The Boston University women’s hockey team boasts plenty of veteran experience, with 17 roster spots filled by players with at least two years of collegiate experience. Coach Brian Durocher hopes this experience will translate into unprecedented success in Hockey East for a team entering its fourth year as a Division-I program.
The Terrier front line poses a major threat to opposing defenses due to its experience and depth. The team returns its top 10 scorers from last year, giving Durocher countless options in deciding who to put on the ice in certain situations.
The forwards are led by senior co-captain Gina Kearns, who topped the team with 16 assists last year and was second with 24 points. BU’s most potent scorer last year was junior Melissa Anderson, who led the Terriers with 29 points. She returns after a 2007-08 campaign in which she was recognized as a Hockey East All-Star.
Senior forwards Erin Seman and Nicki Wiart are both coming off injury-plagued junior seasons, but offer veteran experience that Durocher can utilize. The same goes for seniors Caroline Bourdeau, Kelley Karnan and Laurel Koller.
Sophomore Jillian Kirchner, who will look to build on an impressive rookie season in which she netted 22 points, scored the tying goal last Saturday in BU’s 3-2 win over Mercyhurst College. Juniors Jenn Arms and Jonnie Bloemers will also bolster the formidable front line. Bloemers had two game-winning goals last year, and notched the game-winner for the Terriers last Saturday.’ ‘
The Terriers also expect a strong season from freshman Jenelle Kohanchuk, the team’s only first-year forward.
The Terrier defense combines veterans and rookies to create a group that is both experienced and energetic.
Senior Sarah Russell leads the Terriers’ pack of defensemen in her second year as a co-captain. Junior Sarah Appleton led BU’s defense with 17 points last season. Senior Amanda Shaw ranked second with 14 points a year ago and is expected to provide another standout defensive showing this season. Senior Caitlin Reddy provides more veteran stability, while junior Melissa Tetreau will be a weapon off the bench that can fill holes as either a forward or a defender.
The Terrier defense features three hopeful rookies in freshmen Kasey Boucher, Carly Warren and Tara Watchorn.’ ‘ ‘ ‘ ‘
Durocher will tell you his starting goaltender is the best in Hockey East. That may be true, but the Terriers also have two skilled backups who offer depth at the position.
Senior Allyse Wilcox was an All-New England All-Star and a First-Team Hockey East All-Star last year. Her .925 save percentage was seventh best in the nation, and her 1.76 goals-against average was good for ninth in the country. Wilcox’s past successes and reliability have made her the centerpiece of this team.
Junior Melissa Haber started nine games for BU last year, posting a 3-5-1 record. Haber has proved she is a qualified goaltender and that Durocher can use her with confidence on days Wilcox needs to rest. Fellow junior Ashley Leichliter, who appeared in goal for two games last season, provides Durocher another option at the position.’
Later this season, the program will graduate its first senior class that has played solely at the varsity level. With that in mind, the Terrier upperclassmen will attempt to author BU’s most successful year since becoming a D-I squad. Durocher hopes to make use of this healthy ambition as his team pursues a Hockey East crown.