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Monday, Oct. 22, 2018
An unconventional split for L.U. hockey women
by Randy Pascal

The Laurentian Voyageurs women's hockey team picked up the split in a new, more unconventional way, following a pair of weekend home encounters at the Gerry McCrory Sports Complex.

A few years back, the OUA (Ontario University Athletics) moved to a system that guaranteed three points up for grabs in every game. A regulation win is now worth three points, an overtime or shootout win worth two, and an overtime or shootout loss valued at just one point.

Reflecting the overall balance within the league, the Voyageurs twice went beyond the sixty minutes of regulation time, earning mixed results in the process. On Saturday, Laurentian relinquished a 2-1 third period lead, but wasted little time in securing a second point, as Samantha Morell jammed home a rebound just 34 seconds into the extra session, vaulting the Voyageurs past the University of Toronto Blues 3-2.

Marie-Pierre Pelissou opened the scoring for the homeside, burying the only goal of period one as she followed up a hard drive to the next from Hearst native Amélie Samson. Marymount graduate Myla McCormick doubled the advantage late in the second, only to see Stephanie Ayres get that one back 68 seconds later.

A tally by Jessica Robichaud at 3:03 of the final frame set the stage for the heroics from Morell, at least partially due to another stellar effort between the pipes from Laurentian's Karen Collins. The third year puckstopper turned aside 40 of the 42 shots she faced, as she finished the weekend ranked second only to Jensen Murphy of Brock in total saves recorded this year (336 to 275).

Collins was right back at it on Sunday, riding a shutout into the third period when Sarah McGilvray of the Ryerson Rams balanced off an earlier marker from Laurentian's Nicole Vigilanti, leaving the contest deadlocked at 1-1 and heading to overtime.

Neither team could convert in the five minute three on three session, as both goalies maintained their stellar play through to the shootout. Brooklyn Gemmill finally solved Collins in round four of the penalty shot drama, lifting the Rams to a 2-1 win over the Voyageurs.

The three point weekend for coach Stacey Colarossi and company improved the Laurentian record to 2-1-4-2 (W-OTW-L-OTL), good for ten points. That leaves the locals sitting in 10th place (top eight advance to the playoffs), though a large number of teams remain in striking distance - UOIT (11), Toronto (13), Nipissing (16) and Ryerson (16), just for starters.

The blue and gold close out the first half of the 2017-2018 schedule with three road games, travelling to face the York Lions (3-0-7-1) and Waterloo Warriors (5-1-1-0) next weekend, and visiting the Windsor Lancers (0-1-7-2) on December 1st.

Northern Ontario AAA Hockey League
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