HANOVER, N.H. — With time winding down in overtime on Saturday, senior Jenna Hobeika saved the Dartmouth women's hockey team from going on the road next weekend with a game-winning goal with 22 seconds left in the game. The score was tied, 1-1, with under a minute remaining in the extra stanza between the Big Green (18-8-2, 14-6-2 ECAC Hockey & 6-3-1 Ivy) and Brown (8-14-7, 5-13-4 ECAC Hockey & 2-8-0 Ivy). Dartmouth needed a victory to lock up the fourth seed in the ECAC Hockey Tournament.
The Big Green used the rarely seen tactic of pulling their goaltender, sophomore Lindsay Holdcroft (Pittsburgh, Pa.), despite the game being tied. Holdcroft left the ice with 58 seconds left and Dartmouth used the extra attacker to its advantage. After the Bears' Aubree Moore stopped a couple shots from the Big Green, Hobeika dumped the puck behind the net on the near side to senior Kelly Foley (South Boston, Mass.). Foley skated around the back of the net to the far side and slid the puck to the front of the crease. It slipped past three Brown defensemen, and Hobeika jammed it past a sliding Moore for the victory.
The victory moved Dartmouth into a tie with St. Lawrence for fourth in the conference, since the Saints lost earlier in the day at Cornell. The Big Green and St. Lawrence split their season series and had the same conference win total, so it came down to the third tiebreaker to find out which team would host the opening-round series between the fourth and fifth seeds. The Big Green came out on top of that tiebreaker, which was the combined win-loss record against the top four teams in the conference.
Brown and Dartmouth each had plenty of chances in the contest to score multiple goals, but both goaltenders played fantastic. Holdcroft made 28 saves, highlighted by 14 in the second stanza. Moore stopped 34 shots with 18 coming after the start of the third period.
The Bears got on the board first in the opening period. Lauren Veila took a shot from just outside the right face-off circle, and Holdcroft blocked the puck to the left side. Unfortunately for the Big Green, Brown's Laurie Jolin was standing there unchecked, and stuffed the puck into the net to give the team a 1-0 lead 3:38 into the first.
It took 14 minutes before Dartmouth evened the score. On their second power play of the games, the Big Green's Margaux Sharp (Carleton Place, Ontario) fired the puck from two strides inside the blue line that sailed right inside the far post. Moore could not get a clean look on the puck with Foley and a Brown defender standing in front of the crease.
Dartmouth finished 1-for-5 on the power play, while the Bears went 0-for-3. The Big Green finished with 36 shots compared to 29 for Brown.
The Big Green host St. Lawrence next weekend, Feb. 24-26, in the opening round of the ECAC Hockey Tournament. The best-of-three series will start on Friday, at 3:30 p.m. Game two will be on Saturday at 2 p.m., and game three if necessary will be on Sunday at 2 p.m.