Beauts ring in the new year with home series against ‘Caps
The Buffalo Beauts will ring in the New Year with their first series against the Minnesota Whitecaps back in the friendly confines of Northtown Center. The first game of the weekend will be on Saturday at 7 p.m. EST while the puck will drop on Sunday at 1 p.m. EST.
The last time these two teams met was back in February 2022, when the Beauts split the series with the ‘Caps. Minnesota scored eight goals for an 8-1 win in the first contest before Buffalo roared back with a six-goal performance, picking up a 6-2 victory.
Both teams are entering this weekend in quite different places. Minnesota has won four of its last six contests, sweeping its series against Metropolitan and splitting its last two weekends against the Force and Whale. With ten games in the books this year, the ‘Caps are sitting comfortably in third place in the PHF standings with 14 points.
Buffalo hasn’t had as much success in its last few outings. The Beauts dropped a pair of close games against Toronto in their most recent series and fell to the Pride the weekend before. Buffalo has also played the fewest games this season thanks to a fierce winter storm that postponed a series against the Connecticut Whale in mid-November.
Minnesota rookie Natalie Snodgrass has been playing like a veteran for the ‘Caps. She’s currently leading the team in scoring with 10 points, highlighted by a recent birthday performance to remember. She notched a hat trick on her 24th birthday against Montreal, earning her team the win and picking up the PHF’s First Star of the Week honors. Behind Snodgrass is Jonna Albers, who’s riding a three-game goal scoring streak, and defenders Sidney Morin and Patti Marshall, who both have nine points this season.
For the Beauts, Mikyla Grant-Mentis is doing what she does best, leading Buffalo in scoring with one goal and six assists; the PHF sophomore finally lit the lamp this season during the last series against Toronto, her former team. Behind her is Claudia Kepler (3G, 3A) and defender Whitney Dove (2G, 3A) who’s been having a breakout year for Buffalo. Also working for the Beauts is the team’s power play - after struggling with the extra attacker earlier this year, the power play exploded against Toronto in its last game, scoring three goals on the PP.
Buffalo’s goalie situation is still unclear - Kassidy Sauvé recently came back from injury and was settling into the starting role in Buffalo before she appeared to re-injure herself against Toronto; as a result, Sauvé is on the team’s injured reserve list. Lovisa Berndtsson got the start for the Beauts in the last contest, and the Beauts recently signed goaltender Tera Hofmann for the remainder of the season. Berndtsson and Hofmann will be the two netminders available for the Minnesota series.
On the other side of the ice, it’s the same old story in net for Minnesota, who’s relied on starter Amanda Leveille all season long.
Saturday’s contest will be the Beauts Fight Cancer Night and Sunday’s will be a Superhero and Princess Day for Scouts. Tickets for both contests can be bought at https://beauts.goigniter.com/.
About the Buffalo Beauts
The Buffalo Beauts are a professional women's ice hockey team based in Buffalo, New York and competing in the Premier Hockey Federation (formerly the National Women’s Hockey League). The Beauts are one of the Founding Four teams that stepped on the ice in 2015 and the 2017 Isobel Cup Champions. The team is owned and operated by NLTT Hockey Ventures. Visit beauts.nwhl.zone to learn more.
About the Premier Hockey Federation (PHF)
The PHF is the leading home of professional women’s hockey in North America. Established in 2015 as the National Women’s Hockey League, the NWHL rebranded to become the PHF in 2021 and maintains the mission to provide strong role models and fuel the continued growth of the sport. The league is made up of the Boston Pride, Buffalo Beauts, Connecticut Whale, Metropolitan Riveters, Minnesota Whitecaps, Montreal Force and the Toronto Six who all compete annually for the Isobel Cup.
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