The women’s ice hockey team squared off against tough Little Three rival Amherst at Spurrier-Snyder Rink on Saturday, Feb. 18. Prior to the game, players, coaches, and fans honored this year’s class of seven seniors: Rachel Aronow, Jess Brennan, Sam Curran, Abby Rutt, Ellery Sarosi, and Hailey Sholty. The game began with a stalemate, as the first and most of the second period went by without any goals. At 10:33 in the second period, Amherst was finally able to open the scoring and get by Allegra Grant ’20. However, not long afterwards, Cici Frattasio ’18 scored her seventh goal of the season with only 36 seconds left in the second period. Sarah Goss ’19 assisted on the goal, notching her first assist and point of the season.
Grant held strong the rest of the game despite numerous Purple and White attempts to score. A late penalty by Wesleyan in the third would give Amherst a chance to possibly win the game, but Grant and the Cardinal defense remained a formidable force during the match’s waning minutes. The game was sent into overtime, and both Brennan and Sarosi would have excellent chances to give Wesleyan the victory. Despite their efforts, they couldn’t put the puck past Amherst netminder Sabrina Dobbins, and the game ended in a 1-1 draw.
Wesleyan traveled to Amherst on Sunday, Feb. 19 to play its second game in the weekend series. The opposing team took a quick lead just 28 seconds into the game, but the Cardinals neutralized later in the first period at 18:38. The tying goal marked Bridget Sherman ‘19’s second of the season, with Aronow and Grace Keogh ’19’s second assists.
The game was quickly broken open, as the home team regained the lead with only 29 seconds remaining in the first period. In the second, Amherst increased their lead to 3-1 at 15:59, and scored again less than a minute later. With little time left on the clock, Wesleyan struck back at 19:15 with a score by Allie Damren ’20 to bring the Cardinals within two goals. The game ended in a Wesleyan loss of 4-2.
Despite Wesleyan’s Sunday loss, the weekend was a memorable one, especially for the team’s seniors. The Argus sat down with veteran senior Curran to reflect on her experience during her time at Wesleyan.
The Argus: How would you describe your overall experience on the team?
Sam Curran: Not to be the cliché, but I think my experience on this team can be pretty accurately described as that of being on a roller coaster. We’ve had some really good moments and really bad moments as all teams do, but what stayed consistent my whole ride through these four years was the unmatched support and friendship that I have gotten from teammates past and present. As a senior, you suddenly realize you’ve experienced essentially two generations of Wesleyan women’s hockey. You’ve got the group of teammates you had as a freshman and the group of teammates you have as a senior. Yeah, there’s a lot of overlap between those two groups, but what really remains true to the entire group of people I’ve shared my time on the team with is that I know I can count on them to have my back as a person, teammate, and friend for the rest of my life.
A: What’s been special about the 2016-17 season?
SC: I think what’s been special about this season is that we all came in with the will and the grit to prove something. In the league, we’ve been the disrespected underdog team for years (literally so many years I can’t even begin to explain), but within our own program we’ve known for so long what we could bring to each and every game. And it was frustrating week after week to be unable to show this to competitors! But then this year I think we finally got down to the business of showing everyone what we can bring. It takes more than just believing you can defeat a team: you’ve got to act on this belief. You have to do things to earn respect and earn the points we know we can put up. And this year’s team put these beliefs to action. Whatever the record looks like at the end of our run, I know that everyone on this year’s team put their heart into every action they took out there on the ice.
A: What advice do you want to give the underclassmen on the team?
SC: Underclassmen! My children! Words of advice, don’t get cocky. Whatever the end of this year looks like, you’ve got two or three more ahead of you where anything can change. Each year is a new year and deserves a fresh look and a positive, energetic attitude. Stay confident in what you can bring to the game and the team but humble and open to letting the team and the sport give back to you.
A: Do you plan to continue playing ice hockey in the future?
SC: I think my next big step in the hockey world will be to find a competitive beer league to play in. One where the stakes are low, but the good vibes are high. But seriously, hockey will always remain a part of my life. It’s impossible to avoid at this point.
Curran and the rest of the team team will push on into the postseason, a feat that they have not accomplished since the 2013-14 season. They will face off against top seed Middlebury on Saturday, Feb. 25.