Wasielewski's hat-trick leads Potsdam over Buffalo State 6-1

Wasielewski's hat-trick leads Potsdam over Buffalo State 6-1

Box Score

POTSDAM, N.Y. - The Potsdam women's hockey team (2-1) downed the Buffalo State Bengals (1-1-1) 6-1 on Friday night in the team's NEWHL opener. Potsdam took control of the contest early with great passing and their disruptive defense. Sophomore forward Natalie Wasielewski (Carnegie, Pa./Pittsburgh Penguins Elite) recorded a hat trick. Junior defenseman Delphine Léonard (Anjou, Quebec/Dawson College Prep) had a goal and an assist and sophomore forward Alexis Clark (Niagara Falls, N.Y./Buffalo Bisons) and junior forward Miranda Kolb (Watertown, N.Y./SUNY Cortland) netted the other two goals for the Bears.

After the period opened evenly, Potsdam jumped out in front on a shorthanded goal from Wasielewski at 7:53. Sophomore goalie of the Bengals Bri Gawronski (Dunkirk, N.Y./Buffalo Bisons) couldn't react to the speed of the Bears offense in transition and Wasielewski capitalized with a high shot. At the 14:00 mark, the Bears took advantage of their second power play of the night and extended their lead to 2-0. After the faceoff, the Bears' passing kept the Bengals on their heels. Gawronski made a diving stop on one shot, but Kolb stayed with the play and scored while the goalie was down. Junior forward Lucy Condon (Waterloo, Ontario/Waterloo Ravens) assisted on the goal. The score was unchanged at the first intermission.

Buffalo State cut the lead with its own shorthanded goal just 17 seconds into the second period. After a turnover by Potsdam in the offensive zone, senior forward Emma Ruggiero (Amherst, N.Y./Buffalo Regals) picked up a pass from junior forward Lila Toczek (North Tonawanda, N.Y./Niagara Jr. Purple Eagles) and went the length of the ice uncontested. Potsdam answered shortly after with two goals. First, Clark went through two defenders and loaded up her shot as she went around a third before depositing the puck just under the crossbar. The second goal came after Wasielewski intercepted a pass from Buffalo, split through the defense and buried her second goal of the night from the left circle. Despite being outshot 9-6 in the middle 20 minutes, the Bears had increased their lead to 4-1.

Léonard pushed the lead to 5-1 at 11:08 of the third after a she took a pass from sophomore forward Allie Banas (Buffalo, N.Y./Buffalo Bisons) and weaved all the way down the ice before scoring from the right side. Wasielewski scored her third goal of the night after Condon gained control of the puck and dished it to her. She finished the play with a bullet from the right circle. The goal gave the Bears a 6-1 lead and closed out the win.

Junior goalie Alexa Pfeiffer (Sylvania, Ohio/Little Caesar's) stopped 24 shots for the 15th victory of her career. She is now tied for second place on the program's wins list. Gawronski made 19 saves for the visitors.