The UConn women’s hockey team has a chance to enact some revenge this weekend with back-to-back games vs. the New Hampshire Wildcats, who beat them in its only previous meeting this season.
The two schools met just four games into the regular season, and despite a trio of goals from Emily Reid, Briana Colangelo and Rebecca Lindblad, fell by a score of 5-3, largely due to the Wildcats scoring on two of their whopping eight power play opportunities while the Huskies were unable to score on any of their three.
Despite going only 8-9-4 so far this season and just 5-8-1 in the Hockey East the Wildcats have been on an absolute tear, going 2-0 in the second half of the season and 7-1-2 over their last ten games.
They are led by redshirt junior forward Taylor Wenczkowski, whose 14 points and 10 goals each lead the team. Behind her is a trio of forwards Nicole Dunbar, Carlee Turner and Lauren Martin who each have 11 points, Dunbar and Turner getting there on five goals and six assists while Martin got it done with just two goals but a team-leading nine assists.
As for UConn, sophomore Natalie Snodgrass leads the team in goals the second half of the season with six, including a hat trick in their most recent game vs. Holy Cross. This, combined with her 11 assists, has helped her capture the top spot in points for the Huskies with 20.
Sophomore Morgan Wabick and junior Catherine Crawley are right on her tail with 19 and 18 points respectively. Wabick’s nine goals is tied for the team lead with Snodgrass and Crawley’s 11 assists is also tied for the team lead with Snodgrass.
At the start of the second half of the season, head coach Chris MacKenzie noted what he believed would be important to their success.
“A big focus for us will be our transition game to both defense and offense,” MacKenzie said. “We’d like to continue our strong play in special teams.”
The Huskies are currently averaging over two more goals per game the second half of the season than they did the first half in what has been an impressive display of offense. They are giving up slightly less goals per game, which is also a good sign.
However, there is reason to be hesitant, as the two schools the Huskies have faced, Dartmouth and Holy Cross, have combined for just a 4-30-3 record. Seeing as New Hampshire has twice as many wins, it will be a much different challenge.
Each game will be on campus at the Freitas Ice Forum. The first will be Friday night at 6 and Saturday at 3 p.m.
Jorge Eckardt is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.