Q30 Sports: NCAA women’s ice hockey semifinals recap

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Mark Spillane

High Point Solutions arena in Hamden, Conn. hosted the two semifinal games of the 2014 NCAA Women’s Frozen Four on Saturday March 21.

The first match up was between number one ranked Minnesota and fourth ranked Wisconsin. Minnesota was looking to make it to their third consecutive national championship game, while Wisconsin was looking to advance to the championship round for the second time in three years.

The defense was strong for both teams throughout most of the first period until Wisconsin broke through with a goal by Brittany Ammerman to put Wisconsin up one to zero with less then two minutes left.

The lead did not last long as Minnesota even it up early in the second period with a goal by Terry Kelly. Minnesota a few minutes later took the lead on a power play goal by Maryanne Menefee. Later on in the period Wisconsin regained the lead scoring two goals in the last five minutes of the second period, the first coming from Katy Josephs and the second coming from Karley Sylvester.

The Badgers took the three to two lead into the third period but could not hold on, as it was all Minnesota. Starting it off it was the nation’s leading scorer, Hannah Brandt scoring a power play goal to tie the game at three goals apiece.

Soon after, it was Rachel Bona scoring a goal to give Minnesota the four to three lead. Late in the game Minnesota put the dagger on Wisconsin with a goal from Baylee Gillanders to give Minnesota a five to three victory over Wisconsin sending them to their third consecutive national championship game appearance.

The second game in the Frozen Four featured Mercyhurst and Clarkson. Both teams looked for the first national championship game appearance in either school’s history. Mercyhurst got on the board first with a goal by Jaclyn Arbour in the first period to take a one to zero lead.

However, Clarkson would take control for the rest of the game. In the second period, Renata Fast would score a goal to tie the game. Soon after Clarkson would score another goal. This one coming from Vanessa Gagnon and assisted by Patty Kazmyer winner Jamie Lee Rattray, one of two assists she had in the game.

Clarkson would go on to score there more goals to win by a final score of five to one, advancing to the national championship game against Minnesota, Sunday, March 23rd at 3 p.m. at the TD Bank Sports Center.