Dave DeLuca/The Record file photo
It’s fair to say that the Buffalo State women’s hockey team (4-3-1, ECAC West 3-3) has faced some tough competition this season. A pair of losses to No. 3 Elmira (6-0-0 overall) this past weekend was a test for the Bengals that they didn’t pass.
But they didn’t exactly fail either.
The ECAC matchup on Friday was the closest game, a 2-1 final, between the two teams, but it is clear why Elmira is ranked third in the nation in D-III. The Bengals made it a close one as they took Elmira to overtime, however, they were unable to convert on any chances to take the lead in the game at any time.
“The first night was the best I have seen our team play this season. They played a strong defensive brand of hockey keeping Elmira’s opportunities to the perimeter,” Buffalo State head coach Candice Moxley said. “I felt as though we out-chanced them, but had a difficult time converting on our opportunities.”
When you play a talented team, there is little room for error. It starts with playing the right system, not making mistakes and then ultimately executing to have a chance against a highly talented team.
The Bengals played well enough to stay in it Friday, but Saturday was a different story. They couldn’t muster up another solid defensive performance against Elmira as the final score was 4-0.
“We were not executing at the level we needed to be to compete against a top team. They were able to capitalize,” Moxley said. “I think this was a great opportunity for our girls to learn and grow from in terms of their ability to compete and be competitive with the No. 3 team in the nation and what happens when we stray from our game.”
Buffalo State proved what they are capable of on Friday against one of the better teams in nation. The Elmira weekend closes up conference games until after the January break.
The Bengals will look to improve this weekend with a handful of non-conference matchups. They face Trinity College next weekend for a pair of games in Hartford.
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