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Friday, February 6, 2009

Hockey Log

Jensen, Duncan recovering in stride
Line chart unruffled from the start of the week

As late as yesterday afternoon, a recuperating twosome of Jackie Duncan and Christie Jensen were eyeing the PC women’s practice from the solitary confines of the goal judges’ lair behind the home cage.

Implicit translation: neither of them is in a position to break their game time attire back out for this weekend’s series with Northeastern.

Head coach Bob Deraney had initially banked on Jensen swiftly restoring her standard form well in advance of tonight’s contest. Instead, ever since she was carelessly thrust into the boards by Connecticut’s Brittany Murphy last Saturday, her outlook has continuously swayed.

Less than six minutes after the hit, Jensen plunged right back into action to help commence a penalty kill, “…but that was it. She was concussed,” Deraney explained.

Promptly ruled out for last Sunday’s excursion across the western border, Jensen was replaced by two-way connoisseur Erin Normore on the second D-unit, complementing Amber Yung. Arianna Rigano, in turn, stepped up to plug the resultant void on the second forward line with Kate Bacon and Mari Pehkonen.

Judging by the jersey color distribution in yesterday’s tune-up, the same layout will be in place for at least this weekend.

Meantime, Deraney continues to safeguard the specifics to Duncan, who is going on three weeks away from action due to a spun out lower body ailment. The “day-to-day” tag has not changed since she was initially sidelined.

“We don’t want to rush her back too fast,” Deraney reasoned. “We want to make sure it heals.”

Barring any spontaneous symptomatic resurgences, Jensen, at the very least, ought to resume her standard regimen in the not-too-distant future.

“Everyone else is healthy, thank goodness,” Deraney added. “And, hey, we’re going to need everybody throughout our lineup because these games will continue to have this type of (playoff) intensity. And I feel very good that there are no weak links in our lineup. We just have some areas that are stronger than others.”

Arrow lands on Schelling
Over their last six outings, the Huskies have rotated their two regal goaltenders on a curious basis of every two games. Sophomore Leah Sulyma propped them up long enough to at least extract a shootout point out of Maine last Saturday, then submitted to Boston College, 3-1, in the Beanpot semifinal Tuesday on her own pond.

On this pace, rookie phenom Florence Schelling is due to assume crease duties tonight and possibly again tomorrow.

Friday night slights
Sooner, rather than later, the Friars would like to alter a trivial trend that has given all the luck to the visiting team in Friday games this season. They fell before Ohio State, 2-1, on October 3, St. Lawrence, 3-1, October 10, and Mercyhurst, 3-0, on November 21, all here at Schneider Arena. Conversely, they floored Robert Morris, 3-1, on November 7 and Maine, 4-1, on December 5 –both as a start to eventual road sweeps.

For the remaining three weeks of the regular season –this weekend with NU, next versus New Hampshire, and the following against BC- Providence shall don TGI white and pay a return visit to the opposing venue the subsequent Saturday, a day on which they are a cumulative 8-3-2.

Quick Feeds: Team captain Brittany Simpson sported her Skating Strides pink laces in practice yesterday. The WHEA’s three-year-old breast cancer charity puts in its annual appearance at Schneider Arena tonight…The Friar goaltenders and those of the opposition have each amassed precisely 782 saves over the first 28 games of the season…Only senior forward Ali Bielawski (+5) and junior defender Kacey Cedorchuk (+1) are in the black under Northeastern’s plus/minus heading. Another five Huskies boast an even rate while the rest read negative…The obsessive-defensive Huskies are a pristine 9-0-1 when scoring first, but 1-14-1 when admitting the first strike…Northeastern senior Missy Elumba was named one of 21 candidates for the 2009 BNY Mellon Hockey Humanitarian Award on Tuesday, as was PC men’s co-captain Kyle Laughlin. Elumba is one of five in consideration for the second consecutive season…Online video streaming will be offered for tonight’s game courtesy of friars.com.

Al Daniel can be reached at hockeyscribe@hotmail.com

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