Syracuse ice hockey continues to struggle in home opener loss to St. Lawrence
Syracuse ice hockey loses in home opener to St. Lawrence
With just a few minutes remaining in the final period of the game, Syracuse went on the attack down 1-0. As the clock struck one minute, the Orange pulled goaltender Arielle DeSmet and brought a sixth skater onto the ice.
After a few good scoring chances, St. Lawrence forward Anna Segedi managed to grab hold of the puck and rifled a shot from the neutral zone towards the empty net. As the puck slid into the net, the Orange’s chance to salvage something from the game slipped out of their grasp, and they took a 2-0 loss in a hard fought battle.
The first period was not Syracuse’s best showing. An Orange scoring chance was a rare sight to see. St. Lawrence, on the other hand, got off to a fast start as soon as the puck dropped. After winning the opening face off, Segedi immediately got a shot off from just inside the blue line. It took a quick reaction from DeSmet to keep the game scoreless early on.
But St. Lawrence would not be denied. The Saints were rewarded for their persistence six minutes into the game in a rapid sequence of events. Saints defender Katina Duscio launched a shot that bounced off the boards just behind DeSmet. St. Lawrence forward Shailyn Snow sent the rebounded puck into the slot where it was received by defender Kiley Mastel, who tucked it into the net to put St. Lawrence a goal ahead.
When the puck dropped to open up the second period of play, Syracuse’s offense looked like it had been rejuvenated back to life. With 3:30 on the clock, Orange forward Madison Primeau outmaneuvered her defender and got a shot off in front of the St. Lawrence net, but it was blocked by goaltender Lucy Morgan.
A long awaited moment arrived with seven minutes played in the period, as DeSmet notched her 1500th career save, making her one of five Syracuse goalies to have reached this milestone. DeSmit was the shining star for Syracuse on an otherwise dreary night, tallying 43 saves in the game.
“Arielle just brings a calmness to our system,” Syracuse head coach Britni Smith said. “Knowing that we have her back there is very helpful.”
This marks Smith’s first time coaching the Syracuse squad at home as well as her first home loss in the season.
Syracuse and St. Lawrence went back and forth for the rest of the game up until the final empty net goal, which sealed the victory for the Saints. Syracuse was outshot 45-13 in the game, a remarkable differential for a team with such good defensive talent.
Thankfully for Syracuse, DeSmet’s milestone night in goal kept the Orange within reach for most of the game.
“It’s always crazy to hit a new milestone, but this one was really exciting,” DeSmet said. “It really boosts the confidence to hear something like that during the game.”
The Orange will look to get revenge in their 3 p.m. Saturday matchup against St. Lawrence at Appleton Arena.
“I’m definitely not hitting the panic button. We’ve got some work to do. It’s early in the season,” Coach Smith said. “We’ll be back on the ice tomorrow and we’re going to get things figured out for Saturday.”