Late Third-Period Goals Lead To Series Sweep
NORTHFIELD, Minn. (11/10/12)—For the second straight day Concordia scored the game-winning goal against St. Olaf in the final 8-minutes of play and came away with a 3-2 win. The second consecutive 3-2 win over the Oles helps the Cobbers sweep the two-game series.
On Saturday it was Jenna Westerham who notched the game-winning goal in the final half of the third period. Westerham finished off a pass from Anna Westmark at the 12:51 mark to give Concordia their third lead of the game – a lead they wouldn't relinquish for the remainder of the period.
Westerham's first goal of the season helped Concordia start the 2012-13 conference season with a 2-0-0 mark. The Cobbers are now 3-1-2 in their first six overall games. St. Olaf, who entered the series having lost only once all year, falls to 2-3-1 in all games and begins the league campaign in a two-loss hole.
One of the big keys for the Cobbers on the weekend was the play of sophomore forward Madison Gendreau. Gendreau had a hand in all three goals in Friday's 3-2 win, including the game-winning goal while CC was killing off a penalty, and then added an assist on the second goal on Saturday. Gendreau's four-point weekend pushes her season total to five points – third best on the team.
Friday's win was a completely different story as Concordia had to overcome a tw0-goal deficit in the first 9:17 of the opening period. The Oles scored at the 48-second mark and then went ahead 2-0 before the period was half over. Neither team would score in the second and then the Cobbers would start their three-goal comeback less than five minutes into the final frame.
Breann Julius got the Cobbers on the board at 4:09 with assists going to Gendreau and Macy Leland. The lead would hold at 3-1 until the final six minutes of play. Brittany Oliver evened the score with her first goal of the season at the 14:43 mark and then Gendreau capped the comeback when she scored the team's first shorthanded just over a minute later at 15:49. Gendreau and Julius had the helpers on Oliver's goal and Abby Taffe picked up her first point of the weekend with an assist on the game winner.
Concordia held a decided 35-24 edge in shots on Friday. Neither team was able to score on the power play and both had five man-advantage chances.
Concordia split the goaltending duties. Rebecca Hendrickson played the first period and made five saves and then freshman Madison Denny blanked the Oles in the final 40-minutes of play, making 17 saves.
Saturday's game was a different tale as Concordia went out to a 1-0 lead and then a 2-1 lead margin before winning it late. Taffe scored the opening goal of the game on the power play in the final minute of the opening period. After St. Olaf tied the game with the lone goal of the second period, CC put up two on the board in the third frame. Julius scored her team-leading fourth goal of the year to make it 2-1 and then Westerham came through with the final tally of the weekend at the 13:51 mark.
Concordia wound up outshooting the Oles 37-35 in a wide-open offensive affair. Denny played all 60 minutes on Saturday and stopped 33 of the 35 shots she faced.
Concordia was 2-for-6 on the power play and for the second straight game held the Oles without a power play goal. St. Olaf was 0-for-6 on the power play in the game and 0-for-11 for the weekend. CC has only given up two power play goals in the opponents 31 chances on the year.
The Cobbers will return to Moorhead to host their home opener next weekend when they square off against Bethel on Friday, Nov. 16 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, Nov. 17 at 2 p.m.