BLAINE, Minn. (Blugolds.com) - The UW-Eau Claire women's hockey team had a tough time stopping Bethel University (Minn.) in its season-opener tonight, as the Royals defeated the Blugolds 7-0.
The Blugolds played a well-fought game, but they could not seem to score throughout the game. Despite the goal differential, the Blugolds only had one shot fewer than the Royals, with 35 shots on goal to Bethel's 36. Blugold forward Abbie Hawthorne (Sr.-Brookfield, Wis./Central) led the Blugolds with five shots, while Hadley Cookson (Fr.-Shorewood, Minn./Minnetonka) and Nikki Kothenbeutel (Jr.-Sauk Rapids, Minn.) tied for second most, with four shots apiece.
The Royals started the scoring early, when Caroline Kivisto found the back of the net just before the seventh minute of the first period. This was only the beginning of Kivisto's night, as she managed to score on two more occasions, recording a hat trick. Bethel's Christina Masten also secured a hat-trick.
The Blugolds will look for redemption tomorrow night, as they get another chance against the Royals, but this time it will be at Hobbs Ice Center in Eau Claire. The game is Parents Day for Eau Claire and will begin at 2 p.m.