TROY, N.Y. - Junior Brianna Decker recorded her sixth career hat trick as the University of Wisconsin Women's hockey team rolled to an 8-2 victory against Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute on Saturday afternoon.
In addition to Decker's three goals, Brooke Ammerman and Carolyne Prevost each netted two goals, while Hilary Knight scored one.
Having completed nonconference play, the Badgers are now 13-1-0 (7-1-0-0 WCHA) on the season, while RPI drops to 3-9-4 (1-3-2 ECAC).
After rallying to escape an upset Friday night, the Badgers took control of the game early on Saturday and never looked back.
Knight opened the scoring at the 7:59 mark of the first period with assists going to Karley Sylvester and Lauren Unser. Just two minutes later, while on the power play, Decker added a second tally with help from her line mates, Prevost and Ammerman.
The Engineers continued to fight back and eventually netted a goal off the stick of Ali Svoboda to make it 2-1. However, Prevost would score her first goal of the game to close out the opening period with a 3-1 Badger lead.
The start of the second period saw giant swings in momentum. Starting with a man-advantage, Ammerman scored a goal to put UW up 4-1. The Engineers then took control of the game and Eleeza Cox scored less than a minute later. RPI continued to pressure and was poised to score a third goal. Fortunately, the Badgers weathered the barrage and maintained their two-goal lead.
In a two-minute stretch halfway through the second period, Prevost and Ammerman each scored again to give the Badgers a 6-2 lead.
Wrapping up the game in the third period, Decker scored twice to secure her sixth career hat trick.
Sophomore goaltender Alex Rigsby made 27 saves in the game to give her a total of 50 on the weekend. Freshman goaltenders Brianna Piper and Kelly O'Brien split time in net for RPI and combined for 34 saves in the contest.
The Badgers return to the ice next week, hosting St. Cloud State on Friday, Nov. 25, and Sunday, Nov. 27. Game times are set for 2 p.m. both days.