Norwich Men and Women Advance to NEHC Finals

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NORTHFIELD, Vt. The Norwich University men’s ice hockey team recorded its eighth straight shutout victory with a 5-0 win over No. 7 seed Univ. of Southern Maine in the New England Hockey Conference (NEHC) Semifinals on Saturday night at Kreitzberg Arena.

Senior goalie Tom Aubrun (Chamonix, France) stopped all 17 shots he faced to pick up his eighth straight shutout, 12th of the season and also extend his consecutive shutout minutes streak to 512:31, which is a record for all NCAA levels.

Senior forward Christian Thompson (Windham, N.H.) and freshman forward Braedyn Aubin (Woodstock, Ontario) each had a goal and an assist to lead the Cadets’ offense in the victory. Sophomore defenseman Gabriel Chicoine (St. Dominique, Quebec) notched two assists to extend his point streak to seven straight games. Junior forward Felix Brassard (St. Jean-sur-Richelieu, Quebec) added two assists as well.

Norwich stretched its unbeaten streak to 17 straight games with the victory and will now face No. 3 seed and No. 5 nationally-ranked Hobart College for the third straight year in the NEHC Championship game. Hobart defeated New England College 4-2. Norwich won last year’s NEHC title game 2-1, while the Statesmen took the 2018 title game 3-0 in Kreitzberg Arena.

After a tight-checking and even first 15 minutes, Norwich (23-2-2) opened the scoring with a power play goal from junior forward Coby Downs (Montclair, Calif.) to take a lead that it would never relinquish.

Downs sent a wrist shot through traffic that bounced off a body in front and into the back of the net for his 10th goal of the season. Chicoine and Brassard picked up assists on the goal.

Aubin scored with 30 seconds left in the opening period, beating USM goalie Paul Leger with wrist shot from the left wing off assists from Thompson and Noah Williams (Cortland, N.Y.).

Thompson increased the lead to 3-0 with his third goal of the season off assists from Aubin and Matt Burchill (Marshfield, Mass.).

Hall scored for the fifth straight game off assists from Chicoine and Burchill at the 2:40 mark of the third period to stretch the lead to 4-0.

Philip Elgstam (Stockholm, Sweden) capped the scoring with a power play goal, shoveling in a rebound off the end boards glass after Ryan Boucher’s (Fitchburg, Mass.) attempt sailed high and wide. Brassard picked up the secondary assist.

Norwich outshot Southern Maine 41-17 in the game. Leger made 36 saves in his final collegiate start for the Huskies.

Norwich will be looking to win its 14th NEHC Tournament title next Saturday, while Hobart will be looking for its second since joining the league for the 2017-18 season.

The Norwich University women's ice hockey team continued its playoff offensive explosion with a 10-0 victory over No. 7 seed Plymouth State on Saturday afternoon at Kreitzberg Arena in the New England Hockey Conference (NEHC) Semifinals.

Sophomore forward Carley Sedlar (Howell, Mich.) had a six-point night to lead Norwich (21-4-2) to its 12th straight NEHC Championship game appearance. The Cadets will host Suffolk on Saturday, March 7 at 3 p.m. as they look to win their 10th NEHC Tournament title and secure an automatic bid into the NCAA Tournament.

Suffolk defeated Southern Maine 2-1 to continue its Cinderella NEHC Tournament run as the No. 6 seed.

Sedlar scored a goal and tied the Norwich single-game record with five assists to pace the Norwich offense in the victory. Senior forwards Amanda Conway (Methuen, Mass.) and Sophie McGovern (Hermantown, Minn.) tallied two goals apiece, while freshman Julia Masotta (Tewksbury, Mass.) notched four assists to round out the offensive leaders.

Sophomore goalie Alexa Berg (West Fargo, N.D.) pitched her second straight playoff shutout, stopping all 14 shots she faced for her seventh shutout of the season.

Sophomore defenseman Morgan Tefft (Redwood City, Calif.) opened the scoring at the 4:27 mark of the first period with her first goal of the season to give the Cadets the only lead they would need.

Tefft crashed for a rebound goal on the right side of the net after Olivia Petito made the initial save on Sedlar. Ann-Frederique Guay (St. Lambert-de-Lauzon, Quebec) picked up her first of three assists on the game with the secondary assist.

Conway scored her first of the game and her 27th of the season on a breakaway at the 6:36 mark of the first period to make it 2-0 Norwich. Masotta blocked a shot from the point by a Plymouth State defender and then the puck trickled over to McGovern, who backhanded it out of the zone and sent Conway in all alone. Conway took care of the rest, beating Petito low on the ice on her back hand for the goal.

McGovern made it 3-0 at the 13:21 mark of the first period, tipping a backhand shot by Conway into the back of the net for her 17th goal of the season. Masotta picked up the second assist.

Conway scored just six seconds into the second period with a tremendous individual effort for her 28th goal of the season. She scooped up the puck after Masotta won the faceoff forward and slipped through three Plymouth State defenders before roofing a shot just under the crossbar to make it 4-0 Norwich.

McGovern increased the lead to 5-0 with a redirection goal from the doorstep of the crease to beat Petito five-hole off assists from Conway and Masotta. McGovern's second goal of the game chased Petito from the net and Becca Bridge came on in relief for Plymouth State.

The Cadets added three more second-period goals on Bridge with Kelley Madden (Novelty, Ohio), Guay and Samantha Benoit (Bow, N.H.) all finding the back of the net.

Sedlar and Ingrid Holstad-Berge (Stavanger, Norway) added third-period goals to cap the scoring in the game.

Norwich had 11 different skaters get on the scoresheet in the victory as the Cadets extended their unbeaten streak to 12 straight games.

Norwich outshot Plymouth State 61-14.

The Cadets will be looking to win their fourth straight NEHC Tournament title on Saturday.

Courtesy: Norwich Athletics