Two of the Golden Knights’ key players, juniors Erica Howe (Ottawa, ONT) and Jamie Lee Rattray (Kanata, ONT) proved to be the difference makers in the Clarkson University Women’s Hockey team’s 1-0 victory over 7th/8th-ranked St. Lawrence University in the season opener for both teams Friday night in Canton.
Clarkson, which is celebrating its 10th season, and the Saints will play another non-conference game at Cheel Arena on Saturday, beginning at 3:00 p.m.
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Howe, who solidified herself as ECAC Hockey’s top goaltender last year, began the 2012-13 campaign with a standout effort for the Knights. The league’s Goaltender of the Year last winter turned aside all 32 St. Lawrence shots to post her 10th career shutout and first ever whitewash over the Saints.
Looking to establish herself as a premier forward in the league, Rattray scored the game’s lone goal just 102 seconds into the contest. Junior captain Carly Mercer (Exeter, ONT) forced a St. Lawrence turnover in the neutral zone, and Rattray did the rest to help the Green and Gold snap a four-game winless (0-3-1) skid against the Saints. Rattray, who participated at Canada’s National Team September/Fall Festival, slipped in a shot past Carmen MacDonald, for her 27th career goal at 1:42 of the first.
St. Lawrence, the defending ECAC Hockey Tournament champions, outshot Clarkson 32-22, but Howe was solid all game as the Knights’ picked up the win on the road against their archrival. Howe posted 10 first-period saves, 12 in the second and 10 more stops over the final 20 minutes. St. Lawrence pulled MacDonald with 1:39 left to play, but Howe and the Knights were able to hold off the Saints.
Clarkson killed off all five St. Lawrence power plays, including three straight in the opening stanza. The Knights went 0-of-1 with the man-advantage.