What: No. 12 Penn State (7-3-0 overall, 4-3-0 Eastern Collegiate Women's Hockey League) visits Northeastern (4-7-0 overall, 2-6-0 Eastern Collegiate Women's Hockey League) for an ECWHL series
When: Saturday, November 22nd at 9:30 p.m. and Sunday, November 23rd at 8:00 a.m.
Where: Matthews Arena; Boston, MA
Notable: The Lady Ice Lions complete their first pass through their five ECWHL opponents against the 2012 ACHA Division 1 national champs
Slippery Rocked: Last Friday, the Lady Ice Lions obliterated in-state rival Slippery Rock by a 15-3 count at Pegula Ice Arena. The game set team records for offensive output and margin of victory, while Darby Kern scored PSU's first-ever shorthanded goal. Most notably though, Tarika Embar, Emma Embar and Hannah Dier all scored their first collegiate goals (Tarika added a second for good measure), while Sumire Clevenger and Allyssa Long both played their first minutes in goal as Lady Ice Lions, with Clevenger starting and gaining the win. Penn State is now 4-0-0 all time against SRU, which plays in ACHA Division 2.
They Might Be Giants: The second ACHA ranking period ends on Sunday (with the poll results released next week), as Penn State looks to make a move into the top eight in order to qualify for the national championship tournament. Here's a look at each of the top 15, their season-to-date records in ACHA games, their results during this ranking period, and what they have on tap for this weekend.
- Miami (12-0-1 ACHA record): W 3-2 vs. Minnesota, W 5-0 vs. Massachusetts, W 15-0 vs. Denver, T 1-1 vs. Adrian, W 5-2 vs. Adrian. | This weekend: Two games vs. Liberty.
- Liberty (12-1-1): W 11-2 vs. Buffalo, W 11-0 vs. Buffalo, W 4-1 vs. Rhode Island, L 3-4 vs. Rhode Island. | This weekend: Two games at Miami.
- Massachusetts (12-4-0): W 4-1 vs. Colorado, L 0-5 vs. Miami, W 10-2 vs. Wisconsin, W 3-0 vs. Vermont, W 5-3 vs. Vermont. | This weekend: Idle.
- Rhode Island (6-3-0): W 3-1 vs. Penn State, L 2-3 vs. Penn State, L 1-4 at Liberty, W 4-3 at Liberty. | This weekend: Two games vs. Navy.
- Michigan (5-3-0): W 9-1 vs. Denver, L 2-5 vs. Colorado State, W 11-1 vs. Colorado. | This weekend: One game vs. Lindenwood-Belleville.
- Grand Valley State (7-1-1): L 1-5 vs. Michigan State, W 4-1 at Ohio State, W 4-1 at Ohio State, W 1-0 at Davenport, W 2-0 vs. Davenport. | This weekend: One game vs. Notre Dame.
- Michigan State (4-0-2): W 5-1 at Grand Valley State, T 0-0 at Adrian. | This weekend: One game at Davenport.
- Davenport (6-4-0): L 0-1 vs. Grand Valley State, L 0-2 at Grand Valley State. | This weekend: One game vs. Michigan State.
- Colorado State (7-1-2): W 4-3 vs. Lindenwood-Belleville, W 2-1 vs. Lindenwood-Belleville, W 5-1 vs. Wisconsin, W 5-2 vs. Michigan, T 1-1 vs. Minnesota. | This weekend: Idle.
- Robert Morris (8-4-0): W 6-0 at Midland, W 6-3 at Midland, W 3-1 vs. Colorado, W 5-1 vs. Colorado. | This weekend: Two games vs. Midland.
- Minnesota (7-1-1): L 2-3 vs. Miami, W 12-1 vs. Colorado, T 1-1 vs. Colorado State, W 10-2 vs. Midland, W 10-2 vs. Midland. | This weekend: Idle.
- Penn State (7-3-0): W 9-0 vs. Navy, L 1-3 at Rhode Island, W 3-2 at Rhode Island, W 15-3 vs. Slippery Rock. | This weekend: Two games at Northeastern.
