Women's Ice Hockey Prepare for Nutmeg Classic at QU

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FAIRFIELD, Conn. - The Sacred Heart University women's ice hockey team will take part in the Nutmeg Classic, hosted by Quinnipiac, this Friday and Saturday.  The Pioneers will take on the Bobcats at 4:00 pm on Friday.

About the Pioneers... Sacred Heart enters the weekend 1-8 overall after sitting idle over the last week.  Two weeks ago the Pioneers got their first win of the season as they went to Holy Cross and came away with a 3-2 victory.  In their next contest, the Pioneers let a late third period lead slip away en route to a 3-2 defeat in overtime at the hands of Nichols.  Senior forward Brittany Hartman (Edina, Minn.) leads the team in scoring with four goals and one assist.  Junior defender Nicole Palazzo (Rocky Hill, Conn.) has collected a team-high three assists.  Freshman Alexius Schutt (Elk River, Minn.) has started each game between the pipes for SHU and holds a .899 save percentage and 4.73 goals against average.

Last Time Out... The Pioneers had a one goal lead heading into the final seconds of regulation, but Nichols sophomore Mary Fehr netted the game-tying goal with 15 ticks left on the clock and the Bison goal empty.  Hartman, assisted by senior Taryn Lapierre (Oakland, R.I.), posted a power play goal to tie the game at one, midway through the third period.  Less than a minute later, junior Tara Kent (Glenview, Ill.) tallied another power play score to give SHU a 2-1 lead, off a pass from Palazzo.  In the extra frame, NC's Krista-Jean Forand found the back of the net for the deciding score.  Schutt made 17 saves in the Pioneer cage.

Vs. the Field... Last month, Sacred Heart fell 5-0 at Quinnipiac.  The Bobcats were able to score early goals in each period that would prove costly for the Pioneers.  Schutt totaled 48 saves, while SHU was outshot 53-13 for the game.  In last season's opening game of the Nutmeg Classic at Yale, Sacred Heart fell 10-1.  SHU and Connecticut have not faced off since the 2008-'09 season opener, a game that UConn took by a score of 13-0.

2009 Classic... Host Yale and UConn were victorious in Friday's action of last year's Nutmeg Classic at Ingalls Rink.  In the final, the Huskies skated to a 6-1 win over the Bulldogs behind two goals from Jennifer Chaisson.  Sacred Heart fell to Quinnipiac in the consolation game, 11-1.   Trailing 3-0, Lauren Fontaine (Windsor, Ont.) notched a power play goal, the lone SHU score of the afternoon.

Road Warriors... Through the first nine game of the season Sacred Heart has only played on its home ice twice.  After this weekend's classic the Pioneers return to the Wonderland of Ice for a pair of games against St. Michael's on December 3 and 4 before hitting the road for their next six contests.