Canton, NY – The third line had a huge night combining for nine points as the SUNY Canton women's hockey team earned a key 5-3 Colonial Hockey Conference victory against visiting Salem State University on Friday night in the Roos House.
The line of Rhea Coad (Wheatfield, NY), Whitney Bernier (Newport, VT), Grace Page (Buffalo, NY), Reagan Lynn (Chicago, IL) and Mariah McCue (Belleville, ON) combined for nine points on four goals and five assists.
The Roos (3-4-1, 3-1-1 CHC) dominated play early on but it was visiting Salem State (3-3-0, 2-3-0 CHC) who got on the board first midway through the opening period. After an initial shot from the point was saved, Roo goaltender Illie Berisha (Lake Ariel, PA) denied two more Kristin McKenzie attempts from point blank, but Danielle Kelley eventually put home the third rebound attempt for her second goal of the season.
SUNY Canton's shots on goal edge throughout the opening 20 minutes finally paid off at the 14:05 mark. Jessica Pele(Estevan, SK) fed Lynn who fired a shot from the point that was saved by Jenn Toussaint. Tess Adams (Calgary, AB) was in the right spot as she buried the rebound over the stick of Toussaint. The teams skated into first intermission 1-1 as the Roos held a commanding 29-8 shots on goal advantage.
The Vikings took their first lead of the game at the 6:30 mark of the middle period when McKenzie netted her team-leading seventh tally of the season, this one with the skater advantage. Danielle Kelley earned a helper on the play.
The Roos tied the contest at the 8:17 mark when Page netted her first career goal off the setup from Coad. Salem State retook a 3-2 advantage at the 14:55 mark when Madison Knight netted her first of the season off a shot from the point that eluded Berisha as she appeared to be screened out in front. Alexandra Breen assisted the score.
SUNY Canton hung tough evening the seesaw battle once again when Bernier skated in on the breakaway as she beat the goaltender near post sneaking the puck under the pads to tie the game at three. Noelle Niemiec (Staten Island, NY) earned a helper on the play. The teams skated into the second intermission tied at 3-3.
The Roos used a strong start to the final period to break open the game. After killing their penalty SUNY Canton netted back-to-back goals 2:35 apart as McCue and Coad lit the lamp for the first times this season. Bernier and Coad earned helpers on the McCue tally, while Page assisted the Coad marker.
Berisha stopped 11 shots while allowing three goals over the first 34:55, while Rebecca DiNardo (Ottawa, ON) turned aside all six shots she faced to earn the victory over the final 25:05. Toussaint had a strong night making 56 saves for Salem State.
These two teams will have a rematch on Saturday at 2 p.m. at the Roos House. Stay up to date with the latest news directly from the SUNY Canton Athletics department by "liking" us on Facebook and "following" our Twitter, Instagram and YouTube accounts.