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



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Second-period rally pushes Northeastern to victory in conference quarterfinal

Kayla Shiao
Katy Knoll goes five-hole against Calli Hogarth. Knoll’s goal was the game-winner in the Hockey East quarterfinal matchup against Merrimack.

Tournament season is upon us, and it’s the first time in five years Northeastern isn’t starting out on top. However, if there’s one thing the Huskies have shown this season, it’s that they won’t let one minor setback get in the way of their success.

After clinching the second seed in the Hockey East standings — and earning an opening round bye — the Northeastern women’s hockey team opened up its conference tournament play with a quarterfinal matchup against Merrimack College at home Saturday night. Despite a slow start, the Huskies rallied with a dominant performance, crushing the Warriors 4-1.

The Huskies celebrates Ella Blackmore’s goal. Northeastern defeated Merrimack 4-1 at home. (Kayla Shiao)

In the first period, Northeastern struggled to find a way to the net of Merrimack sophomore goaltender Calli Hogarth, notching just four shots to the Warriors’ eight. 

But after the first intermission, the energy on the ice exploded. If Merrimack thought that the four attempts from the first period would be Northeastern’s pace for the night, they were fatally wrong. The Huskies notched 35 shots throughout the rest of the game, and their pressure paid off.

Merrimack broke open the scoring a minute and a half into the second period when sophomore forward Alex Ferguson tipped in a deflection out front. The Warriors came into the zone fast; redshirt fifth-year Celine Tedenby took the puck down the right flank and Ferguson only needed a quick touch to send it into the back of the net. 

Northeastern responded quickly. Four minutes after Ferguson’s goal, Huskies sophomore forward Skylar Irving evened the score. Irving picked up the loose puck in the neutral zone and brought it all the way to the left faceoff circle, where she flicked it into the back of the net, using sophomore defender Ashlyn Kroes as a screen.

With one goal under their belt and momentum in their favor, it didn’t take long for the Huskies to break through to a lead. Just seconds after dominating a two-minute penalty kill with freshman forward Peyton Compton in the box, fifth-year forward Katy Knoll tallied the game-winner with help from Irving and graduate student defender Megan Carter. Irving sent Knoll the stretch pass, and Knoll put on the jets, racing past Merrimack’s backchecking efforts to put one past Hogarth at close range. 

Immediately, Merrimack senior defender Raice Szott was sent to the box for hooking and Northeastern’s offensive pressure really began to show. The Warriors barely had time to recover as graduate student defender Teghan Inglis’ boarding minor two minutes later sent them right back to the player deficit. 

Back in 5-on-5 play, Northeastern continued to outplay Merrimack for the rest of the night. Late in the third period, the Huskies’ third line got in on the action with a goal from freshman Ella Blackmore. 

A close chance from sophomore forward Holly Abela was blocked by Hogarth, but sophomore forward Lily Shannon kept the puck right in the midst of the commotion. Blackmore seized the opportunity, finding a spot stick-side and firing to put Northeastern up 3-1. 

Three minutes later, Irving put the icing on the cake with an empty-netter, scoring her twelfth goal of the year. 

What Northeastern had been missing in its game against the University of Vermont last weekend, they made up for against Merrimack. After struggling to get past a solid Vermont defense, the Huskies put an emphasis on their hallmark speed and agility to ensure they wouldn’t meet the same fate against the Warriors. And with the first two goals being scored in transition — and a three-goal win to boot — that change paid off. 

With the quarterfinal win comes a short turnaround time, as the Huskies will face the University of New Hampshire Wednesday night. Northeastern swept its regular season series with the Wildcats, but with a one-goal differential in all of them, including two overtime victories, each was a close game. As the higher-seeded team, the Huskies will have the home-ice advantage when the puck drops for the pair’s fourth matchup of the season Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. 

About the Contributors
Amelia Ballingall
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!
Kayla Shiao
Kayla Shiao, Design Editor
Kayla Shiao (she/her) is a first-year Doctor of Pharmacy student and Design Editor. Prior to becoming Design Editor, she worked for The News as a designer, copy editor, photographer and occasional writer. She is an avid sports photographer with a love for detail and page layout.
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