WINCHENDON, Mass. (February 16, 2019) – Sophomore forward Nicole Amato (Billerica, Mass.) scored twice, and added an assist for a three-point afternoon on Saturday, as the Franklin Pierce University women’s ice hockey team notched a 5-1 win over visiting Post in the regular-season finale at the Jason Ritchie Ice Arena. Postgame, the Ravens honored junior Katie Neuburger (Fayetteville, N.Y.), who is graduating in just three years and celebrated her “Senior Day” following the New England Women’s Hockey Alliance contest.
With the win, Franklin Pierce improves to 19-9-1 (8-7-1 NEWHA), while Post falls to 6-26-0 (1-15-0 NEWHA). Franklin Pierce has qualified for next week’s NEWHA Championship as the third seed, and will face second-seeded Sacred Heart on Saturday, at Sullivan Arena on the campus of Saint Anselm College in Manchester, N.H. Game time is still to be announced.
Amato opened the scoring with the first of Franklin Pierce’s two shorthanded tallies on the day, at the 6:58 mark of the first period. She forced a turnover in the neutral zone and broke in all alone against Post freshman goaltender Kaitlyn Daly. Amato deked her way to the right post and slid home her 20th goal of the season. She is the first player in program history to score 20 goals in a season.
Freshman forward Kiki Doucette (Bridgewater, Mass.) followed up with her second goal of the campaign just 100 seconds later, at 8:38. Amato led a 2-on-1 into the offensive zone and cut to the right as she moved towards the net. She dropped a pass back against the grain, which sat at the top of the crease and left Doucette with an empty net for the easy finish.
The Ravens added another shorthanded tally in the second period to make it 3-0. Sophomore defenseman Carolyn Drowne (Bridgewater, Mass.) sent a pass ahead to spring sophomore forward Marissa Massaro (Brockton, Mass.) on a breakaway. The latter picked the top-left corner on the rush for her 13th goal of the year.
Junior forward Alli Sugar (Canton, Conn.) struck for her eighth of the season just 86 seconds into the third to push the lead to 4-0. She finished off a loose puck near the right post, while Massaro and sophomore forward Haley Parker (Londonderry, N.H.) provided the assists. For Parker, the assist marked her 40th point of the season. She became the first player in program history to reach the milestone.
Post picked up its only goal of the weekend with a power-play marker on a two-player advantage at 16:12. From the left side, sophomore defenseman Kayleigh Miller centered the puck for sophomore forward Kathleen Takita. Takita deflected it home at the top of the crease for her fifth goal of the season.
Franklin Pierce needed only 1:41 to answer and created the 5-1 final with a goal at 17:53. Much like her first goal, Amato forced a turnover in the neutral zone and broke in all alone. She made it 21 goals on the season to finish off her fifth multiple-goal game of the season and cap the scoring.
Junior goaltender Jessica Strack (Reading, Mass.) stopped 13 of 14 shots to pick up the win (4-2-0) in front of the Franklin Pierce net. Daly (2-9-0) made 58 saves against 63 shots at the other end and was stuck with the loss for Post.
For more information on Franklin Pierce Athletics, please visit the official website of Franklin Pierce Athletics (https://www.fpuravens.com). 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 hockey apparel can do so at the Department of Athletics’ online store (https://www.fpuravens.com/store).