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Contact: William Sodoma
Date: January 29, 2011
AMHERST, Mass. – Brianne Wheeler once again kept the Colby College women's hockey team in the game with 41 saves against defending national champion Amherst College in a 3-1 setback on Saturday.
Wheeler made 79 saves in the two weekend games to Amherst and allowed six goals (3-2 loss Friday). The Lord Jeffs move to 12-4-2 overall and 10-1-1 in the NESCAC, while Colby falls to 7-12 and 3-9 in the conference.
Amherst struck first six minutes into the first period when first-year Courtney Baranek snapped a shot inside the left post, giving the Jeffs an early 1-0 lead.
The second period began with a fury of Amherst shots and offensive pressure, causing Colby to draw an early penalty. On the ensuing power play, Ellen Swiontkowski had a slap shot from the top of the zone. The rebound deflected straight out to an awaiting Stephanie Clegg, who lifted a wrister over Wheeler's shoulder to extend the Amherst lead to 2-0 2:29 into the period.
Amherst struck again two minutes later when Swiontkowski used her body to redirect a slap shot from senior teammate Randi Zukas. The puck appeared to deflect off Swiontkowski's hip and went through the legs of the Colby goalie, giving Amherst a 3-0 advantage.
For the second time in as many days Colby refused to go down without a fight. The Mules cut the deficit to 3-1 with eight minutes left in the final period when first-year Samantha Slotnick gathered a rebound in front of the Amherst net and lifted the puck over Kerri Stuart's outstretched leg and into the back of the net.
The pressure increased late in the third when Colby pulled its goalie for an extra skater, but Stuart turned a last-second shot wide to secure the 3-1 victory. Stuart (2-0) finished the day with 16 saves for the Jeffs.
Amherst 3, Colby 1
A: Courtney Baranek, 6:32
A: Stephanie Clegg (Ellen Swiontkowski, Emily Vitale), 2:29
A: Ellen Swiontkowski (Randi Zukas, Kaitlyn McInnis), 4:38
C: Samantha Slotnick (Marissa Simmons, Stephanie Scarpato), 11:46
Shots: Colby 17, Amherst 44. Power play: Colby 0-2, Amherst 1-4. Goalies: Brianne Wheeler (Colby, 59:10, 3 GA, 41 saves); Kerri Stuart (Amherst, 60:00, 1 GA, 16 saves).