By Lisa Wallace, The Canadian Press on January 23, 2024.
Ottawa’s Lexie Adzija scored an empty-net goal with 42.5 seconds remaining to give Ottawa’s Professional Women’s Hockey League team a 3-1 victory over Toronto on Tuesday night for its first home ice victory at TD Place.
Emily Clark and Brianne Jenner also scored for PWHL Ottawa (2-0-2-0), while Emerance Maschmeyer made 30 saves.
Brittany Howard scored the lone goal for PWHL Toronto (1-2-0-4). Erica Howe, who played part of her minor hockey career with the Ottawa Lady Senators, stopped 17 shots for her first hometown appearance.
This marked the second of five meetings between the two teams. Ottawa took the first game 5-1 on Jan. 13. Ottawa, holding a one-goal lead going into the third, managed to hold Toronto at bay despite Clark taking a slashing penalty with 2:16 remaining in regulation and Toronto pulling Howe for a two-player advantage.
Adzija scored the empty-netter to the thrill of the 6,316 fans on hand.
Trailing 2-1 in the second Toronto failed to capitalize on its two power-play chances. Ottawa had two great chances but Howe was solid keeping the game within reach for her teammates.
Ottawa opened the scoring, for the fourth straight time, at the five-minute mark when Clark beat Howe with a shot along the goal line. Toronto tied the game at 11:08 when Howard came across the blue line and wristed a shot past Maschmeyer.
Before Tuesday’s game, Ottawa was the only team that had not given up a first-period goal.
Jenner regained the lead less than a minute later taking a drop pass from Amanda Boulier for her first of the season.
Toronto boasts three Ottawa players in Samantha Cogan, Rebecca Leslie and Erica Howe. Coming into the game Ottawa leads the league in goals-per-game (3.0), while Toronto has the highest goals-against average (3.3).
Ottawa: Hosts Boston on Wednesday.
Toronto: Hosts New York on Friday.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Jan. 23, 2024.