Pearl PPG Gives USM 2-1 Win Over Saint Michael's

Junior Julia Pearl scored the game-winning goal with 42 seconds to play as USM downed Saint Michael's 2-1 Friday at the USM Ice Arena.
Junior Julia Pearl scored the game-winning goal with 42 seconds to play as USM downed Saint Michael's 2-1 Friday at the USM Ice Arena.

            GORHAM, Maine -- Junior Julia Pearl (Essex Jct., Vt.) scored a power-play goal with 42 seconds remaining in regulation to give the University of Southern Maine Huskies a 2-1 win over the visiting Saint Michael's College Purple Knights in an ECAC Women's East game at the USM Ice Arena.

            The win lifts the Huskies to 9-6-1 overall and 6-1-0 in the league.  The Purple Knights slipped to 1-11-1 overall and remain winless in the league at 0-7-0.

            With overtime looming, Pearl took a pass from senior Erin Banfield (Montpelier, Vt.) and lifted a shot from the right post over a Saint Michael's rookie goaltender Abby Burke (Bedford, Mass.) for her fifth goal of the season.  Junior Talya Bent (Cranston, R.I.) picked up the other assist with a key play along the left wing board.

            Southern Maine took a 1-0 lead in the first period when Banfield converted a feed from freshman Ally Vanidestine (Bangor, Maine) into her team-leading 11th goal of the season at 19:18.  Bent triggered the play with a pass out of her defensive zone for the second assist.  Southern Maine held Saint Michael's without a shot on goal in the opening 20 minutes.

            The visitors got an equalizing goal in the middle period as rookie Erin Dwyer (Weymouth, Mass.) knocked a shot past USM junior goaltender Liz Bergstrom (Chanhassen, Minn.) for her third goal of the campaign at 12:25.  Sophomore Emily Loebs (Acton, Mass.) earned the lone assist.

            The Huskies turned up the offense pressure in the third period peppering Burke with 20 shots.  The rookie goaltender stopped everything until Pearl's game-winning tally.  Burke finished the game stopping 30 shots while Bergstrom recorded eight saves.

            Southern Maine hosts nationally ranked Norwich University on Saturday (1:00 p.m.).  Saint Michael's heads to Plymouth State University on Saturday (2:00 p.m.).

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