Spartans Blank St. Michael's

SOUTH BURLINGTON, Vt. - Castleton scored a pair of power-play goals and added an empty-netter to earn a 3-0 win over St. Michael's at Cairns Arena on Friday. Brie Narodowy netted a pair of goals for the Spartans, while Paula Stephens finished with a 20-save shutout in net.

St. Michael's goalkeeper Abby Burke posted a 41-save performance in net, but it wasn't enough to keep Castleton off the board. The Spartans capitalized on two of their five power play chances to earn the key victory in the ECAC East playoff race.

The Spartans hopped on the scoreboard when Narodowy picked the upper left corner 6:14 into the contest after collecting a loose puck sitting in the slot during a power-play opportunity. Castleton outshot Saint Michael's 15-8 in the first period, with junior Fernanda Saavedra providing consecutive scoring chances while the Purple Knights were on the penalty kill during the closing minutes.

Narodowy extended the lead to 2-0 when she batted the puck inside the left post off a redirected shot during the power play at 5:27 of the second stanza. With 8:22 left, first-year Kimberly Gosselin had a chance to give the Spartans a three-goal lead with an open net, but Burke dove across the crease to snag the puck.

In the third period, Spartan junior Molly Howard picked off a pass deep in her offensive zone and fired a point-blank shot that Burke stopped. Saint Michael's could not solve Stephens, who made three-straight stops after Burke was pulled with 1:15 to go in the game. With the vacant net, Kilroy sealed the win after she let loose a shot from the neutral zone that bounced off a St. Michael's defender's stick and in for the score.

Castleton continues to hold onto second place in the ECAC East standings with the win. The Spartans move to 14-8-2 on the year, with a 9-4-2 mark in the conference. The squad will finish their regular season on Saturday when they travel to face No. 4 Norwich.