Colgate's record-setting season came to an end here Sunday at Ridder Arena in the national championship game.
The No. 3 Raiders finished as national runners-up, falling to No. 1 and defending champion Clarkson 2-1 in overtime.
and Olivia Zafuto
were named to the all-tournament team following Sunday's game.
This is Colgate's best postseason run in program history. Prior to this season, the furthest they had advanced was the ECAC Hockey semifinals.
Colgate finished the season with an overall mark of 34-6-1. Their 34 victories are the most in program history, surpassing the previous high of 22 set in each of the last two seasons.
Clarkson held a 1-0 lead after the first period, but the opening stanza was neck-and-neck. Both teams fired a total of 15 shots. Golden Knights' forward Cassidy Vinkle opened the scoring with 3:31 left in the first period.
The Raiders evened the tally with 1
7:33 left to play in the second period with a goal from Malia Schneider
on a 2-on-1 chance. The first-year forward's attempt was perfectly set up by Zafuto, who lured the defender, while Schneider worked her way to the opposite post. Zafuto sent the puck over to Schneider who buried it into the back of the net.
Neither team could break the draw through the remainder of regulation as both goaltenders made key saves down the stretch to keep the game tied.
Clarkson's Elizabeth Giguere netted the game winner on a breakaway 7:55 into the extra frame.
finished with 35 saves on 37 shots faced, making several key stops throughout the afternoon. She finished the season with a .929 save percentage and a 1.77 goals against average, both of which are the second highest marks in program history.
Clarkson 2, Colgate 1
The Raiders finished the season with an overall record of 34-6-1, while Clarkson finished at 36-4-1.
KEY RAIDER INFO
-This marks the longest postseason run in Colgate women's hockey program history.
-The Raiders had several program firsts this season, including a regular season ECAC Hockey title, an appearance in the conference title game and an NCAA Tournament bid, not to mention advancing to the Women's Frozen Four.
-The Raider senior class of Wilson-Bennett, Kaila Pinkney
, Shelby Perry
, Megan Sullivan
, Ellie DeCaprio
, Annika Zalewski
and Lauren Wildfang
witnessed the turnaround of the program. Their freshman year, the team won just seven games. Their senior year they finished as national runners-up.
FACTS AND FIGURES
-This is just the third national championship game to go to overtime.
-Schneider tallied her 16th goal this season and ended the year tied for third on the team.
-Zafuto, who had the primary assist on Schneider's goal, added her 33rd point of the season, the third most by any defender in the nation.
-Wilson-Bennett was also credited with an assist on the goal, marking her 22nd of the season. The assist was her fifth point of the Frozen Four.
-Vandyk had 80 saves in the Frozen Four for the second most all-time.
FROM THE SOURCE
Head Coach Greg Fargo
"Congratulations to Clarkson on a great game, another national championship today. That was a great hockey game. Four overtime games this weekend, I don't think you can ask for much more in terms of the display of talent out on the ice; it was phenomenal. Obviously, it's a heartbreaking moment for us in the game, but I'm so incredibly proud of this team for not only the way that they played but the way that they handled themselves all year. This is a group that is unlike any other that I've ever coached, and I'm just really proud to be their coach. It would have been great to win today, but I'm leaving here and they should leave here with their heads high because of everything they've accomplished this year. It's been a blast."
Senior Forward Annika Zalewski
"I guess it is almost a complete turnaround. There is a lot of talk about that seven-win season [2014-15] and now obviously in four years we are here. It's just been us trusting the process every step of the way and the seven of us seniors knew what we wanted to do when stepped on campus, so we've just been chipping away at it. Obviously, it's not just the seven of us, our entire team, staff, and Colgate as a whole gave so much support. It's been a cool journey, definitely a lot of progress has been made and it is something to be proud of."
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