No. 4 WIH Begins WHEA Title Defense Against No. 9 BU on Saturday
March 1, 2012
Chestnut Hill, Mass. – The fourth-ranked Boston College women’s ice hockey team meets ninth-ranked Boston University in the 3:30 p.m. Hockey East Semifinal on Saturday, March 3 in the Hyannis Youth and Community Center in Hyannis, Mass. The game will be streamed live at hockeyeastonline.tv.
The defending champion Eagles (23-8-3, 15-4-2 Hockey East) earned the second seed and a first-round bye for the 2012 tournament after collecting 32 points in league play. BC will be the home team against the third-seed Terriers (21-13-1, 14-7-0 HE), who defeat New Hampshire, 9-1, to advance to Saturday’s matchup.
This will be the third meeting of the two programs since the inception of the tournament in 2003. In 2009, the Eagles topped the Terriers, 3-2, but turned in a losing effort in 2010, 1-3.
Boston College yielded the regular-season series to Boston University, losing two games and winning one. The Eagles were outscored, 11-4, despite outshooting their arch rivals, 99-74, in three contests. A key determinant in the semifinal will be BC’s league-leading power play, which has yet to score against BU in 18 chances.
BC was subject to a 6-0 loss at the hands of BU back on Jan. 25. Junior Taylor Holze posted three points (1g, 2a) and sophomore Kaleigh Fratkin registered two assists to halt the Eagles’ six-game unbeaten streak.
Boston College rides a five-game winning streak into this meeting with Boston University, who has won 10 of its last 11 skates. BC ignited its stretch with a 4-2 win over No. 8 Harvard at the 34th Annual Beanpot. The win occurred the same night as BU’s misstep against Northeastern, a 4-3 overtime loss, in the final.
Goalkeeper Corinne Boyles carries the nation’s eight best save percentage (.929). The Wheaton, Ill. native has amassed 846 saves this season, fourth most in school history. The junior’s 1.93 goals against average is ninth lowest in the country. Boyles opposition will likely be sophomore Kerrin Sperry, who boasts a .914 save percentage, a 2.49 GAA and has only given up more than two goals twice in the last 11 contests.
Freshmen Alex Carpenter and Emily Field lead the Eagles in scoring. Carpenter, the February Hockey East Rookie of the Month, has tagged opposing net-minders for 18 goals, adding 17 assists, while Field has racked up 10 scores and 18 helpers. The line mates have seven goals between them in the last four games, while junior Ashley Motherwell has nine points (4g, 5a) in the last six.
Defensemen Blake Bolden (7g, 10a), Emily Pfalzer (5g, 12a) and Dru Burns (3g, 14a) rank second in the conference for defensive scoring with 17 points each. They will lead an effort to stop BU’s offense that produces 3.20 goals per game.
Reigning Hockey East Player of the Week Jenn Wakefield leads the Terriers with 51 points (26g, 25a), followed by February’s Player of the Month Isabel Menard with 41 tallies (17g, 24a) and freshman Kayla Tutino with 33 (16g, 17a). Wakefield brings 200 career points into her final appearance at the league tournament. Last season, saw the host BU squad upset by Northeastern in the semifinal.
The winner of the BC/BU skate will meet the winner of the 12:30 semifinal on Sunday, March 4 at 1 p.m. The WHEA Championship Game will be broadcast on tape delay at 4:30 p.m. on NESN.