After the pandemic robbed Northeastern of a promising run in the NCAA Tournament, this season is set to be quite the revenge tour for the Huskies. Luckily, the key parts of last year’s success are returning, with the Huskies losing only three seniors to graduation. The high-flying offense is set to make a return as Alina Mueller, one of the nation’s top scorers, and her linemate Chloé Aurard both head into their junior years.
Most exciting for the Huskies is the addition of Providence transfer forward Maureen Murphy. Murphy is looking to return to the ice after her 2019–20 season was cut short due to injury. She notched 22 goals and 21 assists during her sophomore campaign with the Friars, and even managed seven goals in 11 games before her injury last year. Murphy will likely be replacing Jess Schryver on the top line of forwards, and will add another scoring threat to an already deadly group.
The loss of the Class of 2020 is not small, however. The graduating seniors left Matthews Arena as the winningest class in program history, and for good reason. Two-way center Matti Hartman was a true 200-foot player, while defenders Paige Capistran and Codie Cross were cornerstones of the Huskies’ blue line. While their leadership will be missed, the addition of freshmen forwards like Molly Griffin and defenders Lily Yovetich and Abbey Marohn should serve to fill the gaps.
Between the pipes returns Aerin Frankel, who boasted an NCAA-leading .956 save percentage and a strong 1.07 goals against average. Frankel was also a top-10 finalist for the Patty Kazmaier Award, joining her teammate Alina Mueller in that recognition.
Skylar Fontaine, the reigning Hockey East Defenseman of the Year, returns to her throne at the top of the Huskies defense for her senior season.
Bottom Line: The Huskies do not need to improve on much from last season, but they will anyways under the leadership of Dave Flint. The addition of Maureen Murphy makes them arguably the most talented offense in the nation, and Aerin Frankel is a top-two college goalie. The only area of slight concern is the defense without captain Paige Capistran, but there is more than enough talent on this team to overcome that challenge. The rest of the NCAA had better look out; the beast of Huntington Avenue is ready to finish what the pandemic cut short last season.
MA — There was a theme for the 2020 Hockey East Championship, a theme the Northeastern
Huskies hammered home forcefully and often: goals, goals, and more goals. That
theme propelled the Northeastern Huskies to an unforgettable 9–1 victory over
UConn and their third consecutive Hockey East Championship.
began the day with 149 goals on the season, and they decided to add to that in
a big way. The Northeastern Huskies played the Huskies of UConn, a team they
had beaten three times during the regular season by a combined score of 10–2.
By the time Sunday’s game wrapped up, Northeastern had doubled that margin.
Northeastern came out firing early and often, applying heavy pressure on the UConn defense and tallying several opportunities in the first five minutes. Junior defenseman Skylar Fontaine gave Northeastern its first goal of the day as she finished off a brilliant feed from forward Alina Mueller. Including the two quarterfinal games against Vermont, the semifinal against Maine, and her goal on Sunday, Fontaine had scored or assisted on the Huskies’ last eight goals.
Northeastern doubled its lead soon after, as Jess Schryver finished off an excellent pass from Chloé Aurard for a 2–0 lead. The goal was initially called back for interference, but replay confirmed the score.
lone goal came just two minutes later, as an awkward bounce off the boards put
goalie Aerin Frankel in a difficult position and allowed UConn forward
Catherine Crawley to put the puck in the back of the net.
That’s when Northeastern really decided to take things seriously.
Huskies stayed aggressive for the rest of the game, tallying minutes upon
minutes of offensive zone time with exquisite puck movement that made it seem
like they had eyes in the back of their heads. Mueller triggered the avalanche
with a minute to play in the first period, fielding a pass in the high slot and
firing an impeccably placed rocket into the bottom left corner.
The second period was easily the
lowest-scoring, but its lone goal was easily the most impressive of the night.
Just one minute in, Matti Hartman was skating away from the goal near the right
dot when a quick pass flew behind her. Without looking at the goal, Hartman subtly
flipped her stick behind her back and poked it through traffic for the Huskies’
fourth score. It’s difficult to tell from looking at her reaction whether or
not she was trying to score, but the result was gorgeous either way.
