Women's Hockey Advances to Frozen Four

The team celebrates freshman forward Jessica VonRuden's overtime game-winning goal against Elmira (Photo by Travis Larner).
The team celebrates freshman forward Jessica VonRuden's overtime game-winning goal against Elmira (Photo by Travis Larner).

PINE VALLEY, N.Y. – The Adrian College women's hockey team advanced to the second Frozen Four in program history on Saturday, March 9 with a 3-2 win over Elmira. It was the fourth time meeting the Soaring Eagles in the postseason, drawing the postseason record even at 2-2.

THE BASICS

Final Score: #4 Adrian 3, #2 Elmira 2 OT

Location: Pine Valley, N.Y. (Murray Athletic Center)

Records: Adrian 23-4-2, Elmira 24-3-1

HOW IT HAPPENED

Adrian wasted no time getting on the board, as senior Kortney Diaz knocked home a rebound on the power play 3:35 into the game. Junior forward Maggie Mitter controlled the puck on the power play and found senior linemate Jacqueline White for a shot. The goalie couldn't control the rebound and Diaz was there to jumpm on the loose puck and put it in for the early goal.

The Bulldogs doubled their lead with 4:29 left in the first period when freshman forward Jessica VonRuden went top-shelf on the Elmira goalie. Freshman defenseman Julia Barrett passed the puck up to Mitter, who chipped it on ahead to VonRuden. VonRuden used a slick toe drag to get past the last defender before firing the puck back across the goalie's shoulder for the goal.

Elmria's power play got the Soaring Eagles on the board with 7:38 showing on the clock in the second period. A shot came in from the outside and the puck was pushed in during the ensuing scramble. Elmira's power play struck again late in the period, when a perfectly-placed shot found the back of the Adrian net with 26 seconds left in the middle period.

Neither team could find the back of the net in the third and the game headed into overtime, tied 2-2. It marks the third game in a row that the Bulldogs have played in that have needed more than 60 minutes. AC tied Marian in the last game of the regular season and then beat St. Scholastica in a double overtime thriller to win the Slaats Cup. This is also the second time that the Bulldogs and Soaring Eagles have gone to overtime in the playoffs, with the Black and Gold prevailing in extra time in 2017.

It looked like the Bulldogs were destined for another double overtime game until VonRuden won the game with 2:24 left showing on the clock in overtime. She drove in the zone on the left side and fired a shot. Her initial shot was turned aside but she got her own rebound and put it home to end the game and send the Bulldogs through to the Frozen Four.

Elmira dominated most of the game, outshooting Adrian 52-28 and the Soaring Eagles showed why their power play was the best in the country, scoring both of their goals with the man advantage. But it wasn't enough to send the Bulldogs home early. AC is now in the Frozen Four for the second time in three years, and the second time in program history.

TOP DOGS

• VonRuden was the hero with two goals on the night, and Diaz added the other.

• Mitter had an assist on every Adrian goal, and White, Barrett, and junior forward Taylor Henthorne each had one assist.

• Freshman goaltender Denisa Jandova had an incredible 50 saves in the overtime victory. Her 50 saves are second-most in a game in program history.

THE OPPOSITION

• Kristen Chivers and Maddy Jerolman scored Elmira's goals.

• Jerolman, Ariella Haas, and Meg Lahey tallied assists.

• Stephanie Martin made 25 saves in the game.

UP NEXT

Adrian heads to the Frozen Four for the second time in school history, and the second time in three years. The Bulldogs will face Plattsburgh St. in the semifinals on Friday, March 15 at 4 p.m. ET. Adrian and Plattsburgh St. have met twice this year, with each team coming away with one win.

#GoBulldogs | #TheHustle