoria, Minn.), but she lifted a shot wide of the left post.
Three minutes later, Megan Skelly was denied twice by Gilligan at the right post. Moments later, Skelly was stoned again at the right post. The puck trickled across the goalmouth and Julie Knerr stuffed a shot into the open left side to give Syracuse a 1-0 lead at 8:14.
UNH was whistled for a penalty just eight seconds later, but the 'Cats generated the best scoring opportunity in the next two minutes on a shorthanded breakaway by O'Neill in which her shot from the hashmarks in the slot was blocked aside by Billadeau.
New Hampshire pulled even, 1-1, with a power-play goal at 14:31. Maggie Hunt (Naperville, Ill.) initiated the scoring sequence with a pass from the high slot to Nicole Gifford (Ennismore, Ontario), who was cutting through the right circle. Gifford controlled the puck and sent a pass across the slot to Horn, who lifted a shot over the sprawled-out Billadeau into the net.
In the closing minute of the first period, another series of quick passes set up another dangerous UNH opportunity. Jenna Lascelle (Cornwall, Ontario) executed a centering pass from the left boards to Kristina Lavoie (Fontill, Ontario), who found O'Neill down low. O'Neill's shot beat Billadeau but caromed off the left post.
The Orange regained the lead, 2-1, at 5:10 of the third period. Nicole Ferrara slipped a pass down the slot to Casey Hirsch at the top of the crease, and her shot trickled underneath Gilligan across the goal line. Sadie St. Germain was also credited with an assist.
At 6:30, Billadeau charged from the crease to the right circle, but she was unable to cover the loose puck. Hannah Armstrong (Newmarket, Ontario) dove towards the puck and swept a shot towards the open net, but Brittney Krebs retreated in time to deflect the puck wide of the left post.
Armstrong was denied again at 16:15 – just seconds after a UNH power play expired – as she gained possession behind the defense high in the slot and fires a wrister that was stopped by Billadeau. New Hampshire had maintained possession in the offensive zone and generated three shots for the initial 90 seconds of that power play.
The Wildcats called a timeout at 18:06 and pulled Gilligan in favor of an extra skater. Heather Kashman (Edmonton, Alberta), the reigning Pro Ambitions Hockey East Rookie of the Week, was denied by Billadeau, then with 45 seconds on the clock O'Neill once again hit the post.
Billadeau made one more save – denying Caroline Broderick (Marblehead, Mass.) in the closing seconds – to preserve the victory.
New Hampshire concludes its three-game homestand Oct. 14 against Boston College. Game time is 7 p.m. at the Whittemore Center. The teams complete a home-and-home series Oct. 15 (2 p.m.) at Conte Forum.