Hartman’s fellow captains Capistran and Brooke Hobson logged assists on the play. After the game, Hartman remarked that three had been waiting for a such a goal for some time, and that they finally got their chance.
period was a nonstop Northeastern tidal wave, with goals from Chloé Aurard and
Katie Cipra coming in the first 40 seconds.
end of the period Jess Schryver, Codie Cross, and Peyton Anderson had joined
the party, yielding the 9–1 final score that set records for goals and scoring
margin in a Hockey East Championship. Eight different Northeastern skaters punched
home a goal, with Schryver the only double-dipper among them.
“I had confidence in the team, seeing how relaxed they were before the game,” coach Dave Flint said. “I felt good about them going out and taking care of business.”
spoke on the team’s recent results, noting “with the recent success, it’s
important to remember where you came from. Freshman year was tough and so was
sophomore year. We were about .500 that year, and we’ve tried to remember that
struggle going into games like this.”
took home Tournament MVP for her efforts throughout the Hockey East Tournament,
including a one-goal, three-assist performance in the championship. Mueller now
has 66 points on the year as the leader one of the most formidable attacks in
college hockey. Aurard matched Mueller’s performance with four points of her
own in the championship game.
coach Dave Flint praised the entire first line, noting that they played like a
“buzz saw” for the entirety of the contest. Flint also reflected on his time at
Northeastern after the game, explaining that he has learned to focus on the
players in the locker room rather just look ahead to victories and bring in
recruits. Flint emphasized the impact former Husky Kendall Coyne had on the
locker room during her junior year and says that competitive mindset has been
maintained during the past several years.
Aerin Frankel took home goalie of the tournament, although she didn’t have much to do in this game. Northeastern’s defense stepped up on the biggest stage, forcing UConn into several turnovers throughout the game and preventing the bad Huskies from having significant offensive zone time.
Flint briefly discussed the future after the game, stating, “You can get up there and you can achieve excellence, but how are you gonna sustain it? That’s the challenge for us now looking ahead to the [NCAA] tournament.”
will likely play Princeton in the first round of the NCAA Tournament next
weekend, though specific details will be announced later. WRBB will have the
call for that quarterfinal matchup.
In the midst of one of the
greatest season in programs history, nine players on the No. 4 Northeastern women’s
hockey team and head coach Dave Flint were honored with a slew of awards for
the 2019–20 campaign, the conference announced this week.
Freshmen Megan Carter and
Katy Knoll, sophomores Alina Mueller and Chloe Aurard, juniors Skylar Fontaine
and Aerin Frankel, seniors Matti Hartman and Paige Capistran, and head coach
Flint were all recipients of various conference awards, as voted on by the league’s
10 head coaches.
Headlining the honors were
Mueller and Flint, who took home two of the most prestigious awards on Friday.
Mueller was unanimously
selected the Cammi Granato Award winner as the Player of the Year in Hockey
East. With 20 goals and 24 assists for 44 points
in Hockey East play, Mueller led the conference in scoring by a wide margin; the
next closest player (teammate Chloe Aurard) was 10 points behind. Mueller led
the conference in both points and assists as well, in addition to her nine
game-winning goals and three shorthanded goals. If ever there was a time for a
unanimous selection, Mueller’s season fits the bill.
also earned a pair of statistical awards during her otherworldly regular
season. The sophomore was named both the league’s Scoring Champion and the PNC
Bank Three Stars Award winner.
every Hockey East contest, the Three Stars of the game are announced. The Three
Stars Award is given to the player that accumulates the most “points” based on
these recognitions, with first being worth the most points and third the least.
Mueller was named the first and second star four times apiece and the third star
on a trio of occasions, earning her the overall award.
second year in a row, Flint was voted as the Coach of Year. Northeastern’s
helmsman led the Huskies to a program-record 24 conference wins and their
second consecutive regular season title. Flint’s never-too-high, never-too-low
mentality has been a staple of his teams’ success over the years and helped the
Huskies to new heights this year.
Aurard, Fontaine (unanimous), and Frankel were each named First-Team All-Stars
and collectively comprised two-thirds of the team’s selections.
Second only to her linemate Mueller, Aurard racked up 34 points on 15 goals and 19 assists in Hockey East play. Individually, her goal and assist tallies rank third and second in the conference. Aurard was the only player in Hockey East to record two hat tricks, and she matched Mueller’s three shorthanded goals. Talk about a lethal duo on that top line.
