Feb. 23, 2009
Rutland, VT - Sophomore forward Rachel Sousa (Woburn, MA) registered her first collegiate hat trick and added an assist to lead the University of Massachusetts Boston women's ice hockey team over host Castleton State College, 5-2, tonight in an Eastern College Athletic Conference contest at the Rutland Regional Fieldhouse. The Beacons improve to 13-10-2 overall and 12-6-2 in league play to ensure their fourth straight winning season, while the Spartans fall to 6-19-0 and 6-15-0.
UMB will take the fourth seed in the upcoming ECAC East Tournament, hosting fifth seed Salve Regina University on Saturday, February 28 at 2:00 p.m. at the Clark Athletic Center. Castleton will be the eighth seed and will travel to Rye, NY to take on top-seed Manhattanville College on February 28.
Sousa becomes the fourth UMass Boston player to achieve the feat this season and the eighth player in school-history to net at least three goals in a game.
Junior forward Katelyn Lajoie (Marlboro, MA) staked the Beacons to an early 1-0 lead, netting her sixth of the season just 59 seconds into the contest off an assist from sophomore forward Kristen Smith (Beavercreek, OH). Sousa scored 12 minutes later, assisted by classmate Katie Kirwan (Centerville, MA) and junior forward Katelyn Corsino (Belmont, MA) to make it 2-0.
Castleton's Amy Costa (Bristol, RI) sliced the lead in half with 1:09 remaining in the second period, potting her team-leading 10th goal of the season off assists from sophomore Laura Szwed (White Lake, MI) and senior defenseman Kayla Twigge (Almonte, ONT).
Sousa answered with back-to-back goals just 50 seconds apart midway through the third period to seal the win for UMass Boston. Her third tally of the night came at 10:23 of the third period on the power play and was assisted by sophomore forward Lauren Duran (Woburn, MA) and junior forward Maria Nasta (Andover, MA). The helper for Nasta gives her a school-record 27 on the season, breaking Andrea Ciarletta's (2003-07) mark from 2003-04. Sophomore defenseman Jazz Webber (Winslow, ME) made it 5-1 with 5:13 remaining, before junior forward Adrianna Riggio (Buffalo, NY) scored the final goal of the game with just over one minute left to make it 5-2.
Freshman goaltender Leah Hallett (Rocky Hill, CT) earned the win in between the pipes for the Beacons, stopping 28 shots. Sophomore Amanda Hoy (Brockport, NY) stopped 26 shots in the loss for Castleton.