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Women's ice hockey ties with Harvard, rallies for win over Dartmouth in unbeaten weekend

Princeton women's ice hockey players in black jerseys together in big group on bench.
Women’s hockey gathered on the bench. 
Photo courtesy of @PWIH/Twitter. 

Across two contests, the No. 15 Princeton women’s ice hockey team (4–3–1 overall, 2–3–1 ECAC) played an unbeaten weekend, settling for a tie against Harvard (0–6–1, 0–6–1) and defeating Dartmouth (2–5–1, 1–5–1).

Princeton and Harvard draw in frustrating Friday night contest


Cheered on by a crowd of 745 fans, the Tigers and Harvard Crimson fought for 65 minutes without a victor, tying 1–1 in overtime.

Despite outshooting winless Harvard 31–20, Princeton just couldn’t strike the decisive final blow, controlling possession for most of the overtime period with nothing to show for it in the end. Head Coach Cara Morey attested to inconsistency as the main factor in the match’s result. 

“I think it was an inconsistency from shift to shift, period to period,” Morey told The Daily Princetonian. “And we need to be better than that.”

Entering with five losses in as many games, the Crimson were hungry for a win. Coming out strong early on, Harvard took a 1–0 lead eight minutes into the first period. Assisted by Harvard forward Brooke Manning, forward Ellie Bayard put a shot past first-year goalie Uma Corniea. 

Knowing they needed to jump on the Crimson in the second period, the Tigers netted the equalizer with a goal from sophomore forward Issy Wunder. Assisted by senior forward Sarah Fillier, the tying goal came with just over seven and a half minutes remaining in the period. 

Princeton pushed for the rest of the second and third periods, outshooting Harvard 22–10 over the final 40 minutes of regulation. However, goalie Alex Pellicci stood strong for Harvard, withstanding the Tigers’ offense and bringing the game into overtime.


In the final five minutes, Princeton fired eight shots, but only one was on target,  reflective of the greater trend Morey mentioned of taking too many shots that don’t reach the net. However, Harvard couldn’t do much better, mustering two shots on goal, both saved by Corniea.

Looking back at the result of this game, sophomore forward Sarah Paul stated that it gave the team a chance “to prove to each other that we can bounce back after a performance that we weren’t looking for.”

While a disappointing result, Morey mentioned the lessons that come from it, discussing the relative youth of the team and the team’s trajectory of development. 

“This season, I mean, we’re playing with a lot of young players. If you looked at our starting lineup [Saturday], they were all first and second-year players, every single one… There’s a lot of young mistakes happening,” she said. 

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This relative youth of the team, while presenting challenges early on, will only serve to strengthen the Tigers as the season progresses.

Inspired by rogue fish, Tigers overcome inconsistency to take a 5-2 win over Dartmouth

The Tigers looked to bounce back quickly, starting the second game of the weekend with some extra juice. Controlling the puck for most of the first ten minutes, Princeton pressed the Dartmouth defense, albeit with no goals to show for the effort.

As Dartmouth gained footing, possession became more even, and the Big Green traded blows with the Tigers. Princeton appeared to be gaining momentum towards the end of the first period, but Dartmouth’s defense held strong. The two sides headed into the first intermission with the score knotted at zero, despite Princeton holding a 12–7 advantage in shots at the goal.

The tides turned early in the second period, as Dartmouth netted a goal just under four minutes into the period, courtesy of defenseman Izee Powell. However, Princeton was not to be deterred, as slightly over a minute later, Paul connected on a shot from the middle of the zone to tie it up one to one.

After this, a fish was thrown onto the ice from the crowd, as an overjoyed fan uncovered a new form of celebration. 

“Dartmouth has a tradition where they throw tennis balls onto the ice after they score their first goal against us,” said Aiden Kaufman ’26, the videographer for an Instagram post about the fish conspirators, explained to the ‘Prince.’ “Considering this, we thought our games needed more excitement.” 

“The fish put a smile on my team’s face and my face, so that was cool,” Paul added. "I’ve never had something happen like that before and it was funny.” 

While Kaufman appears to be connected to the fish thrower, the exact individual’s identity remains a mystery.

“Fish man would like to remain anonymous,” Kaufman said. “Fish man is the spirit of Princeton. In many ways, we’re all affiliated with him.”

In what became a metaphor for the third period for Princeton, Kaufman stated that “the fish slid gracefully and remained on the ice despite a Dartmouth player’s attempt to whack it away.”

Nearly eleven minutes into the second, junior defender Emma Dornseif was called for a five-minute major boarding penalty, giving the Big Green a long power play that turned into a 5-on-3 when senior forward Catherine Kerin was called for a hooking penalty. With the two person advantage, the Big Green wasted no time, scoring after winning the face-off just three seconds into the power play.

Down 2–1, the Tigers persisted. They entered the third period as a squad on a mission, equalizing the game two for two on a power-play goal by Wunder from close range, and then taking a 3–2 lead on sophomore forward Jane Kuehl's missile from the left side.

These two quick goals turned the momentum of the game on its head, and Morey stated that, “I’m mostly proud the [team] took that attitude into the third and never quit, even though we were down… that’s hard to come back from, but they did a good job.”

Dartmouth still pushed hard, but junior goalie Jennifer Olnowich stayed strong, notably deflecting two consecutive shots from point-blank range with just over nine minutes left.

Speaking about Olnowich and Corneia, who saved 19 of 20 shots on Friday, Morey commented that she “thought both goalies battled and did what they needed to do for us to have a chance to win those games.”

The third period continued to be all Tigers, as senior forward Annie Kuehl tapped in a fourth goal with just over seven minutes remaining. In the final minute of a five-minute major elbowing penalty for Dartmouth, first-year defensemen Maggie Johnson added one more goal for good measure, giving the Tigers a 5–2 lead that they would take to the final buzzer.

Paul ascribed the win today to a strong team culture, which she categorized as “ubuntu. So it’s ‘we are’ instead of ‘I am.’ So doing it for something bigger than yourself, for each other, for Princeton hockey.” 

This team spirit of selflessness was echoed by Morey, who stressed the importance of rallying together, especially when senior forward Sarah Fillier — the team’s most successful player — was not present.

“I think today it’s hard when you’re missing your best player, and so they all rise up and do more than what’s normally expected of them and really come together as a group,” Morey said. 

After rising to the challenge against Dartmouth, the Tigers are rolling with positive energy into their next slate of games, while not ignoring what needs to be improved as the season progresses.

“We’re going to take the win, take the energy and the positivity and… take a look at what we can change and what else we can improve on,” Paul concluded.

Next up for the Tigers is a non-conference, two-game home set against Mercyhurst (5–8–1 overall, 2–2–0 College Hockey America), next Friday and Saturday at 3:00 and 1:00 PM, respectively.

Max Hines is a contributing writer to the Sports section of the ‘Prince.’ Please send corrections to corrections[at]