Northeastern’s star blueliner, led Hockey East defensemen in myriad categories,
including goals (13), assists (21), points (34), rating (+42) and shots on goal
(155). Fontaine was a vital contributor to Northeastern’s elite offense and
defense, often her blinding speed and smooth stickhandling to initiate attacks and
Fontaine was also honored with the Best Defenseman Award. She is the first Northeastern player to win the award since its inception ten years ago.
Stalwart as ever in net, Frankel compiled one of the best seasons in Hockey East history. Her .967 save percentage is the highest mark in conference history, while her .84 goals against average ranks third. Frankel also led the conference with nine shutouts, as well as wins and win percentage (.864) with a 19–3–0 record in Hockey East play. A top-10 Patty Kazmaier candidate, Frankel consistently gives the Huskies a chance to win every game. The junior netminder was also named Goaltender of the Year for the second straight season.
Carter and Knoll, the most
prominent members of the Huskies’ standout freshman class, were both named to
the Pro Ambitions All-Rookie Team.
Carter was a pivotal part of the conference-best Northeastern defense, her size and physicality perfectly complementing Fontaine’s speed and shiftiness. The blueliner led Hockey East freshmen with 41 blocked shots in the regular season, while chipping in two goals and nine assists.
Knoll made an immediate offensive impact for the Huskies. The Amherst, New York native oscillated between the first and second forward lines for most of the season, earning two Pro Ambitions Rookie of the Month nods (November, December) and a WCHA National Rookie of the Month award as she led Northeastern freshmen in scoring with 10 goals and 16 assists (26 points). Those numbers were good for fourth, second, and third among Hockey East first-years.
Matti Hartman, the Huskies’ second-line center, was named the conference’s Best Defensive Forward. Hartman excelled on the forecheck, pinning opposing teams in their own zone and regaining possession for the Huskies by forcing turnovers. When opponents actually made it down to the Northeastern end, her excellent positioning clogged passing lanes and disrupted attacks. Hartman is the third Husky to earn the honor, joining alumnae Casey Pickett and Hayley Scamurra.
Capistran is the first-ever Northeastern recipient of the Sportsmanship Award.
Voted by her teammates as captain for the first time in her final campaign,
Capistran has been a Husky mainstay over the past four years and always
exemplified leadership qualities on and off the ice.
A quick anecdote about Capistran to cap things off, as it’s one of my favorite stories and really illustrates what she’s meant to the program. In the waning seconds of regulation in last year’s Hockey East Championship, all hell broke loose. A waved-off empty netter, a thrown notebook, and a late Boston College faceoff goal to force overtime left the Huskies reeling as they headed back to their locker room to regroup.
Was it captain Brittany Bugalski that settled things down and rallied the troops? One of the assistant captains, maybe? According to Kasidy Anderson, it was actually Capistran, who up to that point was known by the media as more of a quiet presence than an outspoken leader. Anderson recalled that Capistran reminded everyone to forget about the chaos that had just happened, even though it “sucked,” and focus on the task ahead. It would have been easy to blame officials or lament bad luck, but the now-captain displayed true sportsmanship, shrugging it all off and getting her team back on track as they went on to claim the trophy.
Huskies will look to return to the championship again this weekend, starting
with their semifinal matchup against Maine at 12 p.m. today. WRBB will provide
written coverage of the game.
BOSTON — Coming off of a 3–0 win
against the Merrimack Warriors Friday night, the Northeastern Huskies were
still feeding off of that energy.
Northeastern’s three seniors were honored before their last regular-season home game. Codie Cross, from Alberta, Canada, Paige Capistran, from Manchester, New Hampshire, and Matti Hartman, from Etna, New Hampshire, were all recognized for their contributions to the program.
Cross played a shift in the first period, but an ongoing lower-body injury kept her from playing heavy minutes. Capistran and Hartman both played their hearts out, as did many other Huskies.
great leaders on and off the ice and really nice people, and I think they’ve
done a lot for this program,” junior goaltender Aerin Frankel said. “Our
culture has grown a lot, and it started with them as freshman learning from
their seniors and they’ve done a really good job carrying that out to this
Even though the Huskies’ position in
Hockey East was determined more than three weeks ago, head coach Dave Flint
still wanted to finish the year strong.
get more passionate, I think, on senior weekend,” he said. “Even though it was
a long time ago for me, I remember what it was like . . . so I always want the
seniors to go out on a winning note.”
The energy that Flint
wanted was evident throughout the first period and most of the game. The Huskies
started strong, maintaining possession for most of the period.
