PREVIEW: Women’s hockey faces Syracuse in season finale

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Women’s hockey hosts Syracuse for their final series of the year. Photo Credit: Tyler Gallo

By Cameron Macariola, Contributor

NEVILLE TWP– Robert Morris women’s hockey (13-5-1, 13-5-1 CHA) 2020-21 regular season is coming to a close this weekend as they take on the red-hot Syracuse Orange (8-8-1, 6-6-1 CHA).

The Colonials are in the midst of a four-game win streak and the visiting Orange are coming in with a five-game win streak of their own. Someone’s winning streak will come to an end on Friday at Clearview Arena at 7:05 p.m., and both teams look to close out the regular season with a win at 2:05 p.m. this Saturday.

Recapping RMU

The Colonials played their first non-conference game of the 2021 year last weekend as they took on Sacred Heart (1-7, 1-2 NEWHA). It was senior weekend and the seniors did not disappoint. Senior netminder Molly Singewald got her first collegiate start and stopped all 14 shots that came her way in game one.

Ellie Marcovsky scored the lone goal of the game as the Colonials poured the rubber on Sacred Heart’s goalie Frankie Sanchez taking 73 shots. Singewald, at the end of the game, was tackled by Michaela Boyle who would be the star of game two, as she scored four of the eight Colonials goals. One of those goals was jaw-dropping as she danced by the Sacred Heart defender before going top-shelf.

On the other side, Singewald once again got the start and once again completed the shutout. All four seniors skaters completed senior day with a point and Singewald with a picture-perfect weekend, taking home CHA Goalie of the Week honors.

Scouting Syracuse

The Orange have won their last five games where there was no shortage of offense as they found the back of the net 25 times. Their last two wins came against LIU (2-8, 2-1 NEWHA), where they ousted the Sharks by a score of 5-2 and 5-0. The last time the Orange met the Colonials the two goalies dueled. Allison Small and Raygan Kirk both faced over 30 shots both games, but late third period goals lead the Colonials to prevail both times by a score of 2-1.

Players to Watch

Emily Curlett (RMU) – Curlett is the quarterback of the Colonials power play. When they score, you know her name is likely on the scoresheet. With Syracuse having one of the best penalty kills in the nation, Curlett will need to be at her best to capitalize on the chances the Colonials get.

Maggy Burbidge (RMU) – Last time the Colonials met the Orange, Burbidge’s name was apart of both game-winning goals. She scored a highlight-reel goal and had a helper. She looks to repeat this performance against the Orange and lead the Colonials to victory.

Lauren Bellefontaine (‘CUSE) – Bellefontaine has been red hot as of late as she has scored a goal in her last four games, and is tied for the lead in assists with 12. RMU must find a way to stop her or she’ll lead the Orange to another upset against a top CHA team.

Jessica DiGirolamo (Syracuse) – DiGirolamo has been one of the Orange’s best leaders so far this season. She has eight goals and six assists as a defender so far and looks to add more this weekend. The Colonials would rather add to her team-leading 28 blocks rather than seeing her on the scoresheet.

Predictions

Both teams have been on fire as of late and have no shortage of offensive powers. We could either see a really high-scoring game or another goalie duel. I think we will get one of both.

Game one will be the Colonials continuing their win streak with a 5-3 win. In game two, I believe the Colonials can finish their regular season out on top with a 3-1 win.

I will be attending both games this weekend so follow my Twitter, @SentryMacariola, for updates and more.