NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The Yale women's ice hockey team is approaching the halfway point of the regular season, but home games are already starting to get scarce. The Bulldogs host New Hampshire this Saturday (3:00 p.m., Ivy League Digital Network and ESPN3), then do not play at Ingalls again until Jan. 20. Just six home games remain on the regular season schedule.
BULLDOGS RUNNERS-UP AT NUTMEG CLASSIC
Yale (4-6-2, 2-5-1 ECAC Hockey) advanced to the Nutmeg Classic Championship Game for the ninth time in the tournament's 13 year history last month. The Bulldogs tied UConn 1-1 in overtime in the first round, but beat the Huskies 3-2 in the shootout to advance. Senior forward Phoebe Staenz (Zürich, Switzerland), Yale's last shooter, scored to give the Bulldogs the lead and freshman goaltender Tera Hofmann (Toronto, Ont.) sealed the win by denying UConn's final shot.
In the Championship Game Yale fell behind Merrimack 4-0 before scoring three times in the third period to get within striking distance. Senior defenseman Taylor Marchin (Algonac, Mich.) scored two of those goals, including one with four seconds left, but time ran out on Yale's comeback attempt. Marchin was named to the All-Tournament Team for her efforts.
YIP-CHUCK NAMED ECAC HOCKEY PLAYER OF THE MONTH
Senior forward Krista Yip-Chuck (Whitby, Ont.) was named ECAC Hockey Player of the Month for November. Yip-Chuck is tied for fourth in the nation in assists per game and is tied for eighth in the nation in points per game (6-12-18 in 12 games, 1.50 points per game). She has points in seven of the last eight games, including a 1-4-5 performance in the 7-2 win vs. Rensselaer Nov. 4.
Yip-Chuck was fourth on the team in scoring (5-15-20) last season, and extended her streak of consecutive games played to 92. Last spring the team voted her captain, a role which reflects her leadership both on and off the ice. She established a career high in assists last season while earning ECAC Hockey All-Academic honors for the second time.
STAENZ ADDS TO IMPRESSIVE LIST OF ACCOMPLISHMENTS
Senior forward Phoebe Staenz (Zürich, Switzerland), who leads all active Bulldogs in career points with 82, is sixth in the nation in goals per game (9 in 12 games, 0.75 goals per game). She leads Yale with a +14 and has incurred just one penalty. Staenz had a four-game goal scoring streak Nov. 4-12. That included a hat trick Nov. 4 in the 7-2 win vs. Rensselaer.
Staenz has extensive international playing experience, including scoring the game-tying goal in Switzerland's come-from-behind 4-3 win over Sweden for the bronze medal at the 2014 Olympics. At Yale, Staenz has been an impact player throughout her career despite missing multiple games while playing for the Swiss National Team. She tied for second on the Bulldogs in goals last season with nine, and was fifth in points with 17. She needs 18 more points this season to become one of four players in Yale history with 100 or more career points.
HOFMANN EXCELS IN NET
Freshman goaltender Tera Hofmann (Toronto, Ont.) started five straight games Oct. 29 through Nov. 12, posting a .915 save percentage and a 2.54 goals-against average. Hofmann was named ECAC Hockey Rookie of the Week after her first career game Oct. 29, making 35 saves as the Bulldogs earned a 1-1 tie in overtime with Princeton. After missing two games due to injury, she returned to make 31 saves against UConn in the first round of the Nutmeg Classic Nov. 25.
Hofmann is a graduate of Ursula Franklin Academy and played for the Durham West Jr. Lightning prior to coming to Yale. She attended the Team Ontario U18 selection camp last year.
MARCHIN AMONG TOP DEFENSEMEN IN SCORING
Senior defenseman Taylor Marchin (Algonac, Mich.), who was named to the Nutmeg Classic All-Tournament Team after scoring a pair of goals in the championship game, is second in the nation in points per game among defensemen (4-8-12 in 12 games, 1.00 points per game. Marchin has already topped her goal, assist and point totals from last season (1-5-6).
