Big Green Women's Hockey Racks up Ninth Straight Win
The top-ranked Dartmouth women's hockey team has played with a bull's-eye on its back all season long. The problem for opponents is that they keep missing the target.
The Big Green improved to 19-1-1 overall with a 5-3 victory at Wisconsin on February 10. Dartmouth has won nine straight games after suffering its lone setback of the season back on January 5.
The Big Green's balanced offensive attack shows 10 players with 10 or more points and five players with 20 or more points.
"This team is as well balanced both offensively and defensively as any team we have ever had," head coach Judy Oberting said. "We may not be a team full of superstars, but we have enviable talent in all positions. We have talked about depth all year, and that depth has been tested in the past few weeks."
Junior Correne Bredin (Warburg, Alta.) missed games due to a commitment with the Canadian National team, and a number of injuries hit key players, including sophomore Carly Haggard (Port Alberni, B.C.) and senior Jennifer Wiehn (Tolland, Conn.).
Despite that, the Big Green continues to use its depth to win games. Against Wisconsin, junior Kristin King (Piqua, Ohio) moved up to the top line and scored her first hat trick of the season.
Senior Carrie Sekela (Mississauga, Ont.) has also stepped up her play, contributing a pair of assists in the most recent win.
"We managed to win all five games when we were shorthanded," Oberting said. "Can we keep it up with a thinner roster? Who knows, but we will certainly try."
Kim McCullough (Toronto, Ont.), who is two points shy of setting a personal best, leads the team with 30 points (12g, 18a). Haggard and King are tied for second with 27 points - Haggard has a team-leading 15 goals while King has scored 12 times.
Sekela and Bredin round out the top five scorers with 23 and 21 points, respectively. Bredin recorded her 99th career point at Wisconsin.
Dartmouth has outscored its opponents, 104-38, this season, and much of the credit can go to goaltenders Meaghan Cahill (West Hartford, Conn.) and Amy Ferguson (Pictou, N.S.).
Cahill leads the ECAC with a 1.23 goals against average and is second with a .941 save percentage. She also has a 9-1-1 slate and is tied for the school record with 51 career victories.
Ferguson, meanwhile, has a sparkling 10-0-0 record and a 2.39 goals against average.
"Our team is not a team of superstars," senior co-captain Kristina Guarino (White River Junction, Vt.) said. "Everyone has their role and is expected to perform it to their greatest potential day in and day out. We have experienced a great deal of success this season because we have relied on one another to get the job done."
With six games remaining in the regular season - the Big Green clinched an ECAC playoff on February 3 - there aren't many chances left for opponents to shoot for the bull's-eye. (Bill Garfield)