Quinnipiac women’s ice hockey dominated by Colgate in ECAC Hockey semifinal loss


Zack Hochberg

Quinnipiac women’s ice hockey has been eliminated in the ECAC Hockey semifinals by Colgate in three consecutive seasons.

Cameron Levasseur, Sports Editor

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – Quinnipiac women’s ice hockey held Colgate to a single goal in a strong regular-season sweep. But the No. 2 seed Raiders proved the third time’s the charm Friday evening, putting on a dominating 60 minute performance to down the Bobcats 5-1 and advance to the ECAC Hockey championship game.

Colgate controlled nearly all of the opening frame. The Raiders piled shot after shot on Bobcats’ graduate student goaltender Logan Angers – who held strong until the period’s dying minutes. 

With 46 seconds before the intermission, sophomore forward Neena Brick broke into the offensive zone and fired a shot off Angers’ pads. The shot landed perfectly on the stick of sophomore forward Katie Chan, who buried the rebound to give the Raiders a 1-0 lead. 

Stifling defensive play from Colgate held Quinnipiac’s offense firmly in check. The Raiders attacked the puck carrier on the break-in layer by layer. If the first defender didn’t break up the play, the second did, leaving the Bobcats with just one shot on net after 20 minutes. 

“We came out with really good jump in our game,” Colgate head coach Greg Fargo said. “The first 10 minutes of that game we didn’t give them a whole lot of room to breathe. That’s kind of something we’ve been talking about all season long, just how important our starts are.”

The Raiders picked up right where they left off in the second period. Junior forward Kalty Kaltounkova came in two-on-one off the opening face-off and delivered a gorgeous behind-the-back pass to senior forward Kaitlyn O’Donohue, who out-deked Angers to extend Colgate’s lead to two. 

Despite the poor start, Quinnipiac head coach Cass Turner is proud of how her team competed throughout the game. 

“I thought our team showed a lot of heart, a lot of fight today,” Turner said. “We didn’t start the game we needed to, but I thought we kept fighting throughout the game. There was no quit in our game, and I think that’s important.”

The Bobcats managed some of their best pressure of the game in the period’s middle minutes, including a shot from senior forward Jess Schryver that Raiders’ sophomore goaltender Hannah Murphy just got a piece of. Colgate quickly regained its stride following a successful penalty kill and dug Quinnipiac’s grave even deeper. 

Chan repaid the favor on the goal Brick delivered her earlier in the game, sending a saucer pass over a Bobcat defender’s extended stick for a Brick one-timer past Angers. 

When it rains it pours. Less than two minutes after Brick’s tally, junior forward Dara Greig shelved a backhander from the left hash marks to send Colgate into the third period with a controlling 4-0 lead. 

Goals up and down the lineup characterized the Raiders’ game, not only in the semifinal matchup, but throughout the entire season.

“I think our depth up front has been a really important part of our success this year,” Fargo said. “We feel like everybody up and down the lineup can contribute, and it’s nice when you don’t have to rely on the same cast of characters every single night.”

Frustration for Quinnipiac was evident as the clock wound down. Despite being NCAA Division I’s most disciplined team this season (averaging just 4.3 penalty minutes per game), the Bobcats engaged in several net-front shoving matches as their anger boiled over. 

Heading to the power play with just under eight minutes remaining in the game, Turner took a page out of her colleague, Quinnipiac men’s hockey head coach Rand Pecknold’s book, pulling Angers early to give her squad a six-on-four opportunity. 

The risk paid off, as senior forward Alexa Hoskin buried a rebound off a point shot from junior defenseman Kendall Cooper following a dominating stretch from the Bobcats. The goal cut their deficit to three and injected life into the team. 

The Raiders took another penalty shortly thereafter, sending Angers back to Quinnipiac’s bench, but this time it was the Raiders who found twine. Senior forward and ECAC Hockey Player of the Year Danielle Serdachny buried the puck into the empty net to return Colgate’s lead to four and seal the game 5-1. 

Quinnipiac dominated a significant portion of the third period, outshooting their opponents 20-8. But a strong performance from Murphy in net stymied nearly every shot the Bobcats put on net. 

“(I was) definitely just trying to do what I can to keep the puck out of the net,” Murphy said. “Focusing on one save at a time and it helps when our team plays such amazing defense.”

With the win, the Raiders advance to face No. 4 Clarkson Saturday at 4 p.m. The Golden Knights upset top-seeded Yale in double overtime of the opening semifinal game to punch their ticket to the conference championship game for the first time since 2019. 

Quinnipiac maintains its PairWise position at No. 8 despite the loss, which has it in position to claim an at-large bid into the NCAA Tournament come Selection Sunday. But potential championship upsets by Clarkson (ECAC Hockey), Providence (Hockey East) and Mercyhurst (CHA), along with the obligatory NEWHA bid could put the Bobcats on the tournament bubble.

Turner knows that if Quinnipiac is still in the fray next weekend, it needs to come in with a stronger mindset than on Friday. 

“I think our mentality and our grit in tough moments needs to be better to be able to do what we think we can in the NCAA Tournament.”