WOMEN'S HOCKEY: Punching Their Ticket
Eagles Advance To Frozen Four For Third Straigh Season
Published: Sunday, March 17, 2013
Updated: Sunday, March 17, 2013 21:03
The Boston College women’s hockey team advanced to the Frozen Four for the third year in a row with a 3-1 win over Harvard on Saturday. After falling 1-0 behind late in the first period, the Eagles took over the game and put in three unanswered goals to secure a win at Conte Forum.
The game opened with even play from both teams. Harvard generated a number of chances, but BC goalie Corinne Boyles stayed strong for the majority of the period. The Crimson struck first, however, when Mary Parker took a wrist shot on the power play that found its way into the back of the net.
Their lead lasted only a minute however, when Haley Skarupa saw a great individual effort end with some good fortune. She carried the puck into the offensive zone and got past a Harvard defender before losing the puck and seeing it trickle into the net. BC coach Katie King Crowley summed up the effort, and the game, as best as she could.
“Our kids really beared down and created some of those opportunities themselves,” Crowley said. “Whether they were pretty or not.”
After the first period, the game was all BC. Caitlin Walsh took a soft wrist shot just a few minutes into the second that found its way past Harvard goalie Emerance Maschmeyer, and BC took a lead that they would never surrender.
The goal was just the third of the year for Walsh, but it proved to be a massive momentum swinger against a goalie who had been allowing just over one goal per game for the season. As Crowley said, the goals were not a result of just one good play, but a solid team effort that was noticeable in all areas.
“I thought our first forecheckers were great, on every line, which really helped keep them in their zone when we needed to,’’ said BC head coach Katie King Crowley. “And I thought that led to our goals and led to the positive energy.’’
After Walsh’s goal, the Eagles seemed much more comfortable and solid defensively. Harvard managed some decent shots, but overall BC stayed very strong in their own zone. Then, with five minutes left in the second period, Alex Carpenter netted her 32nd goal of the season to put the Eagles up 3-1.
The goal came off of a tipped shot, when defenseman Blake Bolden took a shot through traffic that Carpenter was able to get to. It was a back-breaking goal for the Crimson, but as Bolden said, it was much more than a case of Carpenter being in the right place at the right time.
“I knew if I shot it, it was probably going to get blocked,’’ Bolden said. “I saw [Carpenter] busting her butt to get to the net so I just threw it at her, and I knew most likely she would put it in the net.’’
The win puts the Eagles back in the Frozen Four for the third consecutive year. Despite being outshot 31-24, BC put up a number of great chances and watched Boyles make some great stops to propel them to victory. During the win, Bolden notched her 82nd point on her career, moving her within one for the all-time record for a BC defenseman.
The win sets up a massive Frozen Four contest with top-ranked Minnesota. Minnesota is unbeaten in 39 games this season, and BC is 1-4-1 all time against the Golden Gophers. However, it took Minnesota three overtimes to beat North Dakota in the quarterfinals. The matchup will take place on Mar. 22 at Minnesota’s home rink while the other semifinals matchup, Mercyhurst and Boston University, will take place on the same date.