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UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Penn State women’s hockey team (6-11-8, 3-5-4 CHA) heads to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to take on the Robert Morris Colonials (14-6-3, 8-2-2 CHA) for a College Hockey America (CHA) weekend tilt, Jan. 26-27. Puck drop is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 26, and 3 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 27, at the 84 Lumber Arena.
Both games will be streamed via stretchinternet.com, but fans must have an account to access the video. Fans can also follow along with live stats on sidearmstats.com/rmu/whockey/.
LAST TIME OUT: SYRACUSE
Last weekend, Penn State hosted the Syracuse Orange at the Pegula Ice Arena following its 11-game road trip. The series featured the Orange capturing a pair of overtime victories over the Nittany Lions.
In the opener, the Nittany Lions rallied back from a two-goal deficit in the third period to force overtime, but Syracuse was able to capture a 3-2 win. For Penn State in the 3-2 loss, junior forward Meike Meilleur tallied her first career two-goal game.
In the finale, freshman forward Natalie Heising netted her team-leading eighth goal of the season in a 2-1 overtime loss.
For the Nittany Lions in net on the weekend, senior Hannah Ehresmann recorded 35 saves in the opener and 32 saves in finale.
LOOKING AT ROBERT MORRIS
The Robert Morris Colonials enter the series against Penn State following a series sweep at RIT, Jan. 19-20. In the opener, RMU won 12-1 and then captured a 4-3 overtime victory in the finale. On the year, RMU is 14-6-3 overall and 8-2-2 in conference action.
Offensively, three Colonials lead the CHA conference in points. Brittany Howard leads the conference in points (37), goals (18), and is tied for the lead in assists (19). Along with Howard, Jaycee Gebhard is tied for the lead in assists (19) and ranks second in points (27). In addition to Howard and Gebhard, Amber Rennie ranks third among the CHA leaders in points with 24.
In net, Elijah Milne-Price has a record of 13-4-3, has a goals-against average of 1.91, a save percentage of .921, has made 417 saves, and has two shutouts to her name.
SERIES HISTORY VS. ROBERT MORRIS
Robert Morris leads the all-time series against Penn State, 14-4-4.
Earlier this season, the two teams played to a pair of ties at Penn State, Oct. 28-29.
Among freshmen in the CHA, Heising is first in shots (82), power play assists (four), power play points (eight), and is tied for first in goals (eight), and points (16).
Heising is also tied for second in power play goals (four), is tied for third in assists (eight) and ranks fifth in faceoff wins with 120.
Along with Heising, Rankin is first in faceoff wins (320), is tied for third in goals (seven), is tied for fifth in points (13), is fifth in shots (62), and is tied for ninth in assists (six).
With eight conference games left for each team, Mercyhurst leads the CHA standings with 19 points. Robert Morris is currently in second place (18), followed by Syracuse (15) and Penn State (10).
Lindenwood and RIT round out the CHA standings with eight and two points, respectively.
PLAYING EXTRA TIME
The Nittany Lions have played 12 overtime contests this season. Penn State is 1-3-8 in overtime contests in 2017-18.
The NCAA record for overtime games in a season by a team is 15 (Boston U. - 2010).
Five Nittany Lions have combined for 10 awards from the College Hockey America (CHA) conference in 2017-18.
Freshmen Natalie Heising, Katie Rankin, and Sophie Slattery have all been named the CHA Rookie of the Week. In addition to the Rookie of the Week awards, Heising has been named the CHA Player of the Week and the CHA Rookie of the Month.
Along with the seven freshmen, the Penn State women’s hockey program welcomes three new faces to Hockey Valley.
Seven members of the Penn State women’s hockey program were named All-American Scholars for the 2016-17 season, as announced by American Hockey Coaches Association (AHCA).
Jeff Kampersal brings more than 20 years of experience as a head coach to Hockey Valley.
Prior to joining the Nittany Lions during the summer of 2017, Coach Kampersal was the head coach of the Princeton Tigers for 21 seasons. During his tenure at Princeton, Coach Kampersal tallied a record of 327-261-58.
Heading into the 2017-18 season, Kampersal ranks fifth in career victories among active women’s hockey coaches with 327, a total that ranks seventh all-time.
HEISING WINS GOLD
Natalie Heising and the U.S. Women’s National Under-18 Team defeated Canada, 3-1, to capture its third-straight IIHF Under-18 Women’s World Championship on Jan. 14, 2017.
Heising, a forward from Maple Grove, Minn., was named one of Team USA’s three top players of the tournament.
After finishing fourth in the 2016-17 College Hockey America (CHA) regular season standings, the Penn State women’s hockey team was selected fourth in the 2017-18 CHA preseason poll.
Penn State returns 17 letterwinners to the team for the 2017-18 season, including a pair of College Hockey America (CHA) All-Rookie Team honorees.
Madsen, a forward, played in all 35 games and netted 21 points (7g, 14a). Madsen’s season was highlighted with a three-assist outing in an 8-1 victory at Union (10/7).
On the blue line, McMillan recorded 11 points on four goals and seven assists in 35 games played.
The Penn State women’s hockey team tallied a pair of shutout victories in its series win at RIT on Dec. 1-2.
Penn State captured a 5-0 victory in the opener before tallying a 2-0 decision in the finale.
Sutton holds the major scoring program records by a defenseman with 15 goals, 35 assists, and 50 points.
On the power play, Sutton is tied for second in points (29), is second in assists (20), and is fourth in goals (nine).
Crow, a junior defenseman, served as an alternate captain last season. Crow is tied for second in goals by a defenseman (eight), is fourth in points by a defenseman (21), and is tied for fourth in assists by a defenseman (13).
Hardy, a senior forward, has played in 96 games and tallied 12 points on four goals and eight assists. Off the ice, Hardy serves as the vice president for the Penn State Student-Athlete Advisory Board (SAAB).
THE 2017-18 SLATE
Penn State is slated to play 34 contests during the 2017-18 regular season, which includes 15 games at the Pegula Ice Arena.
The 2017-18 regular season is highlighted by a trip to Minnesota Duluth (Sept. 29-30), hosting defending NCAA Champion Clarkson (Oct. 13-14), two series against Robert Morris (Oct. 28-29 & Jan. 26-27), a trip to Ohio State (Jan. 5-6), and hosting Princeton (Jan. 30).
The Nittany Lions take on the Princeton Tigers for their final non-conference matchup of the 2017-18 regular season at the Pegula Ice Arena on Tuesday, Jan. 30. Puck drop against the Tigers is slated for 5 p.m.