SHELTON, Conn. (January 12, 2018) – With rain deluging the I-91 corridor outside, it was the Franklin Pierce University women's ice hockey team which opened the floodgates inside Sports Center of Connecticut on Friday afternoon. The Ravens poured in four goals in the first period and three more in the second period, on the way to a 9-1 road win over Post. Freshman forward Nicole Amato (Billerica, Mass.) found the net three times for her first career hat trick, and added four assists as well, to tally a season-best seven points. Franklin Pierce piled up a 59-14 advantage in shots in the game.
With the win, Franklin Pierce improves to 9-6-1, has won five in a row and is unbeaten in its last seven (6-0-1). Post fell to 2-13-2 with the loss. The two teams will meet again on Saturday to wrap up the weekend series. Opening faceoff is set for 2:15 p.m. at Sports Center of Connecticut.
Amato's three-goal outing marked the fifth hat trick in program history, and was the first such game by a freshman in program annals. She became just the second Raven to ever tally seven points in a game, joining current senior forward Alex Brolsma (Bloomington, Minn.), who collected seven points (2-5-7) in a game at Post last season, on Nov. 16, 2016.
The Ravens popped home three goals in the opening 10 minutes to seize control of the game early. Amato opened the scoring at the 3:05 mark, as she slipped a shot between the pads of Post sophomore goaltender Jenna Baumgartner from a sharp angle on the right-wing side for her eighth goal of the season. Freshman forward Marissa Massaro (Brockton, Mass.) and sophomore defenseman Delaney Guimont (Bedford, N.H.) provided the assists on the play.
Sophomore forward Kelsey Holmes (Warwick, R.I.) made it 2-0 just 3:01 later, at the 6:06 mark. She curled out of the right-wing corner and put a shot past Baumgartner from the right circle, while Amato and sophomore forward Meg Gilbride (Braintree, Mass.) provided the assists.
At 9:46, it was Brolsma who got in on the act, with her ninth of the campaign, as she salted away a rebound from the bottom of the left-wing circle. Freshman forward Haley Parker (Londonderry, N.H.) and Guimont picked up the helpers on the play.
Amato would bookend the period's scoring, at 11:45, and the Ravens would hold the 4-0 lead into the intermission. Her second goal of the game came as she put away the rebound of a Gilbride shot at the right post. Massaro added an assist on the tally as well.
Franklin Pierce pushed the lead out to 6-0 with a pair of goals in the first 11 minutes of the second period. Freshman defenseman Kara Santoro (Wolcott, Conn.) chalked up her second of the season at 3:55, as she put a rebound to the back of the net after a scramble in the crease. Freshman defenseman Carolyn Drowne (Bridgewater, Mass.) factored in on the goal as well, with the lone assist.
At 10:35, Massaro put away a goal to go with her two first-period assists. Gilbride led the rush into the zone on the left-wing side and cut towards the high slot, before dishing the puck to Amato on the right wing. Amato then centered to the top of the crease, where Massaro had an easy re-redirect to notch her fifth goal of the year.
Post picked up its only goal of the game just 93 seconds later, at 12:08. It was the first goal of the season for sophomore forward Kendall Fitzgerald, who jammed the puck home from the top of the crease. Junior forward Alana Lopez and freshman forward Paige Dundas provided the assists on the play.
Franklin Pierce reclaimed the six-goal lead before the second period was out. On a power play less than two minutes after the Fitzgerald goal, Brolsma possessed the puck down low on the right-wing side. She slipped a pass across the top of the crease for Parker, who banged home her sixth goal of the campaign at the right post. Amato notched an assist as well, at 13:58.
The Ravens added third-period goals from Amato and Drowne to create the 9-1 final. The former capped off her hat trick at 4:15 and later assisted on Drowne's third goal of the season at 7:11 to finish off the seven-point outing. Massaro assisted on the Drowne goal as well, to cap her own five-point day (1-4-5).
Senior goaltender Madison Murray (Berkley, Mich.) started in goal and made seven saves against eight shots over the first two periods to pick up the win (6-2-0) in net for Franklin Pierce. Sophomore Jessica Strack (Reading, Mass.) took over for the final frame and stopped all six shots she faced.
At the other end of the ice, Baumgartner (1-4-0) piled up 50 saves against 59 shots in a losing effort for Post. It was her second outing of 50 saves or more on the season, as well as the fourth of her career.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu). Also be sure to follow the Ravens through the Department of Athletics' official Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/FranklinPierceRavens), its YouTube channel (http://www.youtube.com/franklinpiercesports) and its Twitter feed (http://twitter.com/FPUathletics). Fans wishing to purchase Franklin Pierce women's ice hockey apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics' online store (http://athletics.franklinpierce.edu/store).