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Corcoran, Schurman say AUS playoffs are proof of St. FX’s value

Nicole Corcoran is a fourth-year defenceman with the St. FX X-Women.
Nicole Corcoran is a fourth-year defenceman with the St. FX X-Women.

ANTIGONISH, N.S. – As Atlantic University Sport women’s hockey finalists, Lydia Schurman and Nicole Corcoran of the St. FX X-Women were already going to the U Sports national championship.

But they wanted to attend the nationals, which starts Thursday in Napanee, Ont., as Atlantic University Sport (AUS) champs.

That didn’t happen as fellow Islander Gemma MacDonald of the Saint Mary’s Huskies netted the series-clinching goal 7:17 into the third overtime of Game 3 in the best-of-three final.

RELATED: Click here for story on MacDonald.

But they wanted to attend the nationals, which starts Thursday in Napanee, Ont., as Atlantic University Sport (AUS) champs.

That didn’t happen as fellow Islander Gemma MacDonald of the Saint Mary’s Huskies netted the series-clinching goal 7:17 into the third overtime of Game 3 in the best-of-three final.

RELATED: Click here for story on MacDonald.

A tough loss, yes, but for Schurman, a Summerside native, it shows what St. FX is about.

“Going into triple overtime was super intense and it was definitely exhausting, but I think everyone was pretty high on adrenaline and just kept pushing through,” said Schurman, a second-year forward. “Our team has a lot of character and I think our work ethic throughout the overtime really showed that.”

Fifth-ranked St. FX (16-8, 5-3 playoffs) faces fourth-ranked and RSEQ champ McGill (16-4, 4-1 playoffs) Thursday at 4 p.m. Atlantic in quarter-final action.

Corcoran, a fourth-year defenceman and Bloomfield native, was there in 2015 when St. FX finished fourth, but this is Schurman’s first nationals.

Lydia Schurman is a second-year forward with the St. FX X-Women.

For Corcoran the previous experience can only help her squad’s chances.

“There has been a lot more parity across the country the last couple of years. Our league has become stronger over that period of time, which has better prepared the AUS teams who play at nationals. I think we will have as good a chance as anyone because of this,” said Corcoran. “Our biggest asset is our work ethic. We come to play every game and know how to compete. The three overtime game versus SMU was an example of this. We have a lot of character and chemistry as a group as well.”

Schurman and Corcoran joined St. FX for its reputation as a good hockey school, St. FX has eight AUS titles since 2000, and it’s paid off as they’re part a top-shelf program with a shot at the national title for the second time in three seasons.

“I chose St. FX because growing up I always heard such amazing things about the school and the women's hockey program. This is the first team Nicole and I have played together, but I always looked up to her as an athlete when playing minor hockey on P.E.I. and I am so happy we finally get to be on the same roster,” said Schurman.

National semifinals are Saturday. Consolation and medal games are Sunday.

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