Two Hockey East rivals took the ice on Tuesday in Chestnut Hill with No. 14 Connecticut visiting No. 15 Boston College for their third meeting this season.
In their only series this season, Connecticut walked away with both games, winning 1-0 and 3-1. This resulted in a rare home loss for Boston College who have really defended its home ice well.
UConn’s offense has been amazing since their return from break, scoring 11 times in just three games. Forward Brooke Campbell was awarded Hockey East Rookie of the Week with one goal and 20 faceoff wins. Not only that, the goaltending has been solid as well with Megan Warrener being named December’s Hockey East Goaltender of the Month and Tia Chan being named to the HCA Goalie of the Year watchlist. Riding a four-game win streak, the Huskies looked to come in and continue to dominate their opponents, but Boston College wasn’t going to make it easy for them.
The Eagles came in at 8-1 in their last nine games with their lone loss coming in overtime against Northeastern. Not only was Boston College racking up wins, they were collecting awards too. Abigail Levy was awarded Hockey East Goaltender of the Week and Deirde Mullowney was named Hockey East Defender of the Week, making significant impacts on the team’s recent games.
The key coming into the game was the team’s ability to kill penalties. UConn ranked No. 5 (.904) in the nation with Boston College just one spot behind them at No. 6 (.902). Powerplay goals have played a vital role in the Huskies’ recent successes, with one in each of their last two games and 10 all season, but it would be tough against a solid Eagles defense.
Defense was put to the test early when UConn’s Ava Rinker was sent to the box for tripping during the first period. The Huskies held it down and were able to kill the first power play of the game, keeping the game scoreless after one.
Next was Boston College’s Hannah Bilka going to the box for slashing in the second period to put the Eagles’ defense to the test. Nothing came of the opportunity, proving just how hard it would be for teams to score.
In total there were five powerplay chances combined, three for UConn and two for Boston College, but no goals were scored during those opportunities.
Husky Jada Habisch broke the tie late in the second period, beating out the defenders to go one-on-one versus the goalie, scoring her team-leading eighth goal of the season in the process.
The Eagles weren’t down for long, as Cayla Barnes scored early in the third period to retie the game at one a piece.
Habisch put the Huskies on top yet again under six minutes, her ninth goal of the year.
In Cam Wong’s 100th career game, the Husky scored an empty net goal as time expired in the contest to put the icing on the cake for UConn, extending the lead to 3-1.
With the win, UConn swept Boston College in all three of its scheduled matchups this season. This was only the Eagles fourth home loss this season, two of which came at the hands of the Connecticut Huskies.
UConn continues its recent offensive onslaught with another three-goal game. Megan Warrener got her fourth straight win behind goal in another great performance. She made a big difference in this game, including an impressive save in the middle of the second period facing Hannah Bilka all alone and preventing what would have been the first score of the game.
Habisch has cemented herself in this Huskies lineup and is crucial to the team’s scoring. She needs just four more goals this season to tie the career high she set last year and seems as if she’s going to break that with ease.
This extends UConn’s win streak to five straight victories and its 10th in Hockey East play. Despite Connecticut being ranked ahead of the Eagles, they remain above the Huskies in the Hockey East with their 12 division wins so far.
Connecticut takes on a New England rival Providence this Friday in Rhode Island at 6 p.m. The game is available for viewing on ESPN+.