Monday, February 20, 2012

Championship Sunday

In the most achievement-laden afternoon of the season for Penn State hockey, two of University Park's three teams clinched conference titles on Sunday.

Click to enlarge. Photo:

The Lady Icers finished a sweep of Vermont with a 4-2 win over Vermont on Senior Day behind two Taylor Gross goals, and in doing so clinched the ECWHL regular season title. PSU's 7-2-1 record in league games, good for 15 points, narrowly edged out Rhode Island (7-3-0, 14 points), Northeastern (6-3-1, 13) and Massachusetts (5-3-2, 12).

As a reminder, the latter three teams will be competing for the ACHA national championship next month while Penn State will not. Fair? Hardly. Regardless, the Lady Icers will attempt to double up on their accomplishment with the ECWHL tournament title on Saturday and Sunday in Kingston, RI.

Click to enlarge. Photo: George Dinsmore

The Ice Lions, after rolling to a 12-0-0 MACHA North record (enough for the regular season title, obviously), reinforced their status as the league's top dog by taking the playoff championship as well through a 4-1 victory over Rider. Senior captain Jim Recupero opened the scoring for PSU, while Ben Snow, Ryan Seifert and Fredrik Linge rendered Rider's answer to Recupero's goal meaningless. The Ice Lions earned their way to the final via a 5-0 blanking of Temple on Saturday.

PSU will compete at ACHA Division 2 nationals in Ft. Myers, FL March 16-20, but first, a showdown with MACHA South winner Maryland-Baltimore County looms on March 10th for the overall MACHA championship.

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