SHELTON, Conn. – Despite a 47-16 advantage in shots, the Sacred Heart women's ice hockey team could not complete the season sweep of Rhode Island on Saturday afternoon at the Sports Center of Connecticut. Alisha DiFilipo netted a hat trick for the Rams, including the game winner with just 21 seconds remaining, while Abbey Torres made 45 saves in net.
Falling behind 2-0 in the first period, SHU fought back to tie it with two goals of their own in the second. Hanna Skelley cut the deficit in half just 3:43 out of the first intermission, intercepting a pass in the zone and sending her wrister from the right circle past Torres. Then, just past the half way mark of the period Casey Stathopoulos evened the score as an Amie Varano pass sent her streaking down the center of the ice for a one on one opportunity with the goalie. Stathopoulos deked right before cutting back to the left and sending her backhand into the top right corner.
Torres was at her best in the third period, making 21 of her 45 saves in the final 20 minutes, as Sacred Heart outshot Rhode Island by 18. SHU also dominated the faceoff battle, winning 53 to Rhode Island's 19. Amanda Fontaine made 13 saves in the loss.
The first period was a tale of two halves. SHU dominated the first portion, recording the first eight shots of the game, but the Pioneers would then run into trouble due to penalties. The first URI score was not an official power play goal, but was set up as a direct result of it as DiFilippo put the Rams up just three seconds after a power play had ended. She then doubled the lead just 2:06 later while URI was a man up.
Sacred Heart will return to the ice one more time before Thanksgiving, traveling to Wesleyan for a 6 pm start on Tuesday.