With nine minutes
center Tessa Ward received a penalty for cross-checking. While most teams might
be nervous when down a player, the Huskies seem to gain confidence. Only eight
percent of the team’s penalty kills have ended in goals, compared with the
Huskies’ 15 percent success rate on the power play.
This penalty kill was no
different. Alina Mueller fired a shot into the back of the net for her
third shorthanded goal this season.
The Huskies notched a second goal when
Miceala Sindoris’ slick puck handling and blocked wrister led to a loose puck
in the slot. Brooke Hobson was trailing the play and positioned herself
perfectly to slap it home.
In the second period Merrimack increased their intensity and energy. They had many attempts on goal, but none passed through Frankel. The Husky goalie fired her team up near the end of the second period when she made an initial save, saw the puck was open and vulnerable behind her, dove backward to make a second save, and perfectly cleared the puck to Katy Knoll. Knoll found Tessa Ward, who carried the puck up the ice, wrapped around the net, and perfectly fed Mia Brown for the third and final goal of the game.
The third period was a slow
and scoreless one for the Huskies. While they maintained possession for most of
the period, they did not get as many shots on goal as they would have liked.
Near the end of the game, a
Tessa Ward checking penalty and a Chloe Aurard slashing call brought the fierce
penalty kill squad back out onto the ice. It was fitting that the successful penalty kills would seal
an illustrious defensive record — when the clock showed zeros, Aerin Frankel
had recorded her 10th shutout of the year, breaking Erika Silva’s
20-year-old school record. Frankel also equaled Chanda Gunn’s 19-year-old
record of 23 wins.
“It’s a cool thing to know, but it’s not super important to me personally,” Frankel said. “It’s more important to me that we keep winning.”
The Huskies (28–4–2, 24–3–0 WHEA) kick off the Hockey East Tournament this week with a best-of-three quarterfinal series against the Vermont Catamounts. Tune in for WRBB’s coverage from Matthews Arena, with the first game starting at 1 PM EST on Thursday.
need to be focused, we need to be ready,” Flint said. “It’s playoffs, anything
BOSTON — Every major women’s hockey poll
places Boston University as the eighth-best team in the nation. Although those
polls place Northeastern third, the Huskies would be forgiven for taking every
last game to edge BU out for the Hockey East crown.
Huskies didn’t need that many. They clinched on Friday. On the last day of
January. With three weeks to go.
afternoon’s bout against the UConn Huskies started in Northeastern’s usual
style: a first-period goal. Chloe Aurard passed to Alina Mueller dead in front
of the goal for an easy score, Northeastern 43rd opening-period goal
Katy Knoll looked to add her own goal but was blocked by UConn forward Catherine Crawley. At the fifteen minute mark, Matti Hartman went into the penalty box for hooking, giving UConn a chance to even the score. But twenty five seconds later, a UConn tripping penalty evened the numbers. Neither team capitalized, and the four-on-four ended without incident.
minutes later, Northeastern’s Aerin Frankel made a great glove save, snatching Brianna
Colangelo’s shot out of the air. Shortly after, Mueller would-be second goal clanged
off the pipe. With two minutes left in the period, UConn’s Danielle Fox found
some empty net and shot the puck in, tying the score. UConn nearly took the
lead, but Frankel turned away Viki Harkness and Camryn Wong.
second period began with a bang when, after just twenty-four seconds, Mueller
snapped a shot off from the left circle for her second goal of the game and her
eighteenth of the year.
looked to even the score but Frankel, determined not to cede the lead again,
dove in front of the goal, practically belly flopping on the ice to block the
the early action, the second period became a fast-paced puck battle, with 21
combined shots on goal. Midway through, Northeastern’s Katie Cipra broke away
and streaked towards the goal, but was blocked by UConn goalie Morgan Fisher.
UConn got their own chance to score during a power play, but Colangelo’s shot deflected
off the outstretched arm of Frankel and over the net.
Five minutes into the third period, Northeastern came at Fisher with a flurry of shots, first by Veronika Pettey, then by Knoll; both were dismissed. Lauren MacInnis then got control of the puck and tried for a goal but was wide. Katie Holmes put her foot in the ring, but was again blocked by Fisher. One minutes, five shots, nothing to show.
With seven minutes left in the game, Aurard tried from the left pipe, but Fisher snagged the puck in midair. Mueller tried for a hat trick with a missile from center ice but was stymied again by Fisher.
