Murphy’s hat trick gives Northeastern women their first Beanpot Consolation Game victory since 2005


Kayla Shiao

Northeastern and Boston University face off against each other to gain possession of the puck.

Eli Curwin, News Staff

In a 3-0 shutout Tuesday against the Boston University Terriers, senior forward Maureen Murphy’s hat trick led Northeastern University women’s ice hockey team to victory. With five goals in the last two games, Murphy leads the team with 20 goals scored and 38 points for the season. 

Despite a slow first period, shooting only four shots on goal, Northeastern turned it around, ending the game with 37 shots. The Huskies defense was perfect all game, allowing only eight shots in the first period, two shots in the second period, and four shots in the third period. With a game total of 14 shots from the Terriers, the Huskies held the Terriers to their second lowest shot total all season. 

Following a shocking loss to the Boston College Eagles in the semifinals of the 43rd Beanpot Tournament Feb. 1, Northeastern was fighting for 3rd place against the Terriers. Totaling 50 shots against the Eagles, Northeastern’s offense only found the back of the net once in the first round of the tournament. However, after a 5-0 win against Merrimack College Feb. 4 in between the Beanpot games, Northeastern’s offense is back on track. 

Continuing to play their games without star senior forward Alina Mueller, who is representing Switzerland in the 2022 Winter Olympics, the Huskies needed to adopt a next-man-up mentality. On Monday, that is exactly what happened. From backup junior goaltender Gwneyth Philips to Murphy, every player on the team came ready to play no matter how much ice time they’ve seen this season. 

Philips was in goal for the Huskies, replacing arguably the best goalie in the NCAA, Aerin Frankel. Before the final stretch of the season, coach Dave Flint decided it would be best to give Frankel a rest. Philips was flawless for the Huskies, saving all 14 of Boston University’s shots. 

With Husky junior forward Katy Knoll winning the faceoff, the game immediately began as a close back and forth. Filled with breakaways and transition offense, neither team was able to take many shots. The Huskies only managed one shot on goal in the first 10 minutes of the game. The Terrier’s offense was able to muster some promising possessions, but effective defense from the Huskies prevented a BU goal. 

About halfway through the first period, a hooking penalty on BU senior forward Emma Wuthrich gave Northeastern a power play. With 31 power play goals this season, the most in the NCAA, playing with an extra skater is Northeastern’s bread and butter. After passing the puck around the zone for a while, a shot from graduate student left defenseman Skylar Fontaine was saved by Boston University’s senior netminder Nicole McGuigan. Retaining possession, graduate student forward Maddie Mills dropped the puck off for Fontaine, sending a beautiful pass across the ice to Murphy, who scored the easy goal. 

Despite the uncharacteristically weak start, Northeastern was able to maintain their 1-0 lead for the rest of the period. Only tallying four shots, it was Philips and their swarming defense that kept them ahead. 

Even with a late power play for the Terriers due to a Northeastern hooking penalty, the Huskies remained solid on defense. BU only attempted one shot on goal, while Northeastern kept the puck out of the zone for most of the two minutes. 

The second period started with a Terrier slashing penalty, knocking Philips to the ground. With an extra skater, the Huskies looked to add to their lead. At first, Northeastern struggled to keep possession of the puck, as a disciplined Boston University defense dumped the puck multiple times within the first minute. As the power play continued, Northeastern did a better job of keeping the puck, but crucial play from McGuigan prevented a 2-0 lead. 

Midway through the second period, the Huskies organized their offense with a long possession filled with smart and calculated passes. With several shots blocked or saved, Northeastern was unable to capitalize.

Following Northeastern’s failure to score, the Terriers secured the puck and took it down to the Huskies zone. After a missed BU shot, Murphy collected the puck, and made her way up the ice. Weaving through several Boston University defenders, Murphy was able to break away and score a backhanded goal to give the Huskies a 2-0 lead. 

The Huskies offense started to take control of the game, forcing McGuian to make difficult saves and taking eight shots in the eight minutes following the goal. The Huskies first period offensive woes seemed to be behind them. 

A high sticking and a cross checking penalty seven minutes later caused the second and third power plays of the night for the Terriers. Impressive Northeastern defense managed to kill both advantages. With a top 10 power play kill percentage (91.6%), going against an extra skater on the ice had little effect on the Huskies. Despite a brief period of four-on-four with a minute left in the period, due to an elbowing penalty on Boston University senior forward Mackenna Parker, the period would end 2-0.

Starting the period already down a skater, a tripping penalty on Boston University put them in a dangerous five on three situation. As Parker returned to the ice, Boston University nearly scored, but a vital save from Philips kept the Huskies power play alive. Following two saved Northeastern shots, and passes from Fontaine and junior defenseman Megan Carter, Murphy whipped a shot between the legs of a Terrier into the top left shelf of the goal, giving her a hat trick. 

While Murphy played it cool, most likely because scoring is nothing new to her, a hat trick in the Beanpot is both rare, and worth celebrating. 

After the score, Boston University came back with a vengeance, trying to cut down on the strong Husky lead. Exemplary play in the goal from Philips prevented any Terrier goals. Further, fantastic defensive play from the Huskies mitigated a Terrier power play, following a Northeastern slashing penalty. 

A breakaway miraculously stopped by Fontaine, and a kill following a Knoll roughing penalty sealed the victory for the Huskies. This is the first Husky Beanpot consolation game victory for Northeastern since 2005, where they defeated Boston University 4-0. 

With the Beanpot finished, the Huskies will look ahead to the rest of the regular season and beyond. They will continue to fight for a higher spot in the Pairwise rankings and maintain their spot in the Hockey East.

Northeastern has series against University of Maine and University of Connecticut, with a matchup against University of New Hampshire in between. With these five games left, the Huskies are almost a lock for a playoff spot as they sit atop the Hockey East.

Northeastern will play Maine at Matthews Arena on Feb. 11. Boston University will play at University of Vermont, also on Feb. 11.

As Northeastern looks to make up for their disappointing 2-1 loss against University of Wisconsin in the 2021 National Championship, they must play with consistency through all three periods as the stakes get higher. With Mueller being eventually added back to the roster, Northeastern has their eyes set on goals far greater than a Beanpot trophy.