KINGSTON, Ont. (from Queen’s Gaels) – The No.7 Gaels (13-3-2-3) took a 3-0 win over the Laurier Golden Hawks (2-1-13-3) on Friday night at the Memorial Centre as Queen’s picked up their third straight shutout. The Gaels have now not allowed a goal in 181 minutes and 27 seconds of play.
Prior to the game Gaels head coach Matt Holmberg presented a gift to long-time Laurier head coach Rick Osborne who will be retiring at seasons end. Osborne has lead Laurier to nine OUA championships and one CIS title in his 15 years behind the Golden Hawks bench.
The Gaels were quick to strike on home ice in what will be their final homestand of the OUA regular season as Michele Knecht (North York) got the puck in the slot and beat Laurier starting goaltender Hannah Miller above the blocker at the 1:27 mark of the opening period.
The two teams traded power play opportunities, but neither side scored the rest of the way in the opening frame. Laurier finished with the upper hand in shots firing eight compared to seven for the Gaels.
In the second period, Queen’s was once again able to find the back of the net. This time a nifty pass from Bryce Desa(London) found an open Abby Lafreniere (Kirkland Lake) who batted the puck through the legs of Miller for her second of the season.
Laurier found themselves in penalty trouble in the second as the Gaels had numerous power plays including a five-on-three for over a minute. The Golden Hawks defence held strong to keep the Gaels lead to just two.
In the third, the penalties continued to pile up but this time it was the Gaels who found themselves in the box. Laurier had a pair of four-minute power play attempts, but the Gaels defence along with strong goaltending from Makenzy Arsenault (Whitby) came through to halt any Laurier attack.
With a late power play and just over three minutes left in the game, Laurier head coach Rick Osborne decided to pull Miller for an extra attacker.
A strong effort to clear the puck out of the Gaels zone by Knecht resulted in her firing in an empty net goal from centre ice to seal the win for Queen’s 3-0.
By the numbers
3 – Straight shutouts for Queen’s
181:27 – Consecutive minutes of shutout hockey for Queen’s
2 – Goals for Knecht
14 – Total penalties in the game
The Gaels are back in action tomorrow night when the Waterloo Warriors come to town for the final home game for Queen’s. The Gaels will honour their senior players at 7:30 pm EST at the Memorial Centre.