First home series a mixed bag for women’s hockey

On Oct. 16 and 17, the women’s hockey team kicked off their Hockey East schedule by taking on No. 8 Boston College in a back-to-back weekend series.

Although the team knew it would be a hard two games, they were looking forward to the challenge.

“They’re a very good team. We are feeling good about ourselves,” head coach Tim Bothwell said. “We know it’s going to be tough. They’ve got speed and talent. We need to find a way to create some offense.”

The first game of the weekend series ended in a disappointing 3-0 loss. The team tried to stay optimistic about Saturday’s game but they were unable to defeat the Eagles and when the final whistle blew, UVM had been beaten once again, 4-1.

The first half of Fridays first period went by scoreless, as UVM and Boston were both unable to get the puck in the net. But midway through the first period, Boston was on power play and, with a one man advantage was able to collect a rebound and put the puck past UVM’s sophomore goalkeeper Kelci Lanthier.

Boston then took a two-goal lead late in the second period. With less than two minutes remaining in the third period Boston sealed their win with a three-goal cushion.

On Oct. 17, Boston College took the lead once again in the first period. But this time Vermont was able to respond with a goal of their own. Vermont was on power play at the 16-minute mark of the first period when sophomore Emily Walsh scored off of a redirect from a shot by senior Saleah Morrison. With the game tied up, there was inspiration amongst the team for the remainder of the period leading into the second period. But, the Golden Eagles rallied for three goals in the second and third periods, ending the game with a 4-1 win. First year goalkeeper Roxanne Douville made 35 saves and senior Celeste Doucet earned an assist.

This past weekend Vermont hosted Yale University where they earned a 4-1 victory on Friday night and a 1-1 tie on Saturday afternoon. Friday night Doucet, who scored a goal and tallied an assist, led the team to their first win of the year. Seniors Teddy Fortin, Saleah Morrison and Peggy Wakeham all had goals for the Catamounts who took control of the game in the third period.

“Everyone stepped up their game and to be honest no one realized until the end of the game that it was all seniors who scored. I think everyone contributed to those goals, so it was a whole team effort,” Doucet said. “It was great to see that all the seniors were able to contribute in this game to get our first win.”

The Catamounts put the pressure on Yale all game with a strong offensive attack, outshooting Yale 33-18 including an 11-2 advantage in the third period.

“We knew we didn’t have a great second period so entering the third we knew we had to and get pucks in the net,” Wakeham said. “I really think that third goal relaxed us a lot.”

It was obvious that the forecheck was a focal point of Vermont’s strategy, and according to Bothwell it’s critical that the team continues it.

“We were really good on the forecheck for sustained periods, each period. And that’s really the strength of our team, it’s something we really focus on,” Bothwell said.

The success of the third period was a big momentum swing for the team as they finally broke out offensively for the first time this season — scoring three or more goals for only the second time.

The team tried to carry that momentum into the second game of the weekend against Yale and while the offense was dormant, they were able to secure a 1-1 tie.

Sophmore goaltender Kelci Lanthier made 23 saves and Wakeham scored her second goal of the season in the third period for Vermont’s only goal. With the tie Vermont moves to 1-2-3 overall as they prepare for their next series against Northeastern.