Julia Mulhern '12 Nets Deciding Goal w/5:22 Left to Give Cards 1st Win of Year, 3-2 over St. Mike's
Julia Mulhern '12 (#5, main photo) scored her first goal of the season from in close on the left at 14:38 of the third period with an assist from Heather Lindgren '11, breaking a 2-2 tie and propelling Wesleyan to its initial victory of the year in the first-ever meeting with St. Michael's College Wed., Jan. 5, 3-2.
St. Michael's carried a 2-1 lead into the third period and outshot Wesleyan 46-24 in the contest including 12-5 in the final stanza. But goalie Nicole Bonneau '13 (#30, photo insert upper middle), making her first start for Wesleyan, came up with some solid work with 44 saves including a key stop with 6:20 to go and the score tied on a backhand from the right side by St. Michael's top scorer. The Purple Knights had scored just 1:27 into the game and their go-ahead goal in the second period came short-handed.
Wesleyan evened the count at 8:47 of the third period when Emma Ram '11 got her opening goal of the season on a point shot from the left side which slipped past a screened Purple Knight keeper. Wesleyan answered St. Mike's first-period goal with one of its own at 14:03 as Becca Koppel '13, who carried the puck from center ice into the zone, skated in for a shot which was initially stopped but Koppel collected the rebound on the right and found the net to make it a 1-1 game. That tied her for the team lead in goals this year with three.
Both goalies came up with a stop on an opponent breakaway during the game as Bonneau stopped a St. Mike's attempt with 11:20 left in the first period with the visitors leading 1-0 at the time. Izzy Huston '10 moved in behind the Purple Knight defense and was stopped on her try only 27 seconds before Ram tied the count for the Cardinals in the third period.
Wesleyan returned to NESCAC play with a visit from Little Three rival Williams Fri., Jan. 8. After a scoreless first period, Williams picked up three goals in the second stanza, one of them short-handed, and two in the third, one of them with a two-man advantage, to come away with a 5-0 win. Wesleyan keeper Ashleigh Corvi '13 collected 37 saves in the contest as Williams enjoyed a 42-8 edge in shots.
As the Cardinals closed out the NESCAC weekend vs. Middlebury Sat., Jan. 9, Corvi upped her save total to 49 and Leah Coe '11 picked up her first goal of the season during the second period, a power-play marker, making the score 3-1 at the time. But the Panthers, ranked fifth nationally in Division III to start the week, tacked on three goals in the final period to grab a 6-1 win. Wesleyan has yet to beat Middlebury in 43 all-time meetings (0-40-3). Two of the Panther goals came while Middlebury enjoyed a man-advantage.
The Cardinals move out-of-conference once again for their next outing, hosting Plymouth St. Tues., Jan. 12.
(photos courtesy of SteveMcLaughlinPhotography,com)