Women's Hockey: Huskies head to Vermont with eye on upcoming playoffs

UConn women's ice hockey sophomore forward Theresa Knutson (middle) skates toward the net during the Huskies' game against Syracuse at the Freitas Ice Forum in Storrs, Connecticut on Saturday, Oct. 17, 2015. (Jason Jiang/The Daily Campus)

This weekend the UConn women’s hockey team (9-12-5) heads to Vermont (6-19-2) to take on their conference rivals this weekend.

Coming off of three straight losses, the Huskies used this week to refocus and begin gaining momentum before the playoffs start next month.

“We’re gonna rest and then focus and recharge before Vermont. This is the time of the year where practice is very short and intense,” head coach Chris MacKenzie said.

The Huskies defeated the Catamounts earlier this season 3-2 when the two teams faced off in Storrs.

Vermont is coming off of back-to-back losses to Boston College. Despite the losses, coach MacKenzie believes that the Catamounts are playing better than their record shows.

“They’re playing well right now; we have to find a combo of lines to create some offense,” MacKenzie said. “We have to get back to playing solid hockey, I think we just need to get rested and recharged.”

Senior Dayna Colang and sophomore Taylor Willard lead Vermont with 22 points (10 goals, 12 assists) and 14 points (7 goals, 7 assists), respectively, this season. Goaltender Madison Litchfield has also been very solid for the Catamounts.

“I don’t exactly know what to expect from this weekend. I know it is going to be tough and it’s going to be hard. We’ll have to see but I believe in my team,” MacKenzie said.

UConn has historically done very well against Vermont, winning the all-time series 22-7-2, including three of the last four games between the two dating back to last year.

The Huskies will continue to look to breakout stars Theresa Knutson and Justine Fredette who are tied for the team, lead with 21 points. Sophomore Leah Lum has also enjoyed somewhat of a breakout season with 13 points.

Two conference wins would be massive for the Huskies this weekend, as they look to improve their conference record.

“I’m pretty happy with what we’re doing. Obviously there are some moments where we could've done better; I'm not satisfied but I'm proud of my team and I'm happy with my team,” MacKenzie said.


Antonio Salazar is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at antonio.salazr@uconn.edu.