After a Megan Carter holding penalty, UConn pull Fisher to create a six-on-four. It looked like Frankel would handle it until Jessie Aney’s first collegiate goal tied the score. Northeastern tried to get back on top with shots by Matti Hartman, Mia Brown, and Holmes in the last seconds of the game, but the game went to overtime.
teams were desperate to end the game. Despite some great saves from Frankel, it
appeared as though UConn would control the puck throughout the extra period.
then the Huskies broke away. Codie Cross went for the game-winning goal, but
was blocked by Wong. Aurard and Mueller tried, but were blocked by Fisher. It
seemed like all hope was lost until Cross grabbed onto the puck and fired it in,
sealing Northeastern’s eighth straight win. Mueller’s assist on the play marked
her 100th collegiate point in just sixty games.
(23–3–1, 20–2–0 HEAW) will take on No. 8 BU in the first round of the Beanpot
on Tuesday. Dale Desantis, Alex Bensley, and Catherine Morrison will call that
one, with coverage beginning at 4:45 PM EST.
Fifteen minutes into Saturday afternoon’s
matchup with the Vermont Catamounts, Northeastern allowed a goal, the first in
nearly three weeks. The team had played 315 consecutive minutes (more than five
games) without letting their opponents on the board.
But in a reminder of the just how
special this season has been, even a moment of disappointment was surrounded by
overwhelming dominance. The Huskies thrashed Vermont, 10–2, for their sixth
They didn’t take long to get going, with
Katy Knoll converting on a backhand just 36 seconds into the first period.
Five minutes later Chloe Aurard got in
on the fun, taking advantage of a neat pass by Jess Schryver just in front of
the goal to knock in the puck.
The Catamounts had an opportunity to
shorten the Huskies’ lead when Tessa Ward went into the penalty box for cross
checking. Although Vermont got a few good shots in, they couldn’t get past the
indestructible Aerin Frankel.
With just 23 seconds left in the power
play, Vermont was given a second chance when Skylar Fontaine was called for
high sticking, making it five-on-three. Northeastern controlled the puck
throughout the power play and much of the rest of the period. However, with
five minutes to go, Vermont’s Val Caldwell shot
from the right circle and ended the five-game shutout streak.
Northeastern rebounded four
minutes into the second period when Lauren MacInnes put one home in from the
right circle on a Veronika Pettey assist.
goaltender Blanka Škodová with Natalie Ferenc in the hope of turning things
around. The Catamounts were quickly given an opportunity to close the gap when
Kristina Shanahan made a great shot at the goal, but Frankel turned her away.
Four minutes in, the
Huskies capitalized on a Vermont penalty for too many players on the ice when
Matti Hartman fired home a power-play goal from the left circle.
Apparently unsatisfied with one power-play goal, the Huskies made Vermont pay for a hooking penalty when Aurard notched her second goal of the game.
Vermont called a timeout,
trying to regain control of a game that was quickly slipping away. The timeout
appeared to do some good, as a few minutes later Shanahan’s ninth goal of the
year cut the Husky lead to 5–2. But the Catamounts couldn’t celebrate for long,
as Northeastern scored its third power play goal of the game when Schryver beat
Ferenc for her third goal of the season.
With a little over eight
minutes left in the second period, Aurard collected a rebound in front of the
goal and netted her second hat trick of the season.
Clearly, the Huskies were
not happy about the Catamounts taking away their shutout streak. With three
minutes left, Peyton Anderson passed to Katie Cipra who knocked it in the back
of the net, making the score 8–2 and ending an absolutely bonkers second
For the third period,
coach Dave Flint replaced Frankel with freshman goaltender Gwyneth Philips, who
hadn’t allowed a goal in 184 minutes of collegiate action. With a six-point
lead, Flint must’ve felt comfortable giving Philips a little more playing time.
Vermont also decided to change goalies, giving third-stringer Sierra Natzke her
third career appearance.
Natzke faired about as
well as expected, giving up a between-the-legs goal to Alina Mueller four
Two minutes later, Northeastern
captain Peyton Anderson snapped one home, producing the 10–2 final score.
The Huskies moved to
21–3–1 (18–2–0 HEAW), hold a nine-point lead atop the Hockey East standings, and
will look to widen the margin on Tuesday against second-place BU. Christian
Skroce, Matt Neiser, and Catherine Morrison will have the call, with coverage
beginning at 6:45 PM EST.
