Update Jan. 28, 12:03 a.m.: At the time of publication, the women's ice hockey team had a 13-2-1 record, which was mistakenly written as 14-1. From Dec. 29 to Jan. 19, the team played 10 games, not 15, winning nine games, not 14, in a row before losing the last match of winter break to Middlebury. The online article has been updated to reflect these corrections. 

After playing 15 10 games and traveling thousands of miles, the women’s ice hockey team is ranked No. 6 in the nation. Stephanie Ludy ’13 and Rachel Kennedy ’16 have been honored as NESCAC Players of the Week, and Bowdoin is sitting in first place in the NESCAC.

The team traveled to the Midwest to begin its winter break and had success, winning 14 9 games in a row and clinching a spot in the NESCAC playoffs. 
“Our strength of schedule is ranked third toughest in the country and that is going to help us,” Head Coach Marrissa O’Neil said about the team’s playoff chances. “Those wins certainly help us in getting a bid to Nationals. To play a team in every single D-III conference and beat a team  from every one is a good achievement for us.”

O’Neil says she was thrilled with the trip and how the team responded to playing unknown teams despite some players being sick. 

“The experience was great,” O’Neil said. “Traveling with the team is always a great bonding experience. Unfortunately, a few kids got sick with a stomach bug but we stuck it out. We got an early lead and just held on. It was just mind over matter at that point.”
In Bowdoin’s second matchup against Concordia, there was dramatic back and forth between both teams that led to an exciting overtime finish for Bowdoin on the back of a last second goal from captain Kayte Holtz ’13.  

Not only did Holtz score the game-winning goal, she also joined Bowdoin’s career 100-point club, a highly respected milestone amongst hockey players. 

Holtz is the tenth player in the history of the program to reach this mark and the first player to join the group’s ranks since 2007.

Looking back on the winter trip, O’Neil was pleased with the way the Polar Bears handled their tough Midwestern opponents.

O’Neil said Concordia was  “an NCAA tournament team last year but they have not done well so far this year. Offensively, they were better than we expected. They had some kids who could rip the puck. It was very physical which is fine because our kids can play that. That kind of play helps prepare us in case we meet up with them or other Midwestern teams in postseason play.”
Returning to Brunswick, the Polar Bears then hosted Conneticut College. Bowdoin swept the Camels, winning 4-0 in the first game and 3-0 in the second contest. 

In their first matchup, Chelsea MacNeil ’15 tallied a hat trick while Schuyler Nardelli ’15 scored the team’s fourth goal. Kim Tess-Wanat ’13 had three assists, Maura Allen ’14 had two and Holtz had one. 

In the second game, Holtz and MacNeil found the back of the net again while Colleen Finnerty ’15 also added a goal. Tess-Wanat had two assists and Emily Tang ’14, Kenzie Novak ’13, and Kennedy had one each. 

The team then had a 4-game road trip comprised of two non-conference matches and a NESCAC 2-game series against Wesleyan. 

Just prior to the start of the spring semester, Bowdoin hosted Middlebury for a 2- game series. 
Bowdoin won the first game 3-0, scoring one goal each period and handing Middlebury its only shutout loss of the season. 

Kennedy scored the first goal of the game in the opening period. In the second Tess-Wanat drove the puck home off of a Holtz pass to double the score, making it 2-0. 

In the final frame, MacNeil won a faceoff and passed to Holtz, who drilled it into the net to make the score 3-0.

In the second of Bowdoin’s matchups against the Panthers, Middlebury came out the gate playing aggressively, keeping the two teams in a deadlock through the first period. 

Middlebury struck first in the middle period, taking advantage of some efficient passing that spread the Bowdoin defense. The Panthers scored their second goal moments after their first. 
Kennedy cut into the Middlebury lead, knocking home a rebound before the end of the second period. 

Bowdoin promptly tied the game one minute into the third period. However, Middlebury rallied, notching two more goals for a 4-2 win. 

After a week of rest, Bowdoin headed to Williams for a two-game series on Friday and Saturday. In the first game, all signs pointed to a one-sided victory after the Kennedy scored less than four minutes into the game, but Williams played stout defense to keep Bowdoin out of the net. After Williams scored two minutes into the second period, the two teams were unable to score for the next 43 minutes, including overtime. 

On Saturday, the Polar Bears hit the ice much as they had the day before, with MacNeil scoring an unassisted shot less than three minutes into the game. But rather than be held back by the Williams defense, Bowdoin added two more goals within five minutes to make the score 3-0. Holtz and Kennedy scored in the second and third periods, respectively, to put the match out of reach at 5-0. 

Update Jan. 28, 12:24 a.m.: Added information about Bowdoin's series at Williams on Jan. 25 and 26.