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March 1, 2014
ROCHESTER, N.Y. - Penn State women's hockey had its second season as a varsity program cut short in the CHA First Round following a 3-0 loss to RIT Saturday afternoon at Ritter Arena. The Tigers took the opening series, 2-0, for a second straight time.
Sixth-seeded Penn State (4-29-3) fought third-seeded RIT for a second straight day, holding the Tigers coreless through the first 39:22 of the contest. An unfortunate deflection off a Nittany Lion defender allowed Melissa Bromley to score her fourth goal of the season late in the second period, which would be all the Tigers would need. RIT netminder Ali Binnington collected the shutout with 31 saves.
Penn State attempted the comeback in the third period, but a power-play goal in a 4-on-3 situation by Erin Zach doubled the RIT advantage with 11:53 remaining. Emilee Bullied's first goal of the season with 3:46 capped the final women's game at Ritter Arena as the Tigers improved to 10-0-2 all-time against Penn State.
The Nitttany Lions didn't go down without a fight as Nicole Paniccia (Oakville, Ont.) was pulled in favor of an extra attacker over the final 3:38 of the game. PSU fired six shots and two of which reached net, but Binnignton was there for the stop and earned the shutout. The Tigers move on to play second-seeded Robert Morris in the CHA Semifinals hosted by Mercyhurst.
Paniccia finished the game with 39 saves and had a total of 79 saves in the series, while allowing six goals in her final collegiate outing. Sophomores Jill Holdcroft (Pennsylvania Furnace, Pa.) and Shannon Yoxheimer (Jackson, Mich.) led the Nittany Lions with nine and six shots, respectively.
Saturday's game was also the final ones for Jenna Welch (Austin, Texas) and Taylor Gross (Colorado Springs, Colo.). Last night was the final game for Lindsay Reihl (Cheshire, Conn.) who missed Saturday due to an injury sustained in Friday's contest.
The final shot count was 42-31 in favor of the Tigers with RIT going 1-for-4 on the power play and Penn State going 0-for-3. The Nittany Lions won the faceoff battle, 39-31, and blocked 16 shots to RIT's 20.