MANCHESTER, N.H. – Senior Paige Gorecki scored the game-tying goal midway through the third period and sophomore Michaela Kane made a career-high 26 saves for the Saint Anselm College women's ice hockey team in a 1-1 tie against non-conference foe Williams College on Tuesday evening at Sullivan Arena.
Williams (9-4-5) took a 1-0 lead on a Gabby Montembeault goal early 7:01 into the opening period and held the lead until Gorecki's goal at 8:54 of the third for Saint Anselm (14-2-3). Kane made big saves in the final 30 seconds of the third period and the overtime period as the Hawks and Ephs played to the first tie in the all-time series, which Saint Anselm now leads 6-2-1. The tie was the second in a row for both teams.
Early in the first, the visitors went ahead on Montembeault's first-career goal, which was set up by Mia Carrol and Anna Fucillo. Carroll chipped the puck up the right boards to Fucillo, who collected the puck at center ice before drawing a pad save from Kane from the right faceoff dot. The rebound, however, fell to Montembeault to put home on the left side.
With Williams continuing to hold the 1-0 lead, both teams had three shots on goal in a back-and-forth, three-minute sequence in the middle of the period. Sophomore Kaley Campbell started the flurry by speeding up the right and drawing a pad save from Christina Cleroux with the rebound just eluding freshman Katy Meehan on the back post. A minute later, Kane produced back-to-back saves on efforts by Annie Rush and Abby Brustad from the left side.
Sophomore Mary Morrison had the final two chances of the sequence, drawing a pad save from Cleroux from the right point and firing a wrist shot into Cleroux's glove from the top of the right circle. Three minutes after Morrison's second chance, Brynn Puppe had three shots on goal on a Williams power play, but Kane was equal to all three to keep it 1-0.
Inside the first 90 seconds of the third, Montembeault nearly doubled the Ephs' lead, but Kane fought off her shot from the right with her shoulder. Kane again thwarted Montembeault from the edge of the right circle nearest to the goal five minutes into the third on a Williams power play .
Saint Anselm found a tying goal on its lone power-play chance of the game midway through the third. Sophomore Megan Klaus started the goal, feeding the puck from the slot to Campbell in close on the left. Cleroux made a save with her left leg on Campbell's initial effort, but the rebound fell to Gorecki to bury on the backhand for her fourth goal of the season.
Williams had the best two chances to win it, but Kane denied Brustad in a 1-on-1 with 12.3 seconds remaining in the third with a glove save. She then squeezed a shot from Avery Dunn with 28.8 seconds left in overtime after Dunn cut in from the left and unleashed a shot from between the circle.
Cleroux made 29 saves in goal for Williams as she moved to 3-2-4 on the season. Kane remained unbeaten (3-0-1) with her 26-save effort as Saint Anselm held a 30-27 advantage in shots on goal in the game.
Saint Anselm finishes off a four-game homestand by hosting Post University this weekend for two games. The Hawks and Eagles start the series at 6 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 26.