Oct. 17, 2007
Sophomore goaltender Molly Schaus has recorded a 0.99 goals-against average this season in leading the Eagles to a 3-0-0 record. Last year, the Natick, Mass., resident set the school record for single-season saves with 866. Schaus and the Eagles travel to Princeton to face the Tigers on Oct. 19 at 7 p.m.
Last year, the Eagles received an NCAA bid for the first time in the program's history and played in the Frozen Four against Minnesota-Duluth. What do you think are the team's keys to success to make it back this season?
Last year was a great experience. I think we all learned a lot from being there. I think it's going to take a lot of hard work this year. A lot of teams are gunning for us now since we did make it that far, so there's some added pressure there. The keys will be a lot of hard work every day at practice, focusing on the small things, taking one game at a time, and knowing that every win is just as important as the others. It's going to take a lot of work and I think we're ready for it.
Although Coach King has been with the team for five seasons, this is her first year as head coach. How has it been with her at the helm?
I think we've all transitioned really well under Coach King. She's been great this year. Her main thing for our team is handling pucks and that's going to be huge for our success this year in all zones. With Coach King and Coach Kennedy, they have both been to the Olympics, and you're not going to find many coaches that have had that much playing experience. So it's limitless how much information they can give us. We're really learning a lot from them.
Talk about new assistant coach Courtney Kennedy. What does she bring to the team?
She's been great. She's the defensive coach. She played defense in the Olympics. That's really helpful because last year Coach King was the defensive coach, but she was a forward when she played. So now we're kind of specialized for each position, which has been great. They work very well together. They're best friends, so that shows on and off the ice. They keep it professional, but at the same time, they like to have a lot of fun. Coach Kennedy really keeps it light around the rink. She's a lot of fun.
What is the team doing to prepare for this Friday night's away game at Princeton?
We don't play them often, so it's definitely an opponent we're not very familiar with. They haven't started their season yet, so it's kind of an unknown. We don't know what their systems are or anything. We're really focusing on how we're playing, cleaning it up from last weekend, especially in our defensive zone. We're focusing on ourselves and getting better each day. I think we'll be fine.
Is the team working on anything in particular during practice? What do you practice as a goaltender?
We're definitely working on the defensive zone, picking up people in front of the net, making sure we have everyone covered. Every day we do handling pucks, working on bad passes, trying to control those passes out of the zone. We're focused on making sure we can clean up our end of the ice. Every day at the beginning of practice, I go with Coach Kennedy and the other goalie and we do a few drills - rebound control, playing the puck out of the net. Each practice, I pick one thing that I'm going to focus on for that day. It may be rebounds or playing the puck or just getting up on the right leg. They're just little things that can make a big difference in a game.
What has it been like mentoring freshman goalie Amanda Rothschild?
I've actually known her for a couple of years because we went to the same high school, we played club team together. It's been really fun having her around. It's different because last year I was the freshman looking up to the sophomore. I'm sure it's the same thing; she's coming in looking up to me. I think we're just good friends, we work together on the ice. If I see something, I'll point it out, and then she'll point something out to me. It's been fun.
The seventh-ranked Eagles play their first Hockey East game against third-ranked New Hampshire at home next Thursday. Talk about the importance of this game.
It's definitely a big game. We're very excited to play UNH. It's always a great game. It's a tough way to start our Hockey East schedule. I didn't realize that was our first conference game. Hockey East is a great league, so we want to start off with a victory, since we only play about 20 league games. Every game counts and if we want to be No. 1 at the end, which is our goal, this is a good way to start.
You racked in the accolades last season as a freshman and set the school's record for most saves in a season (866) and lowest GAA (1.90). What did you do in the off-season to prepare for this year?
I was here four days a week working out with the strength coach. A couple of teammates stuck around for the whole thing, so that was great. I just worked on lifting, getting stronger everywhere because I came in having never touched weights before. So that was a big focus, trying to get core strength and a lot of leg strength. Coming into this season, I'm just trying to take one game at a time. I don't get caught up in the numbers, trying to do whatever, because that doesn't even matter. It's about winning, so I just have to focus on one game at a time.
You currently lead the Hockey East in goals-against average (0.99) and save percentage (.966). This is a credit to you and your teammates. Talk about your defensemen.
They're great. They always stick up for me in front of the net. It's unbelievable. We have a lot of defensemen this year, seven or eight, and they're all very strong, they're all learning. They've been doing a great job. Maggie Taverna is one of the best skaters I've ever seen, but they're all doing very well, so it's fun.
Talk about some teammates that you think are stepping up their game this year.
We had a couple of injured players last year, so we have Shannon Webster and Colleen Harris back. When I came in I had never really seen them play, so it's kind of the first time I've seen them. I think they're both doing great coming back and playing on the team. Megan Keever was also injured last year. I think everyone took the off-season very seriously and they all came back ready to go, so it's been impressive from the goal out.
Talk about the triple-overtime victory against Harvard in the semifinal game of the 2007 Beanpot when you set the NCAA record for most saves (73).
That game was a lot of fun. We knew going into it that it was going to be a tough game. We knew the importance of winning it for our NCAA chances. Everyone came ready to play. Everyone played unbelievably. We couldn't have done it with one less person because we played for so long. That was a big turning point for our team when we won that game. We really came together and realized how good we could be if we all worked together. I hope we never have to repeat that game, but there are a lot of good memories from that night.
What do you like to do when you're not on the ice or in the classroom?
Free time is very limited. I'm a big Red Sox fan, actually, so playoff season is tough because you have to watch all those games. Most of our team lives in Edmonds this year, so that's a lot of fun. We hang out and play a lot of Mario Kart.
What is the best thing about playing for Boston College?
There are a lot of things. It's hard to pick one, but I think the teammates, just how close you get to them. You spend every day with them. It's been an unbelievable experience getting to be best friends with 23 other kids. The moment you step on campus you're in a group and you have that for the four years. You always have someone to turn to. It's been a great experience.
Interview conducted by sophomore Geoffrey Kehlmann