The Gustavus women’s hockey team will face 2010 NCAA Runner-up Norwich University on Friday, March 18 at 2:30 pm (CDT) in a NCAA Division III Championship Semifinal game in Rochester, New York. The Gusties (22-3-3), who are making their second consecutive appearance in the NCAA Championship Finals, will be facing Norwich (23-4-1) for the first time in the program’s history. The tournament is being hosted by Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT), which will play Middlebury College in the other semifinal game on Friday evening. The NCAA Championship will conclude on Saturday with the third place game at 2:30 (CDT) and the championship game at 7 pm.
There will be a live videostream of all four games during the weekend and live statistics will be available as well. A link to both will be posted as soon as they are available.
Tickets go on sale Tuesday at the Gordon Field House box office at 10 a.m. Tickets can be purchased in person, by phone (585) 475-4121, or at ticketmaster com. Single-day (Friday or Saturday) ticket prices are $12 for adults, $6 for students, and $3 for children under 12. Weekend passes (all four games) are $18 for adults, $8 for students, and $5 for children under 12.
Gustavus advanced to the finals by defeating UW-River Falls 4-1 in River Falls in first round action last Friday night. Middlebury advanced by defeating Manhattanville 1-0 on Saturday afternoon and then RIT moved on with a 10-1 win over Adrian on Saturday night. Norwich received a bye into the finals and did not play last weekend.
This is the eighth consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance for the Gusties, who hosted the NCAA Women’s Division III Hockey Championship last March. Coach Mike Carroll’s squad is making its fifth NCAA Finals appearance in the 11-year history of the NCAA Women’s Division III Hockey Championship. The Gusties nine NCAA Tournament appearances are tied for first all-time with Middlebury College, which is also in this year’s tournament. Gustavus’ five Championship Finals appearances rank third all-time behind Middlebury and Elmira who are tied for first with six.
Gustavus (22-3-3) punched its ticket to the finals with a 4-1 win over UW-River Falls. The Gusties enter the weekend with the longest unbeaten streak in Division III at 14 straight. Since losing two of their three games in December, the Gusties have compiled a mark of 15-1-3 the rest of the way. Norwich (23-4-1) received a bye into the semifinals. The Cadets were knocked off by Manhattanville in the ECAC East Championship game on March 6. Norwich, which had a 17-game unbeaten streak snapped in its loss to Manhattanville, received an at-large bid to the tournament. The Gusties and Cadets both advanced to the NCAA Championship Finals last year, but did not play each other as Gustavus faced eventual national champion Amherst (4-0 loss) in the semifinals and Elmira (4-1 loss) in the third place game, while Norwich faced Elmira (3-2 win) in the semifinals and Amherst (7-2 loss) in the championship game.
The Gusties have allowed just 27 goals in 28 games this season, second fewest nationally behind RIT. In goal, junior Danielle Justice is 18-3-3 with a 1.00 goals against average, and .943 save percentage. She is second nationally in goals against average, and fourth in save percentage. Offensively, Lindsey Hjelm leads the way with 29 points on 11 goals and 18 assists. Allie Schwab leads the Gusties with 14 goals, wile Amanda Cartony is right behind with 13.
The Cadets are the second highest scoring team in the nation, right behind RIT. Senior Sophie Leclerc leads the nation with 48 points on 24 goals and 24 assists, while junior Julie Fortier is third nationally with 40 points on 20 goals and 20 assists. Norwich has five players with at least 30 points and 16 in double figures. In goal, Cindy Fortin is 16-2-0 with a 1.61 goals against average, and .909 save percentage.
2011 NCAA Division III Women’s Ice Hockey Championship
Rochester Institute of Technology – Rochester, New York
Friday, March 18 – National Semifinals
#5 Norwich (23-4-1) vs. #6 Gustavus Adolphus (22-3-3) – 2:30 p.m. (CDT)
#1 RIT (25-1-2) vs. #3 Middlebury (22-4-1) – 6:00 p.m. (CDT)
Saturday, March 19
Third Place Game – 2:30 p.m. (CDT)
Championship Game – 6:00 p.m. (CDT)