The women's hockey team suffered a heartbreaking Senior Day defeat, losing a 3-1 lead to fall to Colgate, 4-3, in the squad's final home game of the season on Saturday.
"It's always tough to lose on senior night," said Sasha Van Muyen '10. "We were really hoping we could pull out a win here, but it is what it is. We played our hearts out. You can't ask for much more than that."
A day earlier, the Bears were blanked by Cornell, 4-0. With two games left, Brown's record stands at 2-20-4 overall and 0-17-3 in ECAC Hockey play.
Cornell 4, Brown 0
On Friday, the Bears gave the ECAC-leading Big Red (13-8-6, 12-2-6) a first-period fight. Bruno generated its best scoring opportunity four minutes in when a shot by Vika Mykolenko '12 was deflected and landed on top of the net. Cornell posted only an 11-6 advantage in shots that period, but scored a late goal to go into intermission with a 1-0 lead.
Brown lost blueliner Paige Pyett '12 in the closing seconds of the first period, and Cornell took control of the remainder of the game. The Big Red scored two goals in a one-minute span early in the second to pull away.
"Every game — we're very young and we let up those two quick goals that just bury us," said Head Coach Digit Murphy. "You look at the one that landed on top of the net with Vika, it's like, you just can't get a break. All that stuff just adds up."
Cornell tacked on a third-period goal. Katie Jamieson '13 made 36 saves, but the Bears totaled only 15 shots.
"We need to take control of our destiny earlier and make the most of our opportunities," Murphy said. "I thought our first period was very good, yet we still come out losing 1-0. I think we've got to come out strong in the first period and then take it from there. That's how we win."
Colgate 4, Brown 3
On Saturday, Bruno started strong but could not maintain the lead, as Katie Stewart scored all four of the goals for Colgate (10-18-4, 6-10-4).
Playing in front of one of their largest crowds of the season and the Brown Band at Meehan Auditorium, the Bears came out energized, scoring twice in a 1:03 span to take a 2-0 lead into the first intermission. With 10:03 left, Alena Polenska '13 scored on a feed from Laurie Jolin '13, with each player finishing the game at 10 points on the season, which is tops on the team. Soon after, Van Muyen doubled Bruno's lead with her team-leading sixth goal.
Nicole Brown '10 "took a nice shot from that point that hit the post," Van Muyen said. "I was just trying to get the puck to the net, and there was a big scramble, and I managed to get it over the line just enough for the refs to call it a goal."
The Raiders struck back in the second period, as Stewart notched a hat trick in a 13-minute span. The first goal came on a miscue by the Bears. Jamieson went behind the net to stop the puck, but Colgate's Beth Rotenberg beat Bruno to the puck and fed Stewart, who put the Raiders on the board five minutes into the period.
The Bears appeared to deflate after surrendering the goal, as Colgate roared to 16-9 advantage in shots in the middle frame. The Bears appeared to have stopped the bleeding five minutes after the goal, making quick work of a power play as Jenna Dancewicz '11 scored off assists by Jolin and Polenska to take a 3-1 lead.
But Stewart scored twice more in the second to tie the game, both goals coming after Bruno took penalties to kill power plays.
"You don't take a penalty when you're on a power play," Murphy said. "It's those little things, those mental mistakes — we beat ourselves there."
Stewart scored 2:50 into the third period on a nifty wraparound to give the Raiders a 4-3 lead they would not relinquish.
"The miscommunication with Jamieson behind the net and not picking up hurt us, but I thought that was the only mistake we made from a coverage perspective," Murphy said. "They had three individual efforts that beat us. Those two shots that (Stewart) took, you can't stop that, and then the wraparound."
Brown pulled Jamieson, who finished with 33 saves, for an extra attacker with 2:31 left and generated heavy pressure, but could not notch the equalizer.
"That was really tough," Van Muyen said. "We had a couple really good chances in front. I wish we could have buried them and gotten the tie or a win out of it, but we played our hearts out, and I can't ask my teammates to do much more than that."
A ceremony after the game honored the senior class of , Erin Connors '10, Kathleen Surbey '10, Brown and Van Muyen. The Bears will have two more shots to close out the season with an ECAC win when they hit the road to face Princeton (12-11-4, 10-6-4) on Friday and Quinnipiac (16-8-8, 9-4-7) on Saturday.
"I think we just have to work hard," Van Muyen said. "We need to play a little more soundly defensively, and then just bury our chances when we get them. And if the other team scores a goal, not deflate, just keep going the way we were going."