Lady Spartans fall to Cadets 5-2

Castleton women’s hockey hosted Norwich University, the B-Division leader in the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference, on February 3rd. The Spartans fell 5-2 despite a great effort from sophomore goalie, Amanda Hoy, who had 20 saves.Norwich drew first blood mid-way through the first period on a power play goal by Caitie Banfield. The Spartans answered with a power play goal of their own when sophomore forward Amy Costa scored her fifth goal of the season with assists from Sterling Nelson and Kaitlin Hayes. Amanda Wilks gave Norwich the lead once again with under three minutes to play in the period. They carried the lead into the first intermission.

The Spartans came out flying in the second period and scored the equalizer 2:05 in, taking advantage of a Sophie Leclerc penalty. It was Paige O’Neil’s first goal of the season with assists from Hayes and Adrianna Riggio.

“They were extremely motivated for the game and ready to play,” Castleton coach Bethany Torrice said.

“Everyone had the heart and a positive attitude, and when we all came together as a team it boosted our confidence,” said Spartan sophomore defenseman Courtney Leavitt. “We definitely had enough conversations as a team to get us motivated to put everything we had into it.”

The second period was all about neutral zone battles for both teams. The tide turned Norwich’s way when Sarah Scardino slapped home her own rebound to put her team up 3-2. With under a minute left, Norwich tacked onto its lead when Julie Fortier danced around the defense and deaked Hoy to finish the play with yet another Norwich power play goal.

The third period saw four Castleton penalties to two Norwich penalties.

“I was not happy with the refs,” said Torrice. “Norwich is a physical team and [nothing] was called on them.”

Leavitt agreed, but didn’t hold the referees responsible.

“Unfortunately, we can’t control what the refs called; we can only control our game,” Leavitt said.

Leclerc would add another power play goal for Norwich with less than ten minutes remaining in the contest.

“[Castleton is] definitely growing as a program,” said Norwich forward Danielle DelDotto, “They work hard and never give you an easy game.

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