Green Knights Advance to NCHA O'Brien Cup Playoffs Final Four

From Sports Information Director, February 23, 2013 | Women's Hockey
by Dan Lukes, dan.lukes@snc.edu, (920) 403-4077

SUPERIOR - St. Norbert College advanced to its first-ever Northern Collegiate Hockey Association O'Brien Cup Playoffs Final Four by winning a wild 6-5 affair over UW-Superior to sweep the quarterfinal series at Wessman Arena.

The Green Knights (16-9-2), who won for the 11th time in their last 12 games, will face the College of St. Scholastica Friday in a semifinal game at UW-River Falls' Hunt Arena. The Falcons face UW-Stevens Point in the other semifinal.

St. Norbert trailed the eighth-ranked Yellowjackets (16-9-2) 3-2 after one period. Superior's Kelsey Firkus scored at the 6:58 mark of the first period, but St. Norbert answered with a power-play marker by Zoe Kurth at 9:04. The Yellowjackets countered with a power-play goal of their own at 12:35 by Haley Olmstead. Ali Parker then knotted the game at 2-2 with a goal at 16:07. Superior went into the first intermission with the lead thanks to a Chelsey Wierschem power-play goal at 17:55.

The Green Knights outscored Superior 3-1 in the second period. Myranda Hayes made the score 3-3 with her first goal of the season at 4:21. Superior's Bailey Lane scored a power-play goal at 13:37, but St. Norbert would scored the next three goals. Kurth scored shorthanded to even the score at 4-4 with a goal at 14:01. Henriette Ostergaard then followed with a goal at 15:33 for a 5-4 lead after 40 minutes.

Karissa Anderson scored a power-play goal at 8:55 of the third period for a 6-4 edge. Superior got back to within one on a power-play goal by Kiara De Kezel at 14:55. The Yellowjackets had the extra attacker on for the last 1:19 but couldn't force overtime.

Superior outshot St. Norbert 21-18. Kaley Gibson made 16 saves for St. Norbert, while Megan Leikkari made 12 stops for Superior. The Yellowjackets were 4-for-8 on the power play, while St. Norbert was 2-for-4.