Klaus' record-setting hat trick lifts women's ice hockey

MANCHESTER, N.H. – Junior defenseman Megan Klaus (State College, Pa.) recorded the fastest hat trick in the history of the Saint Anselm College women's ice hockey team, propelling the Hawks to a 5-2 victory over Sacred Heart University on Friday at Sullivan Arena.

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The Hawks improve to 21-2-1 overall on the season, moving to 14-0-1 against New England Women's Hockey Alliance opponents. Sacred Heart, the second place team in the NEWHA, drops to 18-6-4 on the year and to 7-3-3 against league foes. Saint Anselm wrapped up the NEWHA Regular Season Championship in its previous contest.

Klaus is the second Hawks student-athlete in as many games to net a hat trick as freshman Amanda Nylander (Hanover, Minn.) accomplished the feat last Saturday against Saint Michael's. Her hat trick, accomplished in only 18:49, is the fastest in team history. Klaus also set up a first period tally by sophomore Mary Lambert (Plaistow, N.H.), giving her four points in the game's first period.

Klaus posted back-to-back goals to open the scoring in the game, striking first only 2:36 into the contest by taking the puck coast-to-cast and burying it past Sacred Heart backstop Sarah Erban. Her second goal of the contest came just under three minutes later as she fired a powerful shot home from the left point, creating a two-goal bulge for the hosts.

Lambert made it 3-0 for the Hawks only 7:38 into the game, tipping home a heavy Klaus shot from the right point. For Lambert, it was her fourth goal of the season and freshman Blue Fancy (Orleans, Mass.) secured her first career assist on the play.

Freshman Kelly Golini (Tewksbury, Mass.) countered a power play goal from Sacred Heart's Anna Klein with her 12th goal of the season with 5:03 to go in the first period, building up a 4-1 lead for Saint Anselm. With the Hawks on the power play, Erban was able to turn away a powerful shot from sophomore Gabby Monaco (La Verne, Calif.), but Golini was there for the rebound.

Klaus capped the hat trick with 1:11 remaining in the first period, beating Erban five-hole on a low line drive fired toward net from the left point. For the Hawks, they carried a first period lead of 5-1 into the locker room and held a slight edge in total shots, 11-to-10. The final goal by Klaus chased Erban from the game.

Haley Payne capped the scoring in the third period, posting Sacred Heart's second goal of the contest only 3:35 into the stanza.

The Pioneers' backup netminder, Frankie Sanchez, performed admirably in relief, making 19 saves on all 19 shots faced. Erban made six stops on 11 shots, drawing the loss. Sophomore Michaela Kane (Haverhill, Mass.) earned the win in goal, making a career-high 33 saves on 35 shots to improve to 7-0-0 on the season.

Saint Anselm was 1-for-2 on the power play while Sacred Heart converted two of its three extra-skater opportunities.

On Saturday, the Hawks will honor and recognize two of its three-person senior class on Senior Day. Saint Anselm will then take on Sacred Heart in its regular-season home finale at 1 p.m. in Sullivan Arena.