Loss in NCHA Championship Game Ends Bulldogs Season

Olivia Rork

RIVER FALLS, Wis. - The game was up in the air after four combined goals in the first period, but the Bulldog Women's Hockey team lost in the NCHA Tournament Final to #7 Wis.-River Falls, 4-2. Adrian started out the scoring and was tied 2-2 going into the second period, but could not find the back of the net the rest of the game, when the Falcons did twice.

Senior Olivia Rork scored the first goal, her 15th of the season, in the final game of her career on a power play. Senior Kelly Salis and sophomore Danielle Smith got the assists. The next two goals in the period were scored by the Falcons, then Adrian answered when freshman Courtney Millar scored an even strength goal at the 11:21 mark in the first period, to make the score even, 2-2.

Sophomore Emily Michelin started in the goal for the Bulldogs, but was pulled after giving up two more goals in the second period, ending the game with 10 saves and four goals against. Michelin was clutch the previous night, allowing zero goals in the semi-final win over Wis.-Superior while stopping 28 shots. Senior Brittany Zeches came in to replace Michelin for the final 28 minutes of the game, and stopped six shots without giving up a goal. The Bulldogs played with an empty net for the final 32 seconds of the game, trying for a desperation comeback.

On the game, the Bulldogs managed to out-shoot the Falcons, 24-20. Both teams were called for five penalties, but Adrian had three penalties in the third period, which made a comeback difficult.

The season will now end for the Adrian Bulldogs Women's Hockey team, as they will finish with a record of 16-10-2 on the year and a second place finish in the NCHA Tournament. The year featured a nine-game winning streak, three players in Rork, Salis, and Zeches earning All-NCHA honors, and Millar and Hannah McGowan earning All-Rookie honors.