Morgan Blank steps up for Syracuse after nearly 3 seasons in limited role

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Related Stories Syracuse beats Penn State for 3rd straight win, its longest win streak of the seasonSyracuse takes down Penn State, 3-2, for its 2nd straight overtime win Published on February 9, 2016 at 11:33 pm Contact Jake: [email protected]center_img In a game that Syracuse’s top players didn’t play its best, the Orange still prevailed. Morgan Blank, a player on the third line, tied the game with less than three minutes left. SU and Penn State went to overtime, where Syracuse eventually won, capping off its first two-game sweep of the season.Head coach Paul Flanagan said the goal scored by Blank, who hadn’t scored since Oct. 18, energized his team. It showed the depth SU has even when the top players aren’t producing.“I didn’t think we had a lot of life at that point,” Flanagan said. “She hadn’t scored in a lot, so obviously that was a big one. It propelled us into Saturday’s game. We could have easily walked out of there with zero points”Following Syracuse’s sweep of Penn State and a three-game winning streak overall, the Orange (14-13-3, 10-4-2 College Hockey America) lies within reach of the CHA regular-season title with four games remaining. However, the streak and sweep were within minutes of not happening at all, if not for Blank.After not scoring or registering a point in her first two full seasons, Blank has two points in her last five games and has matched her shot total from her first two seasons in those games.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textFlanagan said that after three years full of injuries and a lack of goal scoring, a goal was bound to come from anywhere, whether it be off her stick or her body.“It’s only a matter of time,” Flanagan said. “You’re working hard and you’re out there enough — I think she’s been snake bitten.”The third line, consisting of Blank, Heather Schwarz and Danielle Leslie, created chances against PSU and eventually broke through.Blank credits her recent ability to make plays to Flanagan, who has given Blank more ice time, which has led to more opportunities to score.“To score late in a big game, it’s just a confidence booster, especially going into playoffs,” Blank said.Schwarz and Blank had waited three years to celebrate together.Finally, an injury-free Blank was able to score a goal when it mattered.“I had front row seats to it, so it was amazing”, Schwarz said. “I know that with her injury last year, she felt that she took a step back. To see her come back out on top this weekend it was great.” Commentslast_img

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