Amherst College women’s hockey blanks rival Williams 2-0

By HANNAH BEVIS 

Staff Writer 

Published: 02-17-2023 10:23 PM

AMHERST — With just a pair of games left before the NESCAC tournament next weekend, the Amherst College women’s hockey team wanted to start off their series against Williams College with a bang. 

The Mammoths did just that, outshooting the Ephs 42-27 and rolling to a 2-0 victory. Natalie Stott stopped all 27 shots she faced, including a huge save on a shorthanded breakaway with 5:30 left in the game to preserve the shutout on the Mammoths’ Pink in the Rink night. It was the freshman’s ninth shutout of the season, the most shutouts of any goalie in Division 3 hockey this year.  

“It really means a lot to me. My mom was diagnosed with breast cancer over the summer, so it's a very like recent thing. Coming to this game, I knew there would be a lot of emotions around the game,” Stott said. “I was playing for her, obviously, so getting the win and the shutout for her feels really good.” 

The win moved Amherst’s record to 21-2-0 with one more regular season game against Williams before they host the NESCAC quarterfinals on Feb. 25. Their win against Williams on Friday and Hamilton’s loss to Middlebury secured the No. 1 seed for Amherst in the NESCAC tournament. 

After a recent loss and a less-than stellar game on Monday, the Mammoths wanted to get back to their style of play – working together and making simple and effective plays. 

“(We) definitely get back to the basics of hockey but especially our game. Back to playing our game, playing the way that makes us more successful. It's simple stuff, involves a lot of hard work and playing together,” Amherst head coach Jeff Matthews said. “Over the course of the season, different things can distract you. We just kind of refocused on what's most important.”

It took less than five minutes for the home team to get on the board. Carley Daly carried the puck around the net and into the high slot before dishing it off to Emily Hohmann, who unleashed a bomb from the point that flew past traffic and past Ephs goalie Erin Pye. 

“That was just a really hard-working play down low. I ended up losing control, but she was right on the blue line and there was great net-front presence which allowed the goalie not to see the puck as it came in, and Emily had a great shot low and at the net,” Daly said. 

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Both teams had opportunities on the power play, but the Mammoths’ and Ephs’ penalty kills were lights out all night long. Amherst shut down both of Williams’ chances and the Ephs stoned Amherst’s three power play opportunities. 

Amherst’s defense came alive in the second period. After Williams got off a couple of shots in the opening three minutes, they went 11 minutes without putting a shot on net, giving Amherst plenty of time to pepper Pye. Stott stopped all five she faced in the middle frame, and the Mammoths couldn’t solve Pye despite firing 12 shots at her. 

Williams came out possessed in the third, firing four shots at Stott and one that Leslie Schwartz had to block in the first four minutes. Amherst managed to settle down and control the next seven minutes of play, setting up golden opportunities that Pye was always there to save. 

Amherst had a late power play chance that got some good looks but couldn’t convert, and Williams’ Maddie Tix got a breakaway that Stott robbed with her glove. 

Amherst’s Avery Flynn  scored an empty-net goal to secure the win. 

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