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Women's Hockey Season Comes to Heartbreaking End
By: Kevin Meinholz, Sports Information Director
EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (UWECBlugolds.com) - After a 5-3 win Friday night, the UW-Eau Claire women's hockey team fought to the end but came up short to Concordia University (Wis.) in a Northern Collegiate Hockey Association quarterfinal game at Hobbs Ice Center tonight.
The Blugolds and Falcons battled back and forth for the first 60 minutes tonight but in the end, Concordia struck the final blow.
After beating Eau Claire 5-4, the teams went into a 20-minute minigame. But the teams skated even in the first minigame and it ended in a 0-0 tie. In the second minigame, a sudden death session, the Falcons struck fast to win 1-0. A goal from Samantha Meuwissen at 2:12 gave Concordia the win to advance to the NCHA semifinals, which will be contested next weekend in River Falls.
In the regular game, Christine Dickinson (Sr.-Layton, Utah/Shattuck-St. Mary's) got the Blugolds on the board at 1:07 in the first period but Concordia tied it up at 6:37.
The Blugolds went back ahead less than four minutes later with Kristin Faber (Sr.-Austin, Minn.) scoring but at 11:28, the Falcons again tied the game at 2-2.
Eau Claire again found the back of the net, this time with Kelli Johnson (Sr.-Farmington, Minn.) scoring at 17:26 but Concordia once again answer at 18:54.
With the game tied 3-3 after one period and the majority of the second, the Falcons took their first lead of the night at 19:37 in the second with a goal from Sarah Luberda.
But in the third period, Faber scored her second goal of the night to tie the score at 4-4. However, with 33 seconds left in the game, Luberda found the back of the Blugold net and the Falcons hung on for the 5-4 win.
Mara Stormer (So.-Waunakee, Wis.) played the entire game in the goal and stopped 19 shots. She also played both minigames and saved eight out of nine shots.
Eau Claire was 2-for-5 on power-plays while Concordia was 1-for-3.
The Blugolds end the season with a 14-8-5 record, the second-most wins the team has achieved in a season. In 2004-05, Eau Claire won a program-best 15 games.