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NCAA Week 19 Preview: Battle for the CHA title

Robert Morris and Syracuse will battle it out in an important CHA matchup this weekend

CHA rivals Robert Morris University and Syracuse University have an important matchup coming up this week.
Justin Berl/RMU Athletics

With the lead in the CHA on the line, nationally ranked Robert Morris will look to continue the success they have seen this season. Having seen their lead slip to two points, Robert Morris knows this series may determine who wins the CHA regular season. Syracuse has seen a mix of success and failure this season. Their overall record is 9-10-5 but they can still make the NCAA tournament if they manage to win the CHA season. With CHA playoff seeding on the line, both teams know that these games are must-wins.

John Mazza previews Week 19:

No. 7 Robert Morris @ Syracuse, Friday Jan. 27 and Saturday Jan. 28

  • Robert Morris skated to overtime in both games against CHA rival Mercyhurst, winning one but tying the second.
  • After a scoreless two periods, both Robert Morris and Mercyhurst scored in the third, sending the game to overtime. When on the power play, senior Maeve Garvey (Oakville, ON) found the back of the net and won the game for RMU.
  • With goals from Jaycee Gebhard (Plenty, SK), Amanda Pantaleo (Markham, ON), and Brittany Howard (St. Thomas, ON) RMU took a 3-2 lead in the second. However, Mercyhurst scored in the third knotting the game a three apiece.
  • With a sweep against Lindenwood, Syracuse can now take first place in the CHA with a sweep of RMU.
  • The Orange came out firing on all cylinders in the 5-0 shutout of Lindenwood. Savannah Rennie (East St. Paul, MB), Larissa Martyniuk (Winnipeg, MB), and Allie Munroe (Yarmouth, NS) all scored in the first period giving Syracuse a solid lead right from the start.
  • In the next game, it took until the third for scoring to open up. With her first game-winner of the season, Emily Costales (Vancouver, BC) just a minute and a half into the final period and the Orange went on to win 3-0.

Northeastern @ New Hampshire, Saturday Jan. 28

  • Northeastern took two important Hockey East wins last week against UConn as we draw closer to the end of the regular season.
  • With her 20th goal of the season, junior McKenna Brand (Nevis, MN) pushed Northeastern over UConn for a 3-2 lead.
  • Brand was the hero again on Saturday, where she scored the game-winning goal late in regulation. Brand now leads the NCAA in goals with 21 goals in 27 games played.
  • UNH saw a sweep of their own, defeating Maine at home last weekend.
  • With a career-high three points, Devan Taylor (North Billerica, MA) led the Wildcats to a 4-1 win against the Black Bears.
  • Facing 22 shots, Hilary Cashin (Fredericton, NB) stopped all of them, leading to a 7-0 shutout. This is Cashin’s first career shutout.

No. 10 Colgate @ Harvard, Friday Jan. 27

  • Colgate started its weekend hot with a win against St. Lawrence but could not defeat Clarkson the next day.
  • Down 3-2 midway through the third, Shelby Perry (Elginburg, ON) put the puck past the St. Lawrence netminder to tie the game. In overtime, Bailey Larson (Sycamore, IL) scored the game-winning goal for the Raiders.
  • Olivia Zafuto (Niagara Falls, NY) tied the game at one late in the first when Colgate faced Clarkson. The Raiders managed to hold off the Golden Knights through the second but with an early Clarkson goal in the third, Colgate fell 2-1.
  • Harvard also split the weekend, taking a win against Brown, but falling to Yale.
  • Ali Peper (Arvada, CO) scored the game-winning goal against Brown. When on the power play in the third period, Peper took a one-time shot and found the back of the net.
  • Down 3-0 after just over 25 minutes, started to rally. Haley Mullins (East Greenwich, RI) and Kaitlin Tse (Toronto, ON) both scored before the end of the second. However, the game saw a goalless third period and Harvard lost 3-2.

No. 9 Cornell @ Dartmouth, Friday Jan. 27

  • Facing off against the top teams in the ECAC, Cornell proved they could hold their own after defeating Clarkson but losing to St. Lawrence.
  • With a career-high 29 saves, Marlène Boissonnault (Dundee, NB) was the backstop the Big Red needed as they edged out Clarkson 2-1.
  • Kristin O’Neill (Oakville, ON) scored a short-handed goal in the 5-2 loss to St. Lawrence. She now leads the NCAA in short-handed goals with four.
  • On the road, Dartmouth could not score and fell to Yale and Brown.
  • With 29 saves, goaltender Robyn Chemago (Slave Lake, AB) did all she could to help her team, but without a goal the Big Green lost 3-0.
  • Chemago again had a great night in net against Brown making 30 saves. Despite some good looks from Kate Landers (Chicago, IL) and Mackenzie St. Onge (Stowe, VT) Dartmouth was again shut out 1-0.

Ohio State @ No. 2 Minnesota-Duluth, Friday Jan. 27 and Saturday Jan. 28

  • Facing powerhouse Minnesota, Ohio State held their own, coming out of the weekend with a loss and a shootout win.
  • With a goal from Julianna Iafallo (Eden, NY) at 4:48 in the second, Ohio State took a 1-0 lead against the Gophers. The Buckeyes held this lead until midway through the third and Minnesota scored two unanswered goals defeating Ohio State 2-1.
  • Katie Matheny (St. Louis, MO) tied the game for the Buckeyes early in the third period. With the teams still tied 1-1 after the overtime period, it took a seven round shootout to decide the game. Iafallo found the back of the net and won the game for Ohio State.
  • With a win and a tie last week against Bemidji, UMD managed to hold onto its No. 2 place in the polls.
  • Lara Stalder (Luzern, Switzerland) might be the hottest player in college hockey right now. Her hat trick and an assist led the Bulldogs to a decisive 5-1 victory over the Beavers.
  • Stalder opened up scoring the next day just eight seconds into the game, the fastest goal in UMD history. Duluth went on to tie Bemidji 2-2.

Note: All rankings listed are from Week 18’s SB Nation’s Women’s College Hockey Division 1 Poll.