In between hosting the Women’s Beanpot, the Boston University women’s hockey team took on the College of the Holy Cross Saturday afternoon.
The Terriers (20-6-3, 14-6-3 Hockey East) won a 5-2 land-slide against the Crusaders (3-21-5, 3-18-2 Hockey East) in a game where special teams made the difference.
It did not take long for Holy Cross to get on the board as the Crusaders scored 70 seconds into the game. Junior forward Katie MacCuaig shot the puck through traffic and past BU sophomore goaltender Kate Stuart to give the Crusaders the 1-0 lead.
Less than four minutes later, BU had the opportunity to tie the game as freshman forward Darci Johal was whistled for checking. While the Terriers were unable to take advantage of the power play, they did get two more chances on the player advantage later on in the period.
Junior forward Jesse Compher and redshirt senior Sammy Davis both had power play goals in the first period with freshman defenseman Nadia Mattivi scoring the only even-strength goal for the Terriers to have a 3-1 lead at the end of the first.
BU head coach Brian Durocher said that the success on the power play is not something new for the Terriers, as the players on the penalty unit have been playing together since last year.
“It’s a group that [has been playing together] pretty much the whole back of last year and most of the way through this season,” Durocher said. “When they are really playing well, their composure to settle the puck, and restart some type of a four to five pass sequence, it can be very important.”
With just over a minute to go in the first, BU sophomore defenseman Alex Allan was whistled for interference. The Terriers ended the period with a two-goal lead, but would start the second period on the penalty kill. Despite this, they were able to keep the Crusaders off the board, leaving the score 3-1.
At 3:48 of the second stanza, the Terriers power play would get to work once again. Junior forward Bailey Bennett of Holy Cross hit senior defenseman Breanna Scarpaci along the boards and was whistled for checking.
Just over a minute later, Davis scored her second of the game. Senior defenseman Abby Cook passed the puck from the blue line to an open Davis at the right face-off circle and one-timed it past sophomore goaltender Jada Brenon to give the Terriers a 4-1 lead.
Durocher said Davis’s goals were a combination of her talent and the movement of the Terriers in the offensive zone.
“She obviously had two great shots that were both under the crossbar,” Durocher said. “Credit to her shooting ability, and certainly her teammates for making it hard for the defenders on Holy Cross.”
Holy Cross was able to cut BU’s lead to two goals just over half-way into the second period as freshman forward Mary Edmonds picked up the puck in the slot and shot it between Stuart’s leg.
Less than two minutes later, sophomore forward Courtney Correia regained the three-goal lead for the Terriers. Brenon thought she had control of the puck, but it bounced past her and bounced off the endboards before popping out to Correia who shot it into an empty net to give the Terriers the 5-2 lead going into the third period of play.
The 5-2 lead held, giving BU the win and positive momentum heading into Tuesday’s Beanpot final.
Stuart made 17 saves on the night, and finished with a .895 save percentage.
Durocher said he is proud of Stuart’s consistent performances over the past two years.
“She was real solid,” Durocher said. “I don’t think she’s to be faulted on either of the goals … I’m just happy she’s played consistently and so well throughout pretty much her entire two years here at BU.”
Up next, the Terriers are set to take on Northeastern University (25-3-1, 21-2-0 Hockey East) on Tuesday night in the Women’s Beanpot championship game at Walter Brown Arena.
Durocher said the Terriers have to be more efficient on offense in the future.
“If we can just avoid any segments of the game where for any length of time we are taking chances or being over-aggressive,” Durocher said. “[That] would be the only thing we got to erase from today.”