The BC Women's Hockey class of 2014 has tasted Beanpot victory once before, but not since their freshman year. Tuesday night at Conte Forum, they bookended their college careers with a 3-0 victory over #15 Northeastern to complete the 2014 Beanpot sweep for BC men's and women's hockey.
Those seniors would be involved all night.
Goal #1 (GWG) -- 16:02 of the 1st period: Taylor Wasylk (Unassisted)
BC 1, NU 0
Senior #1: Taylor Wasylk.
After dominating the first period and taking 10 of the first 11 shots of the game, the first was coming to a close with frustration starting to creep in. After this weekend's awful loss to lowly UConn in which they took 45 shots but couldn't find the back of the net, it was starting to look like deja vu all over again with some of the saves that NU goaltender Chloe Desjardins was making.
That all changed on a big Northeastern mistake late in the period. A failed Husky clear found its way onto the stick of Wasylk and she takes a beauty of a snipe into the far corner to give BC the 1-0 lead.
The second period was more BC, but neither team would score. The Huskies did manage to have some good chances, including hitting a post, but the score would remain 1-0 into the third period.
After quite a bit of up and down play in the first two periods, both teams started to bog down a little bit in the third. Then, Northeastern started taking penalties, and the Eagles would capitalize.
Goal #2 (PPG) -- 10:23 of the 3rd period: Meagan Mangene (Emily Field, Andie Anastos)
BC 2, NU 0
Senior #2: Meagan Mangene.
BC's power play seems to do its best against an aggressive penalty killing team. Northeastern appeared to do that on this goal, with each player defending their player pretty tight. Field is able to get the puck over to Mangene who finds space because of that aggressive NU PK, and she takes the opportunity to walk into a high percentage scoring area at the top of the slot to score a really nice wrister for the insurance goal.
And for all the complaining I've been doing about the BC power play (which leads Hockey East and is 5th in the nation, so maybe Coach Crowley knows a little bit more than I do about hockey), they did a good job of shutting me up tonight with a second PPG a little later.
Goal #3 (PPG) -- 15:15 of the 3rd period: Melissa Bizzari (Andie Anastos, Emily Pfalzer)
BC 3, NU 0 -- FINAL
Senior #3: Melissa Bizzari.
I really like this power play, and for a couple of reasons.
First of all, I like that they are passing with a purpose. This is obviously a set play that doesn't quite go according to plan (I'm not sure Bizzari was trying to score on that shot), but setting up the play from the goal line like this sets up a couple of nice options.
First, Bizzari can of course just take a sharp angle shot, like she did here. More than likely, she was looking for a rebound, but it went in. Obviously, no complaints there. But if she's looking for a rebound, she has three other Eagles crashing the net from every angle ready to pounce on it.
Second, if she wanted to, she could have just made a pass to one of those net-crashing Eagles. Haley McLean, who ended up right in Desjardin's face when the puck went in, would have been a good option, as the NU defender left her to play Bizzari. Field was ready on the other side of the net on the backhand as well. Lots of options.
Finally, you have Pfalzer at the blue line who would have been another great option. With everyone else crashing the net, everyone leaves Pfalzer alone up top since she's the least of NU's worries. She's outside of the frame by the end of the play, but she is able to drift in a bit since there is no one within 15 yards of her. Bizzari could have sent the puck right back up to the high slot where Pfalzer was waiting, and she would have had an opportunity similar to Mangene's on the 2nd goal -- and possibly an even better one, given how much room she would have had -- to glide in and take a high-percentage shot from the high slot.
Lots and lots of options. Love the execution on this power play.
That's the last of the scoring, but it would be a crime for me not to mention Senior #4 on the night, Corinne Boyles. After having zero shutouts through the first 22 games of the season, the Eagles now have 3 in their last 7 games, all on the back of Ms. Boyles, who has not-so-quietly climbed into the top 5 in the nation in save percentage after lingering in the bottom half of those rankings for much of the season. That's an incredible climb. She's given up just 5 goals in the last 5 games and has allowed 2 goals or less in 14 of her last 15. She is getting hot at the perfect time.
BC heads up to Maine to play the last play team in Hockey East, and can clinch the Hockey East regular season title with a sweep over the Black Bears. Hopefully there is no repeat of this weekend's slip-up against UConn, but as bad as the Huskies are, Maine is even worse, allowing far and away the most goals of any team in the conference.
Highlights from the Beanpot championship are below. Both Beanpots now reside in Chestnut Hill!