Tuesday, 17 November 2015

New York Riveters capture first win in franchise history

With the Riveters hosting Military Appreciation Night, their first win in franchise history could not have come on a better day. Competing on home ice at Brooklyn’s Aviator Sports and Events Center, the red, white and blue emerged with a hard fought 3-2 win against the visiting Boston Pride.

Goaltender Nana Fujimoto, also a member of the Japanese national women’s team logged 42 saves for the historic win. For her efforts, she was recognized as the First Star of the Game. On the other end of the ice, Pride goaltender (and Cornell Big Red alum) Lauren Slebodnick was making her NWHL debut. Coincidentally, she also made 42 saves.

Pride superstar Hilary Knight opened the scoring at the 3:51 mark of the first period with a phenomenal backhand shot against Fujimoto. It would not take long for the Riveters to rebuff as Madison Packer tied the score. Only 13 seconds after Packer’s goal, Beth Hanrahan broke the deadlock, scoring her first career NWHL goal, providing the Riveters with their first lead of the game.

After a scoreless second period that saw the Pride outshoot the Riveters by a 17-10 margin, the Pride would tie the score in the third period on a power play. Knight and Corinne Buie would each earn their second points of the game, logging assists on Brianna Decker’s goal.

Once again, the power play would prove to be a key factor in the third period. As the Riveters peppered Slebodnick with 22 shots in the third, their efforts would eventually pay dividends.

With 2:28 remaining, Bray Ketchum would score on Slebodnick for the game winning tally. Considering that it was also her first career NWHL goal, said goal came in glorious fashion.

Earning the assist was Brooke Ammerman, who scored the first goal in Riveters history back on opening day. Ketchum would be recognized as the Second Star of the Game, while Knight, who also went a perfect 5-for-5 on faceoffs, earned Third Star of the Game honors.