Two former Nichols School captains will be in the lineup today for Colgate University (34-5-1) against Clarkson (35-4-1) in the NCAA Women's Ice Hockey championship game at Ridder Arena in Minneapolis. Ridder is the hockey home of the Minnesota women's team. Clarkson is the defending national champion.
Junior defender Olivia Zafuto and senior forward Annika Zalewski are the former Vikings who will play for the Raiders in the championship game.
Zafuto, who played youth hockey for the Niagara Junior Purple Eagles, has scored 11 goals, 21 assists for 32 points in 40 games for Colgate this season. She has 25 goals and 69 points in her college career.
Zalewski is from New Hartford in the Utica area but played here for the Buffalo Bisons and at Nichols. She is Colgate's captain. Zalewski, who has two brothers who played in the NHL, has 38 goals and 84 points in her career at Colgate. This season she has eight goals and 15 assists this season.
Colgate's coach Greg Fargo was named national Coach of the Year. A native of Kingston, Ontario, Fargo was an assistant coach at Canisius after his career as a player at Elmira College.
It will be the fourth meeting of the season between Colgate and Clarkson, both members of the ECAC league. Colgate won at Clarkson but lost the two most recent meetings including the championship game of the ECAC playoffs. The game will be shown live on the Big 10 Network.
Colgate earned a place in the final with double-overtime win over Wisconsin on Friday while Clarkson won its semifinal
Colgate 18, Canisius 5: The Raiders continued to dominate Canisius in the sport. The Golden Griffins are 0-14 all-time against Colgate after Saturday's loss at Andy Kerr Stadium in Hamilton. It was the first meeting of the two since 2009.
Griffin Brown scored seven goals, one of seven players with seven or more points for Colgate (5-3).
Sophomore Mathieu Boissonneault scored his first career hat trick for Canisius. Senior Connor Kearnan had a goal and three assists for the Griffs (3-2).
St. Bonaventure 8, North Carolina A&T 7: Jeff Palczewski (Orchard Park) led off the ninth inning with a single, his third hit of the game, and ended up scoring on a throwing error for the winning run. The Bonnies overcame a 6-3 deficit with four runs in the sixth inning with a leadoff hit by Palczewski starting the rally. Ryan MacCarrick hit a two-run homer for Bona in the first.
West Virginia 2, Canisius 0: Chase Illig hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the first and that gave sophomore right-hander Alex Manoah the advantage in a pitching duel with senior right-hander Charlie Sobieraski (Lockport) of Canisius (10-6).
Sobieraski allowed only four hits over seven innings but Illig's blast was enough for the Mountaineers (9-8). The game was played in sub-30-degree weather in Morgantown, W.Va., and interupted for 34 minute in the third inning because of heavy snowfall.
Manoah allowed three hits to Canisius over seven innings.
The final game of the three-game series is scheduled for 1 p.m. today.
Michigan State 5, Niagara 1: The Spartans (6-11) scored twice in the first inning and built a five-run advantage through seven on the way to their victory over the Purple Eagles (3-10) in the third game of their series at McLane Stadium in East Lansing, Mich. The Spartans have won two of three against Niagara with the series finale scheduled for 1 p.m. today.
Niagara had six hits but left 12 runners in base. Peter Battaglia had two hits and an RBI and Benny Serrano had two hits for NU.. Michael Gabriele had a double for the Purple Easgles,
Army 3, UB 1; Quinnipiac 11, UB 0: Courtney Springman of the Black Knights pitched a four hitter against the Bulls in the USF Tournament in Clearwater, Fla. Then Casey Herzog of Quinnipiac limited the Bulls to one hit, a fourth-inning double by Jenelle Martinez.
Towson 11, Canisius 0 (5 inns.); UNC Greensboro 9, Canisius 1 (6 inns): The Golden Griffins (3-17) gave up two home runs in each game in Greensboro, N.C. The Griffs will face Towson (19-3) again Sunday in their final game of the weekend.
Belmont 8, St. Bonaventure 0 (5 inns.); Ball State 15, St. Bonaventure 0 (5 inns).: The Bonnies were no-hit by two Ball State pitchers after they were limited to three hits in their first game on Saturday in the Belmont-Tennessee State Invitational in Nashville, Tenn.
Bryant 18, Niagara 8: Jess Demeo scored eight times and had an assist and Caitlin Breglia had five goals and an assist for the visiting Bulldogs (3-3). Rachel MacCheyne had three goals and Shea Swartwout added a pair of tallies for the Purple Eagles (3-5).
Lancaster native Kristen Romano swam a 48.57 anchor leg in the 400-yard freestyle relay for Ohio State in the preliminaries of the NCAA championships. The Buckeyes had the 11th-fastest time and did not make the final, but swam in the consolation final Saturday night.