Closing out the first semester with a pair of non-conference contests, the Cardinals traveled to URI to take on Salve Regina Fri., Dec 7 and came away on the short end of a 5-3 count. It was a 4-3 game heading into the final minute, but the Seahawks won a face-off in their own end with :45 left and broke out of the zone to score an empty-net goal with :38 remaining to seal the win, their fourth in six all-time meetings with Wesleyan. Wesleyan ended the semester's action by hosting Sacred Heart Sat., Dec. 8. Wesleyan had posted a 4-2 win over the Pioneers earlier this year in Fairfield but Sacred Heart got a measure of revenge with a 5-3 win this time.
The Cardinals got a goal and an assist from both Jordan Schildhaus '15 (#19, photo insert upper right) and Cara Jankowski '15 (#9, main photo) at Salve to keep the game close. Wesleyan never led in the contest, coming back from a 1-0 deficit at 17:51 of the first period when Schildhaus netted her third goal of the season as Laura Mead '16 circled behind the net from the left side and found Jankowski on the right, who sent a pass to Schildhaus on the left for a rising shot from the edge of the circle.
Salve struck for three goals in the opening 14 minutes of the second period with the middle one coming on a power play, to pull out to a 4-1 advantage. But Wesleyan regained opts scoring edge and pumped in a pair in a span of just 1:38 late in the frame to cut the margin to 4-3. Hannah Jellinek '15 got her first of the year with a nice turnaround move and a low shot inside the near post from the left side after she intercepted a Salve pass at the top of the zone and worked a give-and-go with Kelsey Muller '13. Then Jankowski netted her second of the season off a perfect pass from Schildhaus deep in the zone after Becca Koppel '13 started the rush from center ice.
The teams played a scoreless third period as each team generated some good scoring chances. Still no one lit the lamp until the empty net goal in the final minute.
Wesleyan split time in goal between Laura Corcoran '16, who played the opening 30:34 and made 17 saves while allowing three goals, and Corinne Rivard '16, who played the final 29:24 and gave up a lone goal while turning aside 23 shots. Salve had a 45-24 edge in the shots department.
Against Sacred Heart, Wesleyan found itself in a 4-1 hole once again, this time before the first period ended. Schildhaus had the Cardinals' marker in the frame, and Becca Koppel '13 added the only goal of the second period on a flip from center ice that elluded the Pioneer keeper just 1:22 into the stanza. When Schildhaus got her second goal of the contest with 7:40 left in the game on the power play, Wesleyan trailed by a goal. Surviving a short-handed situation, Wesleyan then enjoyed two power-play chances but could not light the lamp again, despite pulling Ashleigh Corvi '13, who recorded 29 saves, for about a minute to enjoy a two-man edge. When Sacred Heart got control of the puck in center ice, Wesleyan again was touched for an empty-net tally and a two-goal loss.
Wesleyan will be back in game mode New Year's Day with a home game against another non-conference rival, New England College.