Potsdam, NY – Senior Jamie Lee Rattray's (Kanata, ONT) hat trick powered the 6th-ranked Clarkson University Women's Hockey team by the Colgate University Raiders 5-2 on Friday evening at Cheel Arena.
The win improves the Golden Knights to 18-4-3 (9-2-2 ECAC Hockey) while the loss drops the Raiders to 5-18-2 (2-11-0 ECAC Hockey). Clarkson remains three points behind leader Harvard and will host 3rd/4th-ranked Cornell University tomorrow afternoon at 4:00 pm at Cheel Arena in the only Top 10 matchup of the weekend.
"I think we can take a lot of good things from tonight's game, but there were also a few minor areas we will need to clean up going into tomorrow's game against Cornell," stated Clarkson co-head coach Matt Desrosiers. "It was tough for our players to get into a rhythm tonight with all the penalties but it was a good challenge for us to have to battle through that mentally and maintain our focus. I really liked how hard we came out of the gates to build an early lead and gain the momentum right from the first puck drop. It was also great to see Jamie Lee have such a strong game to break the record for most careers goals. I'm glad she was able to do it at home in front of her family and our fans.
The Knights wasted no time getting on the scoreboard, as senior Vanessa Gagnon (St. Constant, QUE) scored at the 2:49 mark in the first period. Clarkson had multiple shots before senior Brittany Styner (Calgary, ALB) collected the puck behind the net and found Gagnon in front of the net, who beat Colgate goaltender Brittney Brooks for her ninth goal of the season.
With Clarkson down a man and trying to kill a Colgate power-play opportunity, Rattray took the puck at center ice and skated down the left side of the ice before beating a defender and Brooks for the unassisted goal to put the Knights up 2-0. The goal is her 20th of the season and 68th of her career, making her the all-time leading goal scored in Clarkson history.
The Green and Gold would strike again at the 9:50 mark as sophomore Erin Ambrose (Keswick, ONT) passed to Rattray from the blue line. Rattray would find senior captain Carly Mercer (Exeter, ONT) skating toward the net and she would blast a wrist shot by Brooks to put Clarkson up 3-0 and end Brooks' night early.
Clarkson dominated the first period of play from start to finish, outshooting Colgate 16-5 and killing both power-play opportunities for the Raiders.
Finding themselves on the wrong end of a 5-on-3, the Knights gave up their first power-play goal in the last 39 chances, as Taylor Volpe took passes from Megan Wickens and Nicole Gass at the 1:06 mark and beat senior goaltender Erica Howe (Ottawa, ONT) to cut the Clarkson lead to 3-1.
Rattray attempted to return the favor minutes later as the Knights found themselves on the power-play, but her shot from just to the right of the goal slammed off the post and sailed high of the net.
Now on the right side of a 5-on-3 advantage, Clarkson would strike for the fourth time as Rattray blasted a shot by goaltender Susan Allen with help from Carly Mercer and Ambrose for her second goal of the game to put Clarkson up 4-1 midway through the second period.
The Knights outshot the Raiders 10-3 in a penalty-filled second period, as players were sent to the box seven times between the two teams.
Colgate would cut the lead to two at the 3:13 mark in the third period when Rachel Walsh won a faceoff and found Wickens behind the Raiders' net. Wickens then found Jocelyn Simpson, who skated down the right side of the ice and beat Howe to make the score 4-2.
The Knights put the game away with a power-play goal at the 18:31 mark as Rattray took a pass from Ambrose and beat Allen to put Clarkson up 5-2.
The Knights are now unbeaten in seven straight games, going 6-0-1 in that span. The two teams combined for 19 penalties on the evening and Clarkson was 2-9 on the power-play and 6-7 on the penalty kill. The Knights outshot the Raiders 39-13 in the game and Howe recorded 11 saves to pick up the victory.