NEWHL Championship Preview: Plattsburgh

NEWHL Championship Preview: Plattsburgh

 

2020 NEWHL Tournament Championship

No. 2 Oswego State (16-6-4) at No. 1 Plattsburgh State (25-1-0)

Saturday, March 7, 2020 • 3 p.m. • Plattsburgh, N.Y. • Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena

Live Stats • Live Video • Live Audio (1340 AM/100.7 FM WIRY)

 

PLATTSBURGH, N.Y. – The No. 1 seed Plattsburgh State women's ice hockey team resumes its quest to win its third consecutive Northeast Women's Hockey League (NEWHL) title on Saturday afternoon at the Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena, as the Cardinals host No. 2 seed Oswego State in the NEWHL Tournament championship game at 3 p.m.
 
TICKET PRICING: Tickets are $5 for adults, $3 for children ages 5-12 and free for children ages 4 and under and for current students from NEWHL schools with valid college-issued identification. There are no refunds or exchanges for NEWHL postseason tickets. All seating is general admission.
 
ABOUT THE SERIES: In a series that dates back to 2006-07, the Cardinals are 37-1-1 all-time against the Lakers. Plattsburgh State swept Oswego State in its three regular-season games against the Lakers this season. On Nov. 8 and Nov. 9, the Cardinals won by scores of 7-1 and 3-0, respectively, and they prevailed, 3-1, on Jan. 15. Saturday's game is a rematch of last year's NEWHL semifinal game, which Plattsburgh State won, 7-1, at the Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena.

ABOUT THE CARDINALS: Plattsburgh State (25-1-0, 18-0-0 NEWHL) is seeking its third NEWHL title in as many years and its eighth straight conference championship overall. The Cardinals won each of the final five Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) West championships. Plattsburgh State has also won seven NCAA Division III national championships, including five of the past six, and has advanced to the national semifinals for eight straight seasons. The Cardinals enter Saturday's contest on a 17-game winning streak. The Cardinals have the longest-active unbeaten streak (17 games) in NCAA Division III women's ice hockey.

Plattsburgh State, which is ranked No. 1 in the USCHO.com Women's Division III Top-10 Poll, has held the top spot in the poll for 17 consecutive polls. Plattsburgh State, which leads the NEWHL and ranks second in NCAA Division III women's ice hockey in goals per game (4.81), has seven student-athletes with at least 10 goals scored on the season.

Junior forward and alternate captain Annie Katonka (Pittsburgh, Pa./Pittsburgh Penguins Elite), who was named the NEWHL Player of the Year and was selected to the All-NEWHL First Team, has tallied 20 goals, 20 assists, 40 points, nine power-play goals and five game-winning goals over 25 games played this season. Katonka leads the NEWHL in goals, points and power-play goals. In addition, Katonka is tied with sophomore forward Sara Krauseneck (Saginaw, Mich./Northern Cyclones) for the second-most game-winning goals in the NEWHL (5), while tying with, junior defenseman and team captain Erin McArdle (Macomb, Mich./Belle Tire) for the third-highest plus-minus (+27). Nationally, Katonka ranks second in NCAA Division III women's ice hockey in points per game (1.60), third in power-play goals, tied for fourth in game-winning goals, fifth in goals per game (0.80) and tied for 15th in assists per game (0.80). Katonka, who garnered her 100th career point in the Cardinals' 9-1 win over SUNY Canton on Jan. 17, 2020, enters the game with 117 career points.   
 
Joining Katonka with double-digit totals in goals are: Krauseneck with 18, sophomore forward Nicole Unsworth (Milwaukee, Wis./East Coast Wizards) with 15, sophomore forward Taylor Whitney (Livonia, Mich./Little Caesars) with 13, junior forward Abby Brush (Mount Prospect, Ill./Chicago Young Americans) with 12, freshman forward Ivy Boric (Newport Beach, Calif./Anaheim Lady Ducks) with 10 and junior forward Kaitlin Drew-Mead (Niagara Falls, N.Y./Buffalo Bisons) with 10.

Sophomore Ashley Davis (Winterville, N.C./Northwood School) Davis, who was named the NEWHL Goaltender of the Year and was selected to the All-NEWHL First Team, has recorded an unblemished overall record (18-0-0) and owns a 12-0-0 mark during NEWHL conference play. She currently leads the league in goals against average (0.91), save percentage (.949) and winning percentage (1.000), while her 298 saves rank eighth. Davis' NEWHL numbers include a 0.86 goals against average and a .940 save percentage, and she has recorded 158 saves while allowing just 10 goals. At the national level, Davis ranks second in total wins, first in winning percentage, fifth in goals against average and 11th in save percentage in NCAA Division III women's ice hockey. She is tied for sixth in the nation in shutouts with six.
 
Katonka and Davis were joined on the All-NEWHL First Team by senior defenseman Hannah Kiraly (Glendale, Ariz./Northern Cyclones), McArdle, and Krauseneck. Whitney was named to the All-NEWHL Second Team. Kiraly is the first student-athlete in NEWHL history to be named to the All-NEWHL First Team three times. She also earned the honor in 2018 and 2019.
 
Boric and freshman defenseman Kendall Wasik (Novi, Mich./HoneyBaked) were named to the NEWHL All-Rookie Team. Boric leads all NEWHL skaters in assists (23), while leading NEWHL rookies in both points (33) and plus-minus (+25). Nationally, Boric ranks first among freshmen in NCAA Division III women's hockey in assists, while ranking third in points. She has tallied at least one point in 20 games, including 10 multi-point games. Wasik has tallied five assists for five points and a +20 rating in 26 games played this season. Tied for ninth in the NEWHL in plus-minus, Wasik has also tallied 21 blocked shots.
 
Unsworth is tied for first nationally with six game-winning goals.

Nationally, the Cardinals rank first in team winning percentage (.962), first in penalty-kill efficiency (98.0 percent), second in scoring margin (3.85), second in combined special teams (59.6 percent), third in power-play efficiency (27.7 percent) and tied for third in goals allowed per game (0.96). Head coach Kevin Houle has amassed a 422-51-25 record in his 17 years behind the Cardinal bench. Earlier this season, he earned his 400th coaching victory in the Cardinals' 3-1 win over then-No. 8 Norwich University on Wednesday, Nov. 6, at the Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena. 

ABOUT THE LAKERS: Oswego State (16-6-4, 10-4-4 NEWHL) is 1-37-1 all-time against Plattsburgh State, including a 0-12-1 record in their last 13 meetings. As the No. 4 seed last year in the NEWHL Tournament, the Lakers lost to No. 1 seed Plattsburgh State, 7-1, in a semifinal matchup at the Ronald B. Stafford Ice Arena. Senior goaltender Rachael Farmer (15-6-4) was named to the All-NEWHL Second Team. Farmer has recorded 559 saves, a .916 save percentage and a 2.05 goals against average on the season. Freshman forward Megan Teachout earned NEWHL Rookie of the Year honors after tallying 13 goals, 15 assists, 28 points, four power-play goals and two game-winning goals this season. Teachout is the team leader in goals, assists and points. Head coach Diane Dillon is in her 14th season leading Oswego and owns a career record of 179-177-31.

WHAT'S NEXT: The winner of this game will earn the NEWHL's automatic bid into the NCAA Division III Tournament.