In its final two games of the regular season, Syracuse women's ice hockey dominated CHA opponent Lindenwood at the War Memorial Arena. The first game was a 6-1 blowout on Friday. The second, on Saturday, was senior day, the last home game of the season and the last of their career for seniors on the team. The Orange gave the seniors a perfect exit, shutting out Lindenwood and taking the victory 2-0.
The Orange are now on a seven-game win streak. Looking back at the preseason polls, Syracuse was expected to take the CHA regular season title home, but came up three points short to Mercyhurst. Not to discourage the team, the head into the CHA playoffs with a first round bye and tons of momentum.
An even bigger storyline to come out of this series is Melissa Piacentini. She has chalked her name yet again on top of the Orange record books. With two assists in the two games she now holds the record for most career assists of any Syracuse player. Piacentini is now the proud owner of EVERY offensive record in Syracuse women's ice hockey history.
Piacentini had the record assist on Friday, but teammate Nicole Renault had an assist of her own to move into a tie with Piacentini at 58. Then on Saturday, Piacentini dished out another assist to give her sole possession of the record. Renault may make a run at the record in the CHA Tournament, so Piacentini's clean sweep of the record books isn't completely safe just yet. But, a little friendly competition never hurt anyone. So can she be considered the Greatest of All Time? Decide for yourself, but the program seems to think so.
A big piece to the success of the weekend was Stephanie Grossi. She had a hat trick in the first game, her second of the season, and another goal the following day. It was a huge weekend for the sophomore and although the team is losing a lot of great seniors, it gives a good look at what they will be keeping for the future.
But this weekend was really about the seniors. The Orange will be graduating five seniors this spring: (from right to left) Melissa Piacentini, Danielle Leslie, Jenn Gilligan, Nicole Renault, and Nicole Ferrara.
The next stop for Syracuse is the CHA Tournament, where they have the aforementioned first round bye and will have to wait to hear who they play. If the Orange win the tournament, they will capture the program's first bid to the NCAA tourney. It was a feat they nearly accomplished last year when they took RIT into double overtime in the conference final before falling 2-1.