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Women’s hockey advances to AUS semifinals

The Dalhousie women’s hockey team defeated the St. Thomas University Tommies 2-1 Feb. 21 to narrowly win the AUS quarterfinal best-of-three series two games to one.

The Tigers opened their postseason bid Feb. 18 on the road as the fifth ranked team in the AUS. Dal was unable to handle the relentless offence and quick pace of St. Thomas, falling behind 4-0 by the midway point of the second period. Head coach Sean Fraser pulled goaltender Jessica Severyns after allowing four goals on 18 shots, replacing her with second-year Jeanna Morin.

The Tigers found the back of the net three times in the second half of the contest, with goals from Maggie Beaton, Jennifer Thompson, and Elizabeth Macarthur. However, they couldn’t make up for their slow start, dropping game one by a score of 7-3.

Heading home and looking to even the series Thursday night at the Halifax Forum, the Tigers played a tight defensive game and outworked the Tommies for a full 60 minutes. Though Dal was outshot 41-26, the Tigers came out with a 3-2 victory over the Tommies to even the series as one game a piece.

The Tigers penalty kill turned out to be the difference maker in the game, shutting down the Tommies on each of their four power play opportunities. They even killed off a five on three in the first period.

The game went back and forth with the Dal’s Jesse Rietveld opening the scoring early in the opening frame. The Tommies went ahead midway through the second, but Dal’s Morgen Kidney got the equalizer with a power play goal from the point to tie the game at two.

The high-pace tilt continued through the third, with Dal looking to stay alive in the series. Though the Tigers were outshot, their ability to outwork the Tommies paid off as Marita Alfieri banged home the go-ahead goal after a three on one opportunity.

The Tommies pulled goalie Abby Clarke in the dying minutes of the game, but were unable to tie it, and the Tigers forced an elimination game on Saturday night. Severyns saved the game for her team, making 39 saves to lead the Tigers to victory after a slow, disappointing start.

On the road, with the season on the line, the Tigers were once again able to defeat the Tommies despite being heavily outshot.

Marita Alfieri kept up her scoring ways with her second of the series, tallying midway through the second, and Lisa Maclean gave the team a two goal lead scoring with 18 seconds left in the period.

That was all the offense the Tigers would need. With 34 saves from Severyns, the Tigers won the series 2-1.

Now Dal moves on to the AUS semifinals to take on the top-ranked St. FX X-Women.


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