BOSTON — Boston College and Northeastern. Cross-town rivals. The top two teams in Women’s Hockey East. Any time these two squads face off, it’s must-watch action.
That said, there’s been a
sizeable gap between the teams this season. Entering Sunday afternoon’s duel at
Matthews Arena, the No. 3 Huskies had outscored the Eagles a combined 9–0 over
two shutout wins on Boston College’s home turf. Northeastern already carried a
five-point lead in the standings over BC — with two games in hand at that.
The Huskies’ dominance of
the rivalry series continued into round three. The Eagles had no answer for the
home team, falling 3–0 to Northeastern as the Huskies capped off a statement
regular season sweep of Boston College.
“The goals didn’t come as
easily as Friday,” head coach Dave Flint said. “It was a tough game. I like how
we ground it out and battled for three periods.”
It took less than two minutes for Northeastern (17–3–1, 14–2–0 WHEA) to jump out in front. Matti Hartman took the puck into the slot on a counterattack and fired a wrister over the shoulder of Boston College (11–9–2, 10–7–1 WHEA) goaltender Kelly Pickreign for her fifth goal and 10th point of the season.
The Eagles had plenty of
chances to respond in the first. The Huskies were called for three penalties,
but stifled Boston College’s ensuing power plays. Shifting bodies in shooting
lanes and constantly clearing pucks, they held the Eagles to three shots on net
on those opportunities.
Northeastern killed off a fourth consecutive penalty halfway through the second frame before the whistles started blowing the other way. Boston College was called for four penalties over the final 11 minutes of the period, but Northeastern failed to convert. A defensive lapse even allowed the Eagles a clean shorthanded breakaway, but goaltender Aerin Frankel stonewalled Delaney Belinskas on the shot to bail out the Huskies.
The final penalty of the second period bled 17 seconds over to the third. Northeastern needed just 10 of those seconds to double their lead. Alina Mueller skated to the left side of the zone after winning the faceoff at center ice and received a pass from Skylar Fontaine. The Swiss sensation then did what she does best, threading the needle through three Boston College defensemen to find an open Katy Knoll on the weak side. The freshman tucked home her sixth goal of the season, extending the Huskies’ lead to 2–0.
After Boston College was called for yet another penalty three minutes later, Northeastern went on the power play again. Just like the one before it, this one ended with a puck in the back of the Eagles’ net. This time the culprit was Fontaine, who slotted home her ninth tally of the season off a feed from Chloe Aurard to put the game out of reach at 3–0. The Huskies held course the rest of the way, killing off one last penalty for good measure as time ran out.
The story of the game was
the Northeastern penalty kill, which was a perfect five-for-five. The Huskies
have allowed just five goals all season on the penalty kill in 64 opponent
opportunities (7.8 percent).
Fontaine, a key part of the
four-on-five, lit up when asked about the PK unit’s performance: “It makes us
really proud. We put a lot of work in in practice for PKs, so it’s great to see
it turn out on the ice.”
“Our PK forecheck is really
good; they execute it to a tee every time,” said Flint. “We apply pressure when
we need to apply pressure, and it’s tough for teams to get anything going
against us. We’ve got kids out there willing to block shots, and your best
penalty killer needs to be your goalie — and [Frankel’s] a pretty good penalty
Frankel added, “I can
confidently say the entire year our penalty kill has been really strong, so
that’s really nice to see and it’s helpful to our game.”
Frankel’s play against the Eagles this season has been historically dominant. No team has ever shut out BC three times in one season, and Frankel has blanked the Eagles more times this season than every other NCAA goalie in the last five years combined. She followed up her 26-save performance on Friday with 25 saves on Sunday, and recorded her sixth shutout of the season.
“I think it’s really big
for the program in general,” Frankel said of the team’s dominance over BC. “Over
the past decade it’s always been a really intense rivalry, but I think over the
past couple years we’ve had the upper hand on them . . . I think it says a lot
about how far this program’s come and I’m really proud of this team.”
Northeastern resumes play
on Friday when Hockey East foe UConn visits Matthews Arena for a 6 PM matchup.
Wednesday night’s tilt was one of
extremes. Northeastern looked to grab the top spot in Hockey East, while Holy
Cross was just barely holding off Merrimack to stay out of last place. The contest
came a week after the teams’ last meeting, when Northeastern notched their
biggest win in 20 years.
