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Women's Hockey Upsets No. 10 Providence, 5-3

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (February 12, 2005) – Senior Angie Wallace (Mullett Lake, Mich.) scored two goals and the top line of Shannon Connolly, Jaclyn Hawkins and Tiffany Owens combined for five points (2g, 3a) as the University of Connecticut women’s hockey team upset No. 10 Providence College by a score of 5-3 at Schneider Arena on the PC campus on Saturday afternoon.

The win is the first against Providence in the four-plus seasons UConn has been a Division I team. The victory also marks the first Husky defeat of a ranked opponent this season. It is only the second home game the Friars have lost all season, and only their second defeat this year at the hands of a Hockey East opponent. Connecticut is now 10-11-6 overall, 6-5-2 in Hockey East games. Providence is 15-8-4, 10-2-1 vs. conference foes.

The first period opened with four goals, with the Huskies scoring two on just four shots. Providence got an early 1-0 lead on a goal by Sonny Watrous. On a Friar charge, Karen Thatcher fired a shot on goal, saved by junior goaltender Kaitlyn Shain (Calgary, Alberta). Watrous flicked the puck into an open net with Shain still down from the previous save to put the Friars up one goal just 2:16 into the game.

The Huskies answered back when junior defenseman Alicia Ramolla (Barrie, Ontario) rifled a shot from the top of the circle through traffic. Wallace redirected the puck and tucked it just into the corner of the goal to knot the game at 1-1 at 9:06. The goal was Wallace’s sixth of the season, with Ramolla collecting her fifth helper.

UConn then took the lead at 11:20. Senior Shannon Connolly (Baldwinsville, N.Y.) shot a one-timer while skating in front of the Friar goal, beating goaltender Amy Thomas, to move to score to 2-1. The power play goal was the sixth for Connolly this season, while freshman Jaclyn Hawkins (Manotick, Ontario) registered her 10th assist on the score.

The Husky lead was brief as Providence answered back just 3:11 later to tie the game at 2-2. UConn had just killed off a minute-long 5-on-3, but the Friars were able to capitalize on the remaining power play as Rush Zimmerman tallied a goal at 14:31. Watrous picked up her second point of the game with an assist on the score, along with Kristin Gigliotti.

The two teams entered the first intermission with the score tied at 2-2. Providence out-shot UConn 10-4 in the first period.

Connecticut regained the lead in the second period at 7:32 while on the power play. Connolly shot the puck on goal, with Thomas making a sprawling save. Hawkins then picked up the rebound and lifted the puck into an open net to give the Huskies a 3-2 lead. The goal extended Hawkins team-leading total to 17 and Connolly tallied her 12th assist of the year.

Shain stood on her head during the second period, stopping all 11 of Providence’s shots to maintain the UConn lead. After two periods, the Friars held a 21-12 advantage in shots on goal.

The back-and-forth battle continued in the third period as the Friars scored 6:27 into the period to tie the score once again. Watrous scored her second goal of the game on the power play, beating Shain stick-side to move the score to 3-3.

The Huskies answered with a power play goal of their own, their third of the day, at 11:27 when senior Megan McLeod (Livonia, Mich.) found the back of the net on a slap shot just over the blue line. Ramolla notched her second assist of the game on what ended up being the game-winning goal as McLeod registered her fifth lamplighter of the year.

With 1:45 remaining, Providence pulled their goaltender for an extra attacker. Shain and the UConn defense quashed the Friars’ offensive efforts and Wallace was able to put the final nail in with an empty-net goal at 19:43. The goal was Wallace’s second of the game and seventh of the season and she was assisted by fellow senior Tiffany Owens (Novi, Mich.), her 12th helper on the year.

For the game, Providence out-shot UConn, 28-17. The Huskies were 3-for-5 on the power play while the Friars were 2-for-6. Shain notched 25 saves in the victory to move to 6-7-2.

Connecticut will next play host to No. 8 New Hampshire on February 19-20. The games will be played at Freitas Ice Forum on the Storrs campus with both contests beginning at 2:00 p.m.