Women's Hockey Draws Manhattanville In NCAA Quarters

March 4, 2007

Middlebury will makes its sixth consecutive appearance in the NCAA Tournament on Friday, March 9th when they host Manhattanville at 7:00 p.m. This will be the third straight NCAA quarterfinal match-up between the two schools, with the Panthers advancing 3-2 in overtime in '05 and 4-3 a year ago. Middlebury leads the all-time series between the schools, 3-2.

Middlebury earned an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament after falling 2-1 in triple overtime to Amherst in the NESCAC Championship game. The Panthers are now 11-3 overall in NESCAC Tournament play.

Middlebury enters the game as the three-time defending NCAA Champions with a record of 9-2 in NCAA play since the tournament's inception in '02. Prior to the NCAA Tournament, Middlebury captured the '00 and '01 AWCHA National Championships.

Middlebury has an amazing 279-34-11 (.878) record over the past 12 seasons, with head coach Bill Mandigo sporting a 350-89-12 (.789) record in his 19th season at the helm of the program. His 350 wins are more than any other coach in any division in the history of women's college hockey.

The Panthers enter the game with a 21-3-2 overall record, after going 14-0-2 in NESCAC play. The offense ranks seventh in the nation, scoring 4.12 goals/game, while the defense allows 1.42 goals/game, placing them fourth among their Division III opponents. The special teams have been impressive, with Middlebury's penalty kill ranked seventh (.908) and its power play fifth-best (.233).

Leading the team in scoring this season is NESCAC Player of the Year, Abby Kurtz-Phelan. The senior is ranked fourth nationally with 1.80 points and 1.05 assists/game. She has 15 goals and 21 assists for 36 points in 20 games played. She is tied for the team-lead with six power play goals, while ranking second with five game-winners. Kurtz-Phelan now has 99 career points in 97 games played.

Senior Shannon Sylvester (14-18-32), sophomore Annmarie Cellino (13-18-31), senior Shannon Tarrant (9-18-27) and junior Karen Levin (10-14-24) round out the leading scorers.

Junior Angie Todd and first-year netminder Lani Wright have split time in goal this season. Todd is 9-1-2 with a 1.10 GAA (3rd nationally) and a .936 save percentage (8th nationally). Wright has an 11-2 record with a 1.70 GAA (10th nationally) and a .912 save percentage.

Manhattanville earned its way into the tourney with a 3-2 win over R.I.T. in the ECAC East title game. The Valiants sport a 19-7-1 overall record, having gone 15-4 in ECAC East play.

Junior Amanda Nonis leads the team in scoring with 16 goals and 16 assists for 32 points. Sophomore Alex Blackwell (16-15-31) is tied for the team-lead with six power play goals, while owning a team-high four game-winners. Juniors Jamie Longo (13-18-31), Cory Alcorn (13-9-22) and Jessica Zimmerman (9-13-22) round out the leading scorers.

Sophomore Karine Turmel is 11-5-1 with a 2.05 GAA in net, while rookie Sophia Kokkonis is 7-2 with a 1.22 GAA.

2007 NCAA Women's Hockey Tournament

Quarterfinals, Friday, March 9th
Manhattanville (19-7-1) @ Middlebury (21-3-2) - 7:00
Quarterfinals, Saturday, March 10th
Amherst (19-5-3) @ R.I.T. (22-3-2) - 7:00 p.m.
Wis.-Stevens Point (18-6-2) @ Gustavus Adolphus (25-2) - 2:00 p.m.

Semifinals, Friday, March 16th - Plattsburgh
Plattsburgh (25-0-2) vs. Amherst/R.I.T. winner
Manhattanville/Middlebury winner vs. Wis.-Stevens Point/Gustavus Adolphus winner

Championship, Saturday, March 17th - site TBA