Tonight’s first period looked very
different from the last game, with Holy Cross staving off Northeastern’s
superior offense for the first 15 minutes. But it could only last so long
before Northeastern seized control. Codie Cross skated around the goal, knocked
the puck off a defender’s stick, and watched her first goal of the season skid
in. It was Northeastern’s 24th first-period goal on the year.
The Huskies kept their momentum going,
and a minute later Tessa Ward fired at Crusader goalie Julia Pelletier.
Pelletier blocked the attempt, but Northeastern’s Peyton Anderson was there to
clean up the rebound shot that became Northeastern’s second goal. The play was
reviewed to determine whether Anderson had kicked the goal in, but the footage
confirmed that the puck hit her leg, so the call stood.
With thirty seconds left in the period,
Northeastern got another rebound goal when Anderson shot from just in front of
the blue line. Again Pelletier rejected the shot, but Chloe Aurard knocked it
in for her 12th goal of the season and Northeastern’s third in four
minutes. On the play, Cross logged the first of her four assists on the night.
Holy Cross made a last-ditch attempt to
get on the board with Bailey Bennet shot, but Aerin Frankel made a midair block.
When Bennet skated away she was knocked down by Megan Carter, starting a Holy
Cross power play that would continue into the second period.
Holy Cross couldn’t convert on the
power play, and when Frankel leg-blocked another Bennet shot a few minutes
later, any momentum the Crusaders has built on the power play finally
evaporated. It didn’t take long for Northeastern to continue their goalfest,
and Pro Ambitions Rookie of the Week Katy Knoll got her chance when Pelletier
blocked a shot by Matti Hartman. The puck went careening towards Knoll, who
quickly slammed the puck in off the rebound.
Pelletier made a great save against Alina
Mueller, but was stymied by Hartman, who received the puck from Jess Schryver,
faked Pelletier out, and easily knocked the puck in for the fifth goal of the
game. Northeastern dominated the second period, with 21 shots on goal to Holy
Five minutes into the third, it looked
like yet another Husky was going to add a goal when Skylar Fontaine made a
great shot at the goal, but it was slightly off and caromed off the pipe. Kate
Holmes — who would have received an assist had Fontaine’s shot found the back
of the net — decided that assisting Mia Brown was just as good. The resulting
goal looked effortless.
With just under eight minutes left and
the game comfortably in hand, Northeastern head coach Dave Flint pulled Frankel
in favor of freshman Alexa Matses. It was Matses’ first collegiate appearance
and, although she looked green, she held down the fort. With just seconds left to
play, Mueller sped towards the goal and slid the puck in behind Pelletier, with
Cross earning her fourth assist and fifth point. The game ended with a 7–0
Holy Cross looked a bit tighter on
defense compared with last week’s 11–0 drubbing at Northeastern’s hands.
Pelletier made some great saves, but without sufficient backup from her
teammates she didn’t stand a chance against the onslaught of Husky rebound
goals. Northeastern scored multiple goals in every period, with seven total
goals from seven different players.
The win earned Northeastern a season
sweep over Holy Cross. This was to be expected given Northeastern’s unanimous
first-place finish — and Holy Cross’s last-place finish — in the Hockey East
preseason poll. But the 24–0 combined scoring margin was impressive even for
Northeastern improved to 14–2 (11–2
HEAW) and leapfrogged Boston College for first place in the Hockey East
standings. On the cusp of the season’s halfway point, they are ranked third in
The Huskies have a whopping 25 days off
before their next tilt against Vermont on December 30th.
Coming off a 2–1 victory
the night before, Northeastern’s women’s hockey looked to complete the sweep
against rivals Boston University on Sunday afternoon.
BU controlled the puck
in the first period, with nine shots on goal to Northeastern’s four. But goalie
Aerin Frankel saved all nine, including a particularly impressive block on a
wrister from BU’s Courtney Correia. After Frankel’s save, freshman forward Katy
Knoll, lying face-down on the ice, cleared the puck away from the goal.
With 4:36 left in the
first, Husky forward Tessa Ward notched a deflection goal assisted by Megan
Carter and Skylar Fontaine. The goal was Ward’s first of the season; the assist
was Carter’s first collegiate point.
With just under four
minutes left in the first period, Northeastern’s Brooke Hobson was whistled for
interference when she knocked a BU player down. The Huskies handled the power
play without a problem, and Frankel ended a shutout first period with the puck
in her hand.