- Vermont (2-7-1): L 0-3 at Massachusetts, L 3-5 at Massachusetts. | This weekend: Idle.
- Adrian (2-1-2): T 0-0 vs. Michigan State, W 3-1 vs. California (PA), W 4-0 vs. California (PA), T 1-1 at Miami, L 2-5 at Miami. | This weekend: Two games vs. Lindenwood-Belleville
- Colorado (2-11-1): L 1-5 vs. Lindenwood-Belleville, L 2-3 vs. Lindenwood-Belleville, L 1-4 vs. Massachusetts, L 1-12 vs. Minnesota, L 1-11 vs. Michigan, W 3-2 at Wisconsin, T 2-2 at Wisconsin, L 1-3 at Robert Morris, L 1-5 at Robert Morris. | This weekend: Idle.
Classic Barnstorming: This weekend, the Lady Ice Lions will play in one of the most historic arenas anywhere in the world. Northeastern's Matthews Arena (originally called Boston Arena) opened in 1910, making it the oldest indoor hockey arena still used for hockey. It was the original home of both the NHL's Boston Bruins, hosting that team from 1924 through 1928, and the World Hockey Association's New England Whalers (later the NHL's Hartford Whalers/Carolina Hurricanes franchise). It also housed the NBA's Boston Celtics from their inaugural 1946-47 season through 1954-55. In college hockey, the noted NCAA men's programs at Northeastern, Boston University, Boston College, Harvard, Tufts and the Wentworth Institute of Technology also began their lives in the barn.
Nifty Fifty: Saturday's contest marks the 50th in Lady Ice Lions history, dating to the team's founding for the 2012-13 season. Over the first 49 games, Penn State has posted a record of 35-11-3, in addition to accomplishments like the 2013-14 College Hockey East regular season title and back to back ACHA Division 2 championship game appearances in 2013 and 2014. Ashton Schaffer has played in all 49 Lady Ice Lions games (although she will break the string and miss numbers 50 and 51 this weekend), while Devon Fisk has played in 48, Jackie Saideh has been in 47, while Mary Kate Tonetti is next with 46. Tara Soukup and Nina Elia are the other two players who have been on the team's roster since day one, but Elia is studying abroad this semester and is stuck on 39 games as a result. Soukup has 37 games in with the team, missing 12 due to injury.
Name: Northeastern University
Location: Boston, MA
Series History: Tied, 0-0-0. While the Lady Ice Lions are facing Northeastern for the first time this weekend, the former Lady Icers program went 2-5-1 against the Huskies through it's final 2011-12 season.
About Northeastern: NU is the only ECWHL program that has ever won an ACHA national championship - and they have two, including in 2010 at the Division 2 level and in 2012 at the Division 1 level behind tourney MVP Chelsea Dietz in goal. The Huskies' first season in D1 was 2010-11, a year that saw the program's only ECWHL regular season and playoff championships - the latter standing as the first ever not won by Rhode Island, which captured the first seven league tournament crowns.
This year Northeastern has struggled relative to that standard with a 4-7-0 overall mark, including wins over Navy (twice, last weekend) and Division 2 squads Connecticut and New Hampshire. The losses haven't been entirely disastrous though, as NU has managed to stay within two goals of ECWHL frontrunners Massachusetts and URI. Michelle Macchione and Kelsey Hickey lead the way offensively for the Huskies, combining for 40 percent of the team's 25 goals this season. Meanwhile, four of goalie Anne Marie Dion's seven appearances have come against UMass or Rhode Island, but she still carries a 0.912 save percentage and a 2.33 goals against average.
Trivia: While Penn State started as The Farmers' High School of Pennsylvania - the name of the university from 1855 through 1862 - Northeastern has an equally awkward original moniker upon its 1898 founding: the Evening Institute for Younger Men at the Huntington Avenue YMCA. Eighteen years later, after adding several programs (and day classes), it was rechristened as Northeastern College, before switching to Northeastern University in 1922.
Head Coach: Jeff Postera
Goals Scored Per Game: 2.27
Goals Allowed Per Game: 3.45
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