The independent student newspaper of Northeastern University

The Huntington News

The independent student newspaper of Northeastern University

The Huntington News

The independent student newspaper of Northeastern University

The Huntington News

First-minute tallies lift No. 15 Northeastern over Wildcats

Jules+Constantinople+protects+the+puck+from+a+pursuing+UNH+player.+Northeastern+beat+the+Wildcats+2-1+in+Fridays+game.+
Elizabeth Scholl
Jules Constantinople protects the puck from a pursuing UNH player. Northeastern beat the Wildcats 2-1 in Friday’s game.

Strike hard. Strike fast. Get on the board. That was the mission of the No. 15 Northeastern women’s hockey team (15-9-1, 9-7-1 HE) when it hosted the University of New Hampshire Wildcats (10-12-2, 7-8-2 HE) Friday night in the Huskies’ first home game since November — and it paid off. The Huskies scored twice in the first 51 seconds of the game and that was all they needed to secure the victory. 

Before the Wildcats had a chance to settle into their skates, Northeastern fired up its engines. Fifteen seconds into the game, off the draw, graduate student forward Peyton Anderson fired in a low shot from the high slot, beating UNH freshman goalie Sedona Blair glove-side and putting the home team on the board. 

Thirty-six seconds later, freshman forward Allie Lalonde followed suit. Sophomore forward Holly Abela sent a cross-ice pass to Lalonde and the freshman wasted no time burying the puck in the same spot as Anderson. 

“Our line got one on the first shift and the second line got it on the first shift too, so it was a big start for us,” Anderson said.

The early lead paid off, as the Wildcats increased their intensity when the game progressed. They pressured Northeastern’s blue line and held a physical presence along the boards, forcing turnovers and pushing the Huskies back into their own zone. 

After winning an offensive zone faceoff, UNH freshman forward Sydney Leonard swept the puck into the crease. It bounced up and graduate student forward Annie Berry caught it with her body and jammed it past Northeastern fifth-year goaltender Gwyneth Philips to cut the Huskies’ lead in half.

The Huskies continued to generate chances throughout the remainder of the period, creating quick opportunities in transition, but got pinned along the outskirts of the zone when they tried to settle into an offensive rotation. 

In the second period, UNH cut into those Northeastern transitions, eliminating the bulk of the Huskies’ scoring chances. However, Northeastern’s blue line held fast. The top pairing of graduate student Megan Carter and senior Lily Yovetich didn’t let anything near the net, with Carter even holding off a dangerous three-on-one.

“They played really hard, they moved the puck well,” Anderson said. “They definitely got us a couple times with their transition, but we turned it around in that second period and kind of got that momentum back.”

The strong Huskies defense persisted on the penalty kill. There were only two penalties in the 60 minutes, both against Northeastern — a hooking call on Carter and an interference minor on junior defender Tori Mariano. 

Despite the skater-advantage, the Wildcats struggled to gain control of the zone and Northeastern just seemed to grow stronger. In each of its two power plays, UNH only got one solid shot on goal and Northeastern pumped up the pressure the same way the Wildcats had been doing all game long.

Lily Yovetich and Gwyneth Philips watch as the Huskies and Wildcats fight over the puck. Philips made 24 saves through 60 minutes of play. (Elizabeth Scholl)

Although the night’s goals only came in the first few minutes of play, Northeastern wasn’t without its chances. 

The Huskies nearly earned another tally early in the second period when Carter sent a puck through traffic and sophomore forward Lily Shannon got the final touch to put it in the back of the net. However, UNH challenged the goal, claiming goalie interference and won the case, settling the score back at 2-1. 

Despite the Huskies immediate momentum in the match, the third period was when Northeastern really broke out.

After being outshot by the Wildcats through the first two periods, Northeastern came back to double UNH’s shots on goal in the third. Time and time again, the Huskies had the perfect cross-ice setup, and although there were players on the backdoor, they just couldn’t get the right angle to tap it in. 

In the final few minutes of play, Northeastern dominated. The team poured shot after shot on Blair and the Wildcats struggled to get out of their own zone. The Huskies were quick on the rebound, picking up every loose puck and catching them with their bodies to keep it in possession.

With a minute and a half to go, and Northeastern possessing in its defensive zone, UNH made the dangerous decision to pull Blair out of net. However, the Wildcats stayed physical and pressured the Huskies for the puck, eliminating their chances of an empty-netter. Fighting back against the aggressive six-on-five, Northeastern was able to run down the clock and maintain the lead. 

“Good teams find ways to win even when they’re not playing their best,” said Northeastern head coach Dave Flint. “We found a way to win and get the three points”

The Huskies now have a major occasion to look ahead to: the first-ever Women’s Beanpot Championship at TD Garden. Tuesday night at 8 p.m., the Huskies will make history as they take on Boston University for the title. 

About the Contributors
Amelia Ballingall, Sports Editor
Amelia Ballingall is a third-year speech language pathology and audiology major. She is sports editor for The News and previously served as deputy sports editor and deputy design editor. She is also Vice President of Membership Development for Delta Phi Epsilon, the social media manager for Speech and Hearing Club, and a Student Success Guide on campus. Amelia is looking forward to another great semester with The News!
Elizabeth Scholl, Deputy Photo Editor
Elizabeth Scholl is a second-year pharmaceutical sciences major with a minor in business administration. She currently serves as one of the deputy photo editors for The News. Her favorite events to photograph include sports, concerts and anything The News needs last minute.
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