Northeastern came in hot
in the second period. Five-and-a-half minutes in, after BU left her unattended
in the slot, junior forward Veronika Pettey fielded a pass from Matti Hartman
and punched home a one-timer for her third goal of the season.
Despite two second-period
BU penalties (Emma Wuthrich’s roughing and Natasza Tarnowski’s high sticking),
Northeastern couldn’t capitalize. The second period ended with a 9–6
Northeastern shot advantage and a 2–0 Northeastern lead.
The third period started
with a power play in effect, but again, Northeastern couldn’t make anything
happen against the shorthanded Terriers. With about eight minutes remaining, Knoll
missed a shot, hit the ground, looked wobbly when she got up, and left her
stick on the ice when she was subbed out.
A BU interference
penalty handed the Huskies another power play, and again they couldn’t
capitalize, taking just one shot. A Knoll attempt just after the end of the
power play was redirected into the wall behind the net by BU goalie Corinne
Schroeder. BU pulled Schroeder with two minutes to go but couldn’t sneak one by
Frankel, who finished with twenty saves.
shutting out BU, the game was a tight race for control of the puck.
Northeastern had only 22 shots on goal, well below their average of 38.
Mueller, recently named Hockey East Player of the Month, didn’t do much, registering
only three shots.
The weekend sweep moved Northeastern
to 7–1–0 (4–1–0 HEAW) and dropped BU to 5–2–1 (2–2–1 HEAW). The Huskies’ next
game is against the winless Holy Cross crusaders on Friday at 1 PM at Matthews
The No. 3 Northeastern
women’s hockey team opened Hockey East play on Friday night with a matchup
against the Maine Black Bears in Orono, Maine. Continuing their impressive
undefeated start to the 2019–20 campaign, the Huskies rolled over the Black
Bears with a convincing 6–1 victory at Harold Alfond Sports Arena.
As has become customary
this season, the Huskies (4–0–0, 1–0–0 HE) used a first-period flurry to claim
an early advantage. Freshman Jess Schryver opened her collegiate account just
over halfway through the period to give the Huskies a 1–0 lead, and senior
Matti Hartman doubled that lead 13 seconds later. Sophomore Chloe Aurard made
it three a couple minutes after that. This is the third time already this
season that head coach Dave Flint’s squad has scored at least three goals in
the first period. Not too shabby.
That dominance continued
into the second period, when the game was well and truly put out of Maine’s reach.
Sophomore Mia Brown, who scored a last-minute, game-winning goal against
Syracuse the weekend before, forced a turnover in the Maine zone, got the puck
back, and rifled it into the top-right corner of the net. 4–0 Northeastern.
Sophomore phenom Alina
Mueller, already with two assists on the night, decided she might as well get
in on the scoring with 8:05 left in the period. She chased Maine goaltender
Loryn Porter from the game with a five-hole goal. 5–0 Northeastern.
Taking advantage of a power
play partway through the final period, Mueller added her second goal of the
night on a breakaway to conclude the Huskies’ scoring on the night. Maine got
one back when Tereza Vanisova got behind the Northeastern defense and fooled goaltender
Aerin Frankel with a slick deke, but it too little, too late for the Black
Bears (2–2–1, 0–1–0 HE). The game ended at 6-1.
What more can you say about
Mueller at this point? Through four games, the reigning Hockey East Player of
the Week has netted three four-point games. Kendall Coyne, the only Northeastern
player to win the Patty Kazmaier Award as the best player in women’s college
hockey, had just eight points through four games the season she won the award.
If she continues this elite level of play, Mueller — who was a top-10 candidate
last year — will be in the conversation at season’s end.
Also impressing were
Aurard, who tallied two assists and a goal, and senior captain Paige Capistran,
who notched two assists of her own. Aurard now has seven points on three goals
and four assists, second on the team behind Mueller in each category.
Frankel was stellar in net
once again, saving 24 of 25 shots. The Huskies’ chief netminder now has a
staggering .944 save percentage on the season to go along with a 1.28 GAA.
Northeastern will make the
trek back to Boston for Sunday’s home opener against New Hampshire (3–1–2,
2–0–1 HE). Two updated banners recognizing the team’s Hockey East regular
season and playoff titles will be raised to the rafters. Puck drop is scheduled
for 3 PM at Matthews Arena.