Thanks to the impressive depth of this season’s roster, the women’s ice hockey team fought back from a tie with Williams last Friday to beat the Ephs handily the next day. This kept Bowdoin tenuously atop the NESCAC standings.

After tying the Ephs in the first game, the second game was a blowout, with five different players scoring. After the first tie, a loss against the Ephs would have cost the Polar Bears (13-2-2, 7-1-1 NESCAC) their first-place rank. 

In the first game, Rachel Kennedy ’16 scored the first goal just a few minutes into the opening period, for her 11th net of the season.

Despite maintaining a significant amount of pressure in the Williams defensive zone, Bowdoin was unable to conjure up another goal in the rest of the period.

In the second, Williams played with renewed vigor, aggressively challenging Bowdoin by spending the majority of time in the Polar Bear defensive zone. Williams then scored to tie the game.

Even with multiple power plays in the third period and in overtime, Bowdoin was unable to break the deadlock. In overtime, the players tried to score quickly, in order to avoid giving any valuable points to Williams.

Head coach Marissa O’Neil was content with the power play, though said she wished for some better luck. 

“In the third period, we got some good looks but we were making it more difficult for ourselves,” she said. “We were not connecting. Midway through the second power play, we were getting some nice chances but the goalie was making some plays. In overtime, the power play was a lot of pucks bouncing through the crease and we couldn’t put it in. We battled for 60 minutes but we just didn’t earn the breaks.”

However, O’Neil’s opinion is that the sense of urgency amongst the players may have done more harm than good.

“We like to keep things simple, but we were trying to do too much,” O’Neil added. “Williams did a nice job defensively; they knew about our offense so they forced us to move the puck around a lot, challenging us to be creative to find lanes without holding onto the puck for too long. We were never down that game but we kept trying to play catchup. We were going for the home run play instead of just establishing tempo.”

The second matchup had a nearly identical start, with Bowdoin quickly opening the scoring. Chelsea MacNeil ’15 scored an unassisted goal to open up the floodgates for the rest of her team.
Captain Stephanie Ludy ’13 followed with her own goal a few minutes later, her ninth of the season.

Kenzie Novak ’13 scored the third goal of the period with a low shot from the left face-off circle, her second of the season.

In the second period, a Bowdoin penalty for body checking left them down a player but Holtz was able to score a short-handed goal to knock Williams on its heels.

“We have great depth on our team, the pace we played at on Friday created some fatigue [on Williams] that you could notice the next day. It was tough for Williams to bounce back and once Kayte scored the shorthanded goal in the second, that was the nail in the coffin,” O’Neil said.

Just half a minute into the third, Kennedy found the back of the net again for her team high 12th goal, also her fifth consecutive game with a score.

With that kind of performance, O’Neil believes that Kennedy has a strong chance at winning the NESCAC Rookie of the Year award.

“She is absolutely in a position to win it,” O’Neil said. “She is a competitor and she competes her butt off. Every single shift, she goes out with purpose and makes something happen. She is a great athlete and great recruit. She has a lot of points and knows how to finish a scoring opportunity and even when she does not score, she helps create situations for other players to score.”