|New England College||University of New England|
BIDDEFORD, Maine — Gabby Crugnale scored a power-play goal at 7:34 of the third period to break a 3-3 tie and give the University of New England a 4-3 victory over New England College in New England Hockey Conference (NEHC) women’s action Friday afternoon at the Harold Alfond Forum.
UNE improved its record to 8-10-2 and 5-6-1 in conference play, while the Pilgrims dropped to 5-14-1 (3-9-0 NEHC).
Crugnale’s game-winner came on a one-timer from the lower part of the right circle after Mary Wirth found Crugnale with a pass from the high slot. Kierra Wright was credited with a secondary assist on the play.
The Nor’easters had built a 2-0 lead with a goal late in the first and another early in the second. Shannon Smith got the game’s first goal with a wrister from the top of the left circle. Smith’s unassisted power-play tally came at 16:10 of the opening frame. Marykate Drinkwater doubled UNE’s lead at 6:41 of the middle period, stuffing home a rebound after shots by Haley Gorman and Annie Mullen had been stopped by NEC goaltender Ashley Castriotta.
The Pilgrims would respond with consecutive goals 1:30 apart during the middle portion of the second to tie the game, 2-2. Alexis Severance spotted Marisa Roth behind the UNE defense, and Roth converted a breakaway for her seventh goal of the year, which came at 10:49. Megan Servaes struck less than two minutes later with her team on a power play, redirecting a shot in heavy traffic in front of the net. Tori Polehonka and Roth assisted on the play.
UNE grabbed a 3-2 lead with 2:05 remaining in the period when Emily Corrales tipped in the puck from the right doorstep. Abby Kinens had an assist.
NEC would draw even once again at 5:40 of the third on an unassisted marker by Rachel Vigliano. Vigliano won a face-off from the left circle before doing some slick stick-handling and beating UNE goaltender Sydney Helmbrecht five-hole for her team-best 10th goal of the season.
Crugnale’s game-winner less than two minutes later was her team-leading sixth power-play goal of the season.
Helmbrecht had 33 saves to post the victory, while Castriotta finished with 30 for NEC.