|Adrian's Jessie Rushing (left) and Kelly Watson are set to renew acquaintances|
Penn State (2-5-0/2-5-0 ECWHL) at
No. 4 Adrian (6-0-0/6-0-0 CCWHA)
Friday, November 4th at 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, November 5th at 3:00 p.m.
Arrington Ice Arena
The Lady Ice Lions leave ECWHL play for the first time this season and look for an impressive result
Victor Trask: One major highlight from Penn State's series at Rhode Island last weekend was the first collegiate goal of freshman Katelyn Trask, a Coventry, RI native who was able to get the memorable tally against several former teammates and with her family in attendance. While the list of players who scored their first collegiate goal with the Lady Ice Lions in their home state is not a short one (Riley O'Connor, Cassie Dunne, Lucy Yeatman, Tarika Embar, Emma Embar, Devon Fisk, Tara Soukup and Kim Badorrek are all on it), Trask is the first non-Pennsylvanian to accomplish the feat. She joins Fisk (who tallied at California (PA) in the first game of the WIHC era) and Soukup (at West Chester later in 2012-13) as the only players to grab their first goal in their home state during an away game.
Voter Fraud: Last weekend's losses to Rhode Island resulted in a bit of negative history, as the team, which had received votes in each ACHA ranking so far this season, did not in the most recent version issued on Tuesday. Prior to Ranking 4 of 2015-16, Penn State had only been unranked once in the combined history of the WIHC and Lady Icers, Ranking 3 of 2007-08. While a list of unranked teams receiving votes was not released in 2007-08 as it is now, that era did include a regional ranking in addition to the national ranking, with those Lady Icers placing sixth in the East Region. Therefore, this week marked the first time ever that a PSU team did not receive a single ranking vote. For the team's part, scheduled games lie ahead with no fewer than six of the ACHA's current top ten (including, obviously, No. 4 Adrian this weekend), presenting a clear opportunity to correct the situation.
Miller Time: On a more positive note, sophomore Meghan Miller joined fellow Rhode Islander Trask in scoring a goal last weekend against the Rams. The goal, Miller's second this year, gave her the team scoring lead, with three total points. It was also the sixth goal of her career, making her Penn State's fourth-most-prolific finisher since the beginning of 2015-16, trailing only Darby Kern, O'Connor and Caitlin Costello). Miller has been particularly effective on the power play, as three of her goals have come on the advantage while a fourth - the one last weekend - was essentially one as well, as it was scored just two seconds after a URI penalty expired.
Missing Michigan: Although a national-high five of ACHA Division 1's 23 current teams are located in Michigan, Penn State has a very light history with the Great Lakes state. The third and fourth games of the WIHC era involved visiting Michigan State's Division 2 team in 2012, but last year's voyage to Adrian is the only other time the present team has graced the mitten. The Lady Ice Lions, of course, will be back in Michigan in January to play both Michigan and Michigan State, marking the first time any PSU team has been to the state twice in one season since the 2002-03 Lady Icers played the Wolverines in a regular season series in February, then returned the next month for the ACHA National Tournament. The team's history with Michigan-native players isn't much different: current senior Darian Dempsey (Grosse Pointe Farms) and 2015 graduates Katie Murphy (Novi) and Madison Smiddy (Grand Rapids) are the only Michiganders to play ACHA women's hockey at Penn State since Bianca George (Ann Arbor) skated for the Lady Icers in 2003-04.
Name: Adrian College
Location: Adrian, MI
Series History: Adrian leads, 4-0-0. The entire series history was played during the 2015-16 season, with the Bulldogs taking four decisive wins, two at each team's rink. Costello scored the only Penn State goal against AC last year, while Aimee Little played all four games in the PSU crease and made 160 saves.
About Adrian: The Bulldogs have quickly become one of the ACHA's best teams, as the program is only in its fifth season but already has three ACHA national tournament appearances (2014, 2015, 2016), with the most recent two winding up in the semifinals. The obvious next step is winning a first trophy - either for a conference or a national title - and with a top-five ranking and a 6-0-0 record including sweeps of Grand Valley State, Davenport and Michigan, they're off to a good start in that regard this year. Rookie Brittany Levassuer has four goals (all against the Wolverines last weekend), but largely it's been a familiar cast of characters doing Adrian's work. ACHA all-tournament picks Jessie Rushing and Jess Fabbro are back, as is top goalie Alison Dungey (who has allowed just three goals in five games) along with Kaillie Hardy, Nicole Paradis and Alicia Tait (the top three Bulldog scorers last year) and head coach Brett Berger, who has been named to the Team USA staff for the World University Games tournament coming up in February.
Trivia: Although Penn State and a few other schools (including Northeastern, Vermont, Minnesota and Wisconsin) have both an NCAA Division I and an ACHA Division 1 women's team, Adrian is the only school represented in both NCAA Division III and ACHA Division 1. AC's NCAA team has been a boon to the ACHA team, with several former varsity players like Nichole Laflamme, Amanda Antos and Emily Michelin ending their college careers with the club team over the years.
Head Coach: Brett Berger
Goals Scored Per Game: 3.17
Goals Allowed Per Game: 0.50
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