The Mercyhurst women’s hockey team advanced to the Frozen Four after defeating Cornell University with a 3-2 score on March 15.
Out of these three goals scored, two points were made on a power play. This put the Lakers in third place for best power plays.
The Lakers were ranked the seventh seed going into the NCAA Frozen Four and played against the third seed Clarkson University on Friday, March 21.
“Making it to the frozen four is an indescribable feeling that I cannot put into words. Hearing our name being in the NCAA tournament with the final eight is an accomplishment of its own; winning that final eightgame is one of the best feelings I have had in my hockey career and would not trade it for the world,” senior Christie Cicero said.
Although falling to Clarkson, 5-1, the Lakers still finished their season with a record of 24-9-4.
“Regardless who is on our team, we always strive for excellence and set the highest goals for our teams, so essentially, one of our goals was to make it the NCAA Frozen Four,” Head Coach Michael Sisti said.
The Laker’s end of the season record for home games was 12-4-3 and away games was 12-4-1.
“We have gone through extreme pushes as a group and from the beginning to the end of the year it is night and day. We struggled in September and October, but we knew what goals we needed and wanted to accomplish, and the struggles could not happen any longer,” Cicero said.
Sisti commented on the team’s performance throughout the season saying, “We had a young team that needed to learn how to compete at this level, so all year we continued to improve in key areas of our game and the players realized why we were working so intensely.”
Another ranking for the Lakers was that they were ranked sixth in the final USCHO.com Division I women’s hockey poll.
“I think that being ranked six out of seven is a blessing. I, personally, love to be the “underdog” and take great pride when teams are “shocked” or “surprised” we beat them. We are sometimes an underrated team, and that makes our wins that much better because we know we are better than how people may write us off” Cicero said.
This season’s end was bittersweet for the women’s hockey team as they overcame much adversity and many challenges to achieve a successful season.
“I am very proud of my staff and players for being undeterred in our commitment to win our league and make the NCAA tournament. We will miss our three seniors and appreciate everything they have done to help our program. I also, appreciate all our loyal fans who have supported us in many ways over the years,” Sisti said.
Cicero is one of the seniors who will be leaving Mercyhurst. She is sure that the team’s accomplishments will be a stepping stone for teams in the future.
“We have come so far and have achieved more than any one thought we could. I personally do not regret a single decision here, and am happy I can say my career ended at the Frozen Four.”
“Everything during my senior year has had an extra special feeling to me, and this just topped off my career: last weekend of hockey and I can play on the biggest stage in college. It doesn’t get any better than that,” Cicero said.