(Photo: Nicholas Badders/WCSN)
After a long day of traveling, Lindsey Ellis and the Arizona State women’s club hockey team fell to Miami 4-0 in the first of a two-game series with the Redhawks. The second game didn’t look much better, as the team lost 10-1 in Oxford, Ohio on Saturday.
It might seem frightening to see the team give up 14 goals to No. 6 Miami, but everyone in the program chalked it up to a learning experience, especially Saturday’s loss.
“I definitely think that it’s not how we know how to play hockey,” assistant captain Taylor England said after the series’ conclusion. “I think that the more that they kept scoring the more that we were getting down on ourselves. It’s also that we’re tired and our legs hurt especially from traveling all day but that’s when today’s game becomes a mental game and we just need to dig down deep and play hockey the way that we know how… We play the basics, we don’t panic, we don’t think about how we are playing the game too much and I think we do well when we do that.”
The team had not lost a game like the Saturday contest since their inaugural season when they fell to Colorado 10-1 in the second game of last season.
Friday night’s score did not reflect how the game transpired. The Redhawks came out strong, dominating a good chunk of the first period. However, the Sun Devils held their own and started to generate offensive after their penalty kills.
With less than ten minutes left in the first period. Molly Potter, Dannika Borges and Catherine Jones all had opportunities to score before Miami.
Near the end of the first, the Sun Devils thought they would escape with a scoreless period, but Miami put two goals in the back of the net before intermission.
Emily Sloan backhanded one past Jordan Nash-Boulden. She was assisted by Ellen Chiligiri., who then put the puck away with less than a minute left to make the game 2-0.
In the second period, the Sun Devil offense was almost nonexistent. But, ASU continued to hold on until the final three minutes of the second period. Darby Edmondson had her back facing away from the goal, was passed the puck and then turn to shoot it through the Nash-Boulden’s five-hole.
In the first two minutes of the third and final period Sarah Peterson tipped the puck into the net making the game 4-0, butt the Devils continued to push through.
In both the first and second periods on Friday, ASU hung on to Miami until the very end before intermission.
Saturday’s 10-1 loss to the Redhawks was a different story compared to Friday night.
“It was a good learning experience,” assistant coach Katie McGovern said after Saturday’s game. “At least we got that out of the way heading into playoffs.”
The first seven minutes of the game seemed hopeful for the Sun Devils, After being called for their first penalty, the game went downhill.
Miami started off their five-goal run in the first period with a power play goal from senior Katie Baldwin. Baldwin also scored the third goal of the period for the Redhawks.
Two freshmen led the Redhawks in their victory Saturday, as Katie Sciales and Emily Sloan both earned themselves hat tricks.
Sloan scored two goals in the first period, Sciales also had one more.
The second period wasn’t much different for the Sun Devils. Minimal offensive opportunities and lack of clearing the puck from the zone didn’t help the team.
Sloan put away her hat trick first a little over five minutes into the period
Chiligiris earned her second goal in two days during a power play, which hurt the Devils all day. The Redhawks scored off of three power plays in the game.
With three assists in two days, Amanda Pugliese also contributed to the 10-goal win. The period was finished off by Sciales, who scored two more goals to reach her hat trick.
The final period against Ellis’ alum was a win for the Sun Devils. ASU did not allow a goal, instead scoring their first and only of the series.
“When we’re down 10 to zero it’s hard,” Jones said. “We came in the locker room and we were like, ‘It doesn’t matter what the score is, just give it your all for the last period.'”
Jones settled the puck away after receiving a pass from Alyssa Ayers, which erased the shutout for ASU.
“I think that once we scored and that other goal didn’t count, I think that we had more of a positive attitude,” England said. “We weren’t thinking about the score so much we were thinking about playing our positions and that’s the mental game.”
Even with seven minutes left in the game, the Devils persevered with their heads held high making sure another goal wouldn’t go in.
“We won the third period, “McGovern said. “That was good for us having good momentum going into tomorrow.”
The Sun Devils aren’t done in the Midwest just yet. Tomorrow at 11:30 a.m., the team plays at Ohio State for their final regular season game. Ohio State has not won a single season all game, but that doesn’t mean the team should turn the other cheek.
“We don’t want to go in thinking that we are just going to stomp all over them that’s not the players we are,” England said.