SOULIOTIS BUILDING OFF BREAKTHROUGH SEASON
Junior defenseman Mallory Souliotis (Acton, Mass.) is fourth on the team in assists with seven, including five in the last eight games. She had a breakthrough season last year, leading the team in scoring (4-21-25). That was a remarkable a 16-point improvement over her total from the previous year, and her assist total placed her third on Yale's single-season assists list. Souliotis earned second team All-Ivy League honors.
MURRAY A RISING STAR FOR YALE AND CANADA
Junior forward Eden Murray (Medicine Hat, Alta.) is eighth in the nation in assists per game (11 in 12 games, 0.92 points per game). She has at least one point in eight of the last nine games. She finished second on Yale in points last season (7-16-23) and followed that up this past summer by earning an invitation to Hockey Canada's National Team Development Camp for the fourth year in a row. Murray, who established career highs in all three scoring categories, was an honorable mention All-Ivy League selection. She is the younger sister of Yale defenseman Madi Murray '15, and has two other sisters who played at the collegiate level as well: Kelly Murray was a defenseman for Cornell and Logan Murray was a forward for McGill.
CLASS OF 2020
Yale welcomes five freshmen to the roster for 2016-17. The Class of 2020 includes three forwards, two defensemen and one goalie. The group includes three Americans and three Canadians.
The incoming freshmen have had many accomplishments on the ice, including one who won a silver medal playing for Canada's Under-18 team at the IIHF U18 Championship (defenseman Saroya Tinker (Oshawa, Ont.)) and another who was part of four straight trips to the National Tournament by the Mid Fairfield Stars (defenseman Kate Tewksbury (New York, N.Y.)). They have served in leadership roles, with five having been captains or assistant captains of teams. One was a semi-finalist for the prestigious Minnesota Ms. Hockey Award -- forward Laura Anderson (Lino Lakes, Minn.).
The incoming freshmen have also been recognized for their work in other fields, including one who earned honorable mention in the short story category from Scholastic Arts and Writing (goaltender Tera Hofmann (Toronto, Ont.)). They have also taken on significant projects such as starting a charity (forward Kirsten Nergaard (Stamford, Conn.) and Yando).
The members of the Class of 2020 have been active in their communities as well -- for example, forward Sophie Veronneau (Ottawa, Ont.) has volunteered with both Do it for Daron (raising awareness of youth mental health issues) and at the at the Centretown Emergency Food Centre in Ottawa.
Yale routinely has some of the best teams in the country on its schedule, and that remains the case in 2016-17. The Bulldogs will play three of the eight teams that participated in the 2016 NCAA Tournament.
The ECAC Hockey playoffs, which determine the recipient of the league's automatic berth in the NCAA Tournament, start Feb. 24. The top four teams in the regular season standings host teams five through eight in the best-of-three quarterfinal series. The ECAC Hockey semifinals and championship are held the following weekend. The NCAA Tournament selections get announced Mar. 5 and the NCAAs start Mar. 10. The NCAA Frozen Four is in St. Charles, Mo., Mar. 17 and 19.
SCOUTING NEW HAMPSHIRE
New Hampshire (7-11-1, 6-6-1 Hockey East) is 3-0-1 in its last four games, the Wildcats' first four-game unbeaten streak since last December. Since losing the first five games of the season by a combined score of 19-5, UNH has gone 7-6-1 and knocked off Yale's archrival, Harvard, 3-2 in overtime. Forward Jonna Curtis, the team's lone senior, leads the team in scoring (11-8-19). New Hampshire is 6-4-1 with Hilary Cashin in goal and 1-7-0 in the other eight games.
The Wildcats are coached by Hilary Witt, who was Yale's head coach for eight seasons (2002-03 through 2009-10) and was ECAC Hockey Coach of the Year in 2002-03. Witt was an assistant coach for Team USA at the 2014 Olympics, earning a silver medal.
Report by Sam Rubin '95 (firstname.lastname@example.org, Yale Sports Publicity)