The Boston University women’s ice hockey team failed to earn its second win of the season after a pair of mixed results over the weekend. On Saturday afternoon, the Terriers (1-5-1, 1-5-1 Hockey East) fell 4-3 to No. 3 Boston College. The following day, BU was able to salvage a conference point against the University of New Hampshire (5-1-2, 3-1-2 Hockey East), as the game ended in a 2-2 draw.
In Saturday’s matchup, the Eagles (6-0-1, 3-0-1 Hockey East) struck first when freshman Willow Corson buried the second goal of her collegiate career.
Corson recorded her second point of the night on an assist to forward Erin Connolly, whose third period goal eventually proved to decide the contest.
After 31 minutes of play, the Terriers finally got on the board with a goal from senior forward and captain Rebecca Leslie.
“The biggest thing that changed the last two games for [Leslie], for [senior forward] Victoria [Bach] and probably with [junior forward] Mary Grace [Kelley], is they’re not just playing on their skating and puck skills,” said BU head coach Brian Durocher. “They’re bringing their heart, their determination, their grit and their [competitiveness] all along.”
In the last four minutes of play, the Terriers staged a comeback with dominant play that left the team just shy of a win.
After Connolly’s goal threatened to leave the Terriers in a 4-1 deficit, the Terriers responded with back-to-back goals from Kelley and Leslie, the latter being scored only 43 seconds shy of the final horn, left BU behind the Eagles by a single goal.
Leslie’s two goals and assist made this her second multi-goal game in a row after she tallied a hat-trick against the University of Connecticut last weekend.
“I liked the composure they had to get it in deep, to get control of it, make the extra pass and ultimately just fire one on net,” Durocher said of the team. “We had to try to get it in deep, and we did, but one squirted under Abbey Stanley’s stick and went out in the neutral zone.”
The following day against UNH, senior forward Victoria Bach opened the scoring for the Terriers early with a goal 18 seconds into the contest after a feed from Leslie.
“It gave us a little bit of a cushion and coming off an emotional game [Saturday] against Boston College, it was nice to grab a lead,” Durocher said of Bach’s opening tally. “You’re also talking about a road game, so it was a real good start all around.”
At 15:55, freshman forward Kristina Schuler collected her second goal of the season while BU was on a power play.
Despite the Wildcats outshooting the Terriers 20-13 in the opening period of the matchup, BU kept its 2-0 lead throughout the remainder of the frame and for the entirety of the following period.
The Terriers put 11 shots on goal against UNH freshman Ava Boutilier and had two power play opportunities during the second frame, but they couldn’t find the back of the net to extend their lead.
BU only converted on one of six opportunities on the power play, and Durocher said he was dismayed by the fact that his team took four penalties over the weekend during its power play chances.
“You shoot yourself in the foot by taking a penalty and you know really that hurts you,” Durocher said. “We’ve got to be more disciplined, we’ve got to be smarter and not shoot ourselves in the foot there when we actually did have the puck and moved it around.”
Freshman goaltender Corinne Schroeder, in her second start of the 2017-18 season, denied the Wildcats any chances to get on the board for almost 44 minutes until forward Meghara McManus capitalized on a rebound 4:43 into the final period during a power play.
UNH went on to score again to tie the game as senior defenseman Amy Schlagel slipped the puck past Schroeder during the Wildcats’ four-on-three opportunity.
Neither team was able to score for the rest of the contest and Schroeder ended the afternoon with 42 saves including 20 in the first period.
“I was most impressed with her composure,” Durocher said. “She stayed between the net, she wasn’t overplaying things and it was unfortunate that we couldn’t quite close the door, giving up two power-play goals, but she really did a wonderful job.”