DURHAM, N.H. -- Providence College rallied from three goals down to force overtime and capture a 5-4 win over the University of New Hampshire women's ice hockey team in Hockey East quarterfinal action at Whittemore Center on Saturday afternoon. The Friars, who improve to 15-15-5, advance to the semifinals, while the Wildcats season comes to a close with a 14-16-4 overall record.
Both teams had chances in the overtime time period, but it was Brooke Simpson stole the puck behind the Wildcat net and slid the puck out front to Beth Hanrahan for the game-winning wrister at 5:51 of the first overtime. The goal gave the Friars their only lead of the game as UNH built leads to 3-0 through the first 37 minutes and 4-2 with just over seven minutes left in regulation, but PC responded with goals at 13:23 and 15:48 of the third to force overtime.
Lascelle gave the Wildcats a 1-0 lead at the 12:54 mark of the first period as she scored her first goal of the year. Lascelle forced a turnover along the left side of the boards and skated towards the net. The sophomore aimed a shot to the lower left corner of the net and past Providence goalie, Nina Riley. Lascelle was unassisted on the play.
Just 10 seconds later, Caroline Broderick (Marblehead, Mass.) tallied her second goal of the season as she found a pass from Lascelle in front of the net and one-timed her shot into the goal. Lascelle found the puck deep in the corner of the boards and shoveled the pass that Broderick skated on to.
The Friars outshot the Wildcats in the period by a margin of 11-6. Each of PC's 11 shots were turned away by UNH netminder Jenn Gilligan (Maple Ridge, British Columbia) to preserve the 2-0 lead.
Junior Arielle O'Neill (St. Catherines, Ontario) extended the Wildcat lead to 3-0 at the 4:51 mark of the second period when she tallied her eighth goal of the season. Jessica Hitchcock (LaSalle, Ontario) started the play when she dumped a pass off to an awaiting Alexis Crossley (Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia) just inside of the blueline. Crossley sent a pass off the wall behind the net that found O'Neill in the right faceoff circle. The junior ripped a shot from just inside the circle that found the back of the net.
Providence made its way onto the board at 17:17 of the stanza when Victoria Virtue tallied her second goal of the season on a power play. Rebecca Morse received the puck from Nicole Anderson and in turn found Virtue for the assists.
Through two periods of play, the Wildcats held a 3-1 lead.
Molly Illikainen cut the Providence deficit to one goal at 4:35 of the third after ripping a shot from within the faceoff circle and past Gilligan. Haley Frade dished the puck over to Lexi Slattery near the boards. Slattery found Illikainen who found the back of the net with the shot.
Kristina Lavoie (Fonthill, Ontario) added another goal to the UNH total at 12:55 on a breakaway. Megan Armstrong (Edina, Minn.) cleared the puck from the UNH zone and found Hannah Armstrong (Newmarket, Ontario) in the neutral zone. Hannah Armstrong sent the puck to Lavoie in stride and beat Riley to the lower left.
The Friars retaliated with a pair of unanswered goals, the first of which came from Anderson at 13:23. Jessica Vella recorded the assist after sending the puck to Anderson in front of the net. In a scrum in front, Anderson jammed the puck into the net. Brooke Simpson tied the game at 4-4 at 15:48 of the period after sending a shot from just outside the left faceoff circle through traffic and into the net.
Providence outshot UNH 38-25 including a 13-7 edge in the third period and a 7-3 advantage in the overtime period.
Nina Riley stopped 21 shots including eight in the second period and improves to 4-4-1 on the season. Gilligan made 33 saves in a losing effort and finishes the 2012-13 campaign with a 10-5-3 mark.
New Hampshire took advantage of one of its two power play opportunities as Lavoie tallied the goal on a breakaway. Providence went 1-for-3 with the advantage after Virtue scored the power play goal for the Friars.
The game was the final contest for UNH's seven-player senior class: Katie Brock, Kailey Chappell, Lavoie, Horn, Bryanna Farris (Carleton Place, Ontario), Katie Kleinendorst (Vestal, N.Y.) and Paige Goloubef (Oakville, Ontario).