St. Cloud, Minn. - The St. Cloud State University women's hockey team started the 2013-14 season off Wednesday night hosting an exhibition game against the Japanese Olympic Team. The Huskies and Team Japan tied in overtime 3-3 but SCSU won in the shootout, 3-2.
Team Japan took the first lead of the game scoring on a power-play at the 9:38 mark of the first period by Kanae Aoki. Ayaka Toko and Yuka Hirano assisted Aoki on the goal. Japan came back just minutes later making it a 2-0 game scoring on another power-play goal this time by Ami Nakamura with assists from Hanae Kubo and Rui Ukita.
The Huskies found the break in the second period as they brought the game within one at the 3:55 mark with an even strength goal by senior assistant captain, Molli Mott. Junior Abby Ness and freshman Alexandra Makaric recorded the assists on the goal.
Later in the period at the 7:28 mark it was SCSU's junior Audrey Hanmer finding the top of the goal unassisted to tie the game up 2-2.
It was not until the 15:04 mark of the second period when the Huskies took their first lead of the game over Team Japan 3-2 with a goal by senior captain Amy Olson. Earning the assists on the goal were freshmen Jenna Redford and Payge Pena.
Midway through the third period Team Japan was able to get one past sophomore goalie Katie Fitzgerald to tie the game up 3-3. With the end of regulation the Huskies and Team Japan were still tied 3-3 sending it in to overtime.
The teams played a five-minute overtime with both defenses holding strong sending the game into a shootout. In the tenth round of the shootout it was sophomore Vanessa Spataro breaking the 2-2 tie with the winning goal for a 3-2 shootout victory for the Huskies.
Earning the start in goal for St. Cloud was junior Julie Friend as she recorded 16 saves, while Team Japan's Akane Konishi tallied 30 saves. Also seeing action for the Huskies in goal was Katie Fitzgerald as she posted 18 saves.
The Huskies will be back in action Saturday, September 28 for another exhibition game as they welcome the University of British Columbia to the Herb Brooks National Hockey Center. Game time is set for 7:07 p.m.