Courtesy Bowdoin Sports Information
BRUNSWICK, Maine – Stephanie Ludy scored the game-winning goal with 21 seconds left in overtime to lift the Bowdoin College women's ice hockey team to a 3-2 win over Williams in the quarterfinals of the NESCAC Tournament Saturday at Sidney J. Watson Arena.
The victory propels Bowdoin (12-9-4) to the NESCAC Semifinals next weekend at Middlebury College where they will play Amherst. Williams finishes its season with a record of 11-14-0.
Kayte Holtz finished with two goals and an assist for Bowdoin, including a helper on the game-winning score. Goaltender Kayla Lessard was outstanding in net for the Polar Bears, stopping 38 shots, including 25 in the third period and overtime. Sam Weinstein and Andree Heller accounted for Williams goals with Chloe Billadeau stopping 33 shots for the Ephs.
A loose puck in the neutral zone resulted in the game's first goal as Cristina Bravi and Sam Weinstein played give-and-go on a breakaway with Weinstein depositing it through the leg pads of Lessard at 7:56. Bowdoin was able to even the score on the power play late in the period when Kim Tess-Wanat found Holtz sitting on the back post at 19:23.
The Polar Bears wasted little time grabbing the lead in the second period, as Chelsea MacNeil collected the puck on the boards and slipped a pass through to Holtz in the slot, who rammed it home just 10 ticks into the frame.
Williams came out well in the third period and tested Lessard with several good chances in the opening five minutes of the frame. The Ephs broke through on the power play with 12:40 remaining as Andree Heller redirected an Ally Ensor shot from the point to deadlock the game at two apiece. The teams skated dead-even for the remainder of the period and Williams netminder Chloe Billadeau sent the game to overtime with a fantastic pad save off the stick of Holtz with 12 seconds remaining in regulation.
Lessard answered the bell early in overtime for Bowdoin, making an excellent stop off a shot in front by Aimee Dennett. The junior goaltender made 14 saves in the extra session to keep the Polar Bears alive.
With seconds ticking away and the game seemingly destined for a second overtime, Holtz controlled the puck in neutral ice and made a push into the Williams zone along the boards. The puck rattled to the left corner, where MacNeil fed the puck in front to Ludy, who got a piece of the centering feed. The puck popped into air and sailed over the shoulder of Billadeau into the net for the game-winning score.
The Polar Bears went 1-4 on the power play while the Ephs went 1-3. More information regarding NESCAC Tournament game times and ticket information will be available on Monday.