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Falcons beat Superior, even up series

December 4, 2009

The UW-River Falls women’s hockey team evened up its two game series against NCHA opponent UW-Superior at Hunt Arena with a 4-2 win on Nov. 21.

The game was played on a Saturday afternoon, with a 2 p.m. puck drop time and 200 people in attendance. After losing the previous Friday game against the Yellowjackets, 3-2, the win on Saturday evened up the two-game series.

UW-Stout started the scoring in the game when Teagan Cassan put one past Falcon Goaltender Melissa Deardorff for her second goal of the season.

The Falcons tied the game up late in the first period, with a goal by Jamie Briski, her fourth goal on the season. The goal was assisted by Alyssa Jackson and Kayleigh Bell.

The Falcons took the lead in the second period, with a goal by Brittany Erickson, which was also her first on the season. The assists on the goal were given to Heather Horgen and Lauren Conrad.

A scary injury to Falcon Amanda Ryder also occurred late in the second period. Play was stopped with thirteen seconds left in the second period after Ryder was injured during a Superior shot on goal while in the Falcon’s zone on the power play.

Ryder was carried off on a stretcher, and the third period was finished after the resurfacing of the ice.

Head Coach Joe Cranston said the injury was to the player’s back, but she was able to move her fingers and toes. The Yellowjackets tied the game up in the middle of the third period, with a goal by Jessica Tyra, her second on the season.

The Falcons answered back less than two minutes later with a goal by Ashly Berner. Conrad and Bell also assisted the goahead goal.

The Falcons finished off the game with an empty net goal by Conrad, her third goal on the season. The goal was also Conrad’s third point in the game. The empty net was a result in the Yellowjackets pulling their goalie to have six skaters on the ice.

Despite winning the game 4-2, the Falcons only out-shot the Yellowjackets by two shots, 22-20.

Cranston said that although his team played well enough to win, he felt they performed better in the Friday game. Part of the reason, he said, was the loss of key players due to injury.

“I think we probably played better in the first game and lost,” he said. “We played good enough to win, and it was tough without Katie Flanagan in the lineup, our leading scorer.”

Some players also said they felt that they had to work hard to get the win in the game.

“We came out a little slow to start off and got scored on,” Conrad said. “But we never gave up and worked hard as a team to pull off the win.”

The win was important to the team, with Superior being one of the better teams in the NCHA conference.

“If we would have lost we would have been behind points in our conference right off the bat,” Deardorff said. “That isn’t how we wanted to start the season.”

Cranston said he agreed that the win for their place was important for the Falcons in the NCHA standings.

“It’s our first two points, and if Superior would have swept us, they would have been in the driver’s seat a lot more than we would,” he said.

The Falcons continue NCHA play Saturday and Sunday, at Adrian College.