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Series Preview: PSU Hits the Road For First Meetings With Delaware


What: Penn State (7-1-0 overall, 3-1-0 College Hockey East) visits Delaware (4-6-1 overall, 0-3-1 College Hockey East) in a CHE series

When: Saturday, November 16th at 6:15 p.m. and Sunday, November 17th at 3:15 p.m.

Where: Fred Rust Ice Arena; Newark, DE

Notable: This season's ACHA national champion will be crowned at UD's Rust Arena, as it hosts the ACHA National Tournament from March 13th through 16th, 2014.

Game Notes

Double Dose of Delaware: Penn State will play its entire season series with Delaware in the space of four weeks, as the Blue Hens will make the trip to Hockey Valley on December 7th and 8th.

Series Success: After sweeping West Chester last weekend to flip the series history in its favor (at 3-2-0), the Women's Ice Hockey Club now has winning records against eight of the 10 opponents it has faced in two seasons. The exceptions: California, which has taken three of four meetings, and North Dakota State, which tied Penn State in an inconsequential meeting at the ACHA National Tournament in March subsequent to PSU locking up a semifinal bid.

Balanced Attack: PSU's 32 goals this season have come from 11 different players, of 15 non-goalies on the roster who have played in at least one game.

Topping The Charts: Despite that balance, Penn State still has numerous players who rank among the top ten in various ACHA Women's Division 2 statistics. Freshman Geneva Wagoner is tied for fifth in scoring with 11 points, while teammates Carly Szyszko and Devon Fisk are tied for tenth with eight. Wagoner and Fisk are tied for fifth with six goals, and Wagoner's five assists are tied for sixth. Tara Soukup's 19 penalty minutes rank eighth. Katie Vaughan and Sarah Eisenhut line the goaltending leaderboards, including in goals against average (first and second, respectively), save percentage (second and ninth), wins (first and sixth) and shutouts (both tied for second).

Milestone Watch (including statistics accumulated with the ACHA Division 1 Lady Icers from 2010-2012): Vaughan is one win from 30 for her career... Fisk needs one point to hit 30 in her 22 games so far... Szyszko and defender Allie Rothman are expected to play in their 75th career games on Saturday evening.

The Opponent

Name: University of Delaware
Nickname: Fightin' Blue Hens
Location: Newark, DE

Series History: Tied, 0-0-0. This weekend will mark the first-ever meetings between the WIHC and Delaware.

About Delaware: UD qualified for a fourth straight ACHA National Tournament last season (including a third-place finish in 2011) with an 11-4-0 regular season, but is off to a 4-6-1 start in 2013-14 - thanks largely to a tough schedule including CHE rivals California and West Chester, as well as Northeastern, the 2012 ACHA national champions at the Women's Division 1 level. Defender Alexx Good has been one of the ACHA's top freshman this season in a strong class of six rookie Blue Hens and holds an early lead in team scoring, while senior forward Samantha DiSabatino was second team all-tournament back in March. Senior captain Kelley Philbin and junior Kaitlyn Smith, a Newtown Square, PA native, have each popped in three goals so far. Sarah Ehrlich holds down the team's goaltending duties.

Trivia: Delaware's unique nickname is derived from the Kent County Blue Hen, a breed of chicken known for its cockfighting prowess in the 18th century. A local Revolutionary War company (led by Captain John Caldwell, a gamecock owner) often amused itself by staging cockfights and, due to that hobby and its own abilities in battle, soon won the nicknames "Caldwell's Gamecocks," "The Fighting Delawares" and "The Blue Hens' Chickens." UD adopted the nickname in 1911, and the Blue Hen Chicken has been the Delaware state bird since 1939.

Head Coach: Bobby Crystle (fourth season)
Goals Scored Per Game: 1.56
Goals Allowed Per Game: 3.67

Team Website:
http://www.udelhockey.com/w2/