(PRINCETON, N.J.) - Elaine Chuli (Waterford, Ontario) made 33 saves in regulation before Princeton (9-6-2) finally solved her 57 seconds into overtime to sweep a two-game set with the UConn women's hockey team (4-12-2) on Friday night at Hobey Baker Rink.
The 1-0 loss dropped UConn to 2-2-2 this year in overtime contests after winning their first two such games earlier this year. The Huskies were out-shot 34-15 in the setback, and went 0-for-4 on the power play. UConn held Princeton off the board on special teams, going a perfect 6-for-6 on the penalty kill in the contest.
A pair of early penalties in the first period led to more than a minute of 4-on-4 action, before UConn took to the power play briefly but couldn't convert. Princeton's Jaimie McDonnell made a bid to get the Tigers on the board 8:40 into the first, but Chuli stood tall to make a big save and keep the score even. MacDonnell took a shot at getting UConn on the board at 10:27 with a big slap shot, but a kick save from Kimberly Newell, who stopped all 15 shots she faced to earn the shutout, turned aside the chance.
Cristin Shanahan took a tripping call for Princeton at 11:09, giving UConn the man advantage again. Newell gloved a rocket from the point off the stick of Kayla Campero (Wallingford, Conn.) early in the power play, then snagged another blast from Campero at the tail end of the advantage. The Tigers went back on the power play shortly after, but the Huskies curbed any offense they could generate. The game remained scoreless through the opening stanza after Newell stopped a pair of strong bids from Margaret Zimmer (St. Charles, Ill.) late in the first.
Kelsey Koelzer, who scored twice last night for Princeton, made a bid with a one-timer in front of the cage about five minutes into the second period, but Chuli was there for the stop. Princeton took to the power play at 9:06 of the frame, but the Huskies were able to kill it off without the Tigers generating much of a threat. Emily Snodgrass (Eagan, Minn.) went end-to-end before a backhand bid for UConn 14 minutes into the frame, but Newell was able to stuff it out and cover up.
Koelzer went off for Princeton at 15:22 of the second, and Erin Burns (Listowel, Ontario) nearly broke the tie with a good look at the end of the UConn power play that Newell stopped. The game went to the second intermission the same way it went to the first, with the score tied at 0-0.
UConn killed off an early Princeton power play in the third, and then went on the advantage itself 6:10 into the period. The Huskies had chances off the stick of Leah Buress (Windsor, Ontario) and Jessica Stott (Niverville, Manitoba) on their power play, but Newell turned aside each effort to keep it scoreless.
Buress went off for checking at 10:44 of the third, before seconds later Princeton took an interference call to force a stretch of 4-on-4 action. That only lasted briefly when another call on UConn forced UConn into defending a 4-on-3, which it killed off along with the ensuing 5-on-4 to keep the contest scoreless into the final five minutes of the third.
Princeton used a timeout 17:52 into the third period, but neither team could generate another chance through the remainder of regulation and the contest went to overtime.
The Tigers found a winner less than a minute into overtime, when Brianna Leahy forced a turnover in the Huskies' end and walked in to beat Chuli one-on-one. Leahy's goal was unassisted at 0:57 of the extra period.
Up next, UConn returns home for the first time since late November when it welcomes No. 4/5 Harvard to Freitas Ice Forum. Puck drop on Jan. 7 against the Crimson is set for 7 p.m.