Kalley Armstrong scored her seventh goal of the season tonight at Clarkson (photo Gil Talbot).
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – The No. 2 Harvard women's hockey team was penalized seven times Friday night and the Crimson paid for it in the form of a 3-1 loss at No. 7 Clarkson. Kalley Armstrong scored the Crimson's lone goal, but Clarkson junior Carly Mercer had the upper hand with three goals, including two on the power play.
With the loss, Harvard (16-2-1, 13-1-0) snaps its bid for an undefeated season in ECAC play, but still holds on to first place in the conference standings. Clarkson (19-6-0, 11-2-0) sits two points behind the Crimson and one game back in the loss column.
Clarkson struck first in Harvard's fourth game against a ranked opponent. The Crimson was whistled for having too many players on the ice and the Golden Knights capitalized with a power-play tally at the 4:06 mark. Carly Mercer beat Harvard freshman Emerance Maschmeyer to make Harvard trail in an ECAC contest for the first time this season.
The Golden Knight's lead lasted just nine minutes, as Kalley Armstrong put in a skater-advantage score of her own at 13:12. Kaitlin Spurling handled the puck under the goal line on the right side and fed Armstrong on the far post outside of the crease. The junior slid a shot to the low left corner of the goal and Clarkson's Erica Howe could not get a pad on it with her outstretched right leg.
Michelle Picard got two good looks off for Harvard, pounding the puck off Howe's right leg on back-to-back attempts with 4:30 left in the frame, but neither could get lifted enough to find the net and the two teams entered the first intermission tied, 1-1.
Harvard owned the puck for much of the second period, as Clarkson played the 20 minutes with four skaters on the ice for 5:16. The Crimson power-play came up empty in the period, but Harvard's steady offensive flow kept the puck on the attacking end. Clarkson managed six shots in the period, and Maschmeyer blocked each, while the Crimson sent eight attempts at Howe.
Clarkson gained the lead again 2:35 into the final frame. Emerance Maschmeyer made a fantastic save, covering from post-to-post to stop a Golden Knights' attempt with her left leg, but the initial block left the newcomer sprawling in the crease. Mercer converted once again for Clarkson, this time with a flick over Maschmeyer tucked perfectly inside the top left post.
Mercer finished the game's scoring 6:51 later with her second power-play goal to result in her first career hat trick.
Maschmeyer ended the night with 21 saves, while Howe, who broke Clarkson's career wins record, blocked 17 Harvard shots. It was just the third time this season that Harvard has been outshot. The Crimson went one for five on the power play and the Golden Knights were two of seven.
Harvard looks to rebound tomorrow with a 4 p.m. contest at St. Lawrence.
Harvard's 1-0 deficit in the first period was the first time the Crimson had trailed in an ECAC contest this season ... Mercer's third period goals were the first Harvard has given up in the third period during ECAC action this season ... Harvard allowed more than two goals for the first time this season ... Katey Stone, The Landry Family Head Coach for Harvard's Women's Ice Hockey remains within six wins of 400 for her career ... Harvard snaps a 13-game unbeaten streak which was formerly the second longest in the country to Minnesota's 24-game run … The Crimson has streak of 35 straight penalties killed came to an end in the first period.