Boston College Women’s Hockey opened the second half of the season with a nice, stress-free win on Friday afternoon. After taking three weeks off for the holiday break, the Eagles returned to Conte Forum and cruised to a 5-3 win over Merrimack in the first game of a home-and-home against the Warriors.
Merrimack sits at the bottom of the Hockey East standings — and ended last season in last place as well — so BC knew going into this game that they had a bit of wiggle room if they didn’t play at the top of their game. Unfortunately, the Eagles did look like they were still getting up to speed from the holidays over the opening 10 minutes or so and it was Merrimack who found the back of the net on the power play to open the scoring at 1-0.
But the goal seemed to wake BC up. Deirdre Mullowney scored a few minutes later to bring the Eagles level before the period ended, and BC ended up tying the Warriors 9-9 in shots after starting well behind at the beginning of the frame.
Boston College carried that momentum into the second period and really found their legs. Willow Corson and Alexie Guay each found a goal in the period to put BC up 3-1, but they could have had more. The Eagles were all over Merrimack in the period and outshot the Warriors 17-5 over the middle twenty minutes.
Gaby Roy and Savannah Norcross each got a tally of their own early in the third period to make it 5-1, and it was just a matter of killing clock from there. The Eagles did let Merrimack climb a bit closer thanks to penalties that allowed the Warriors to score their 2nd and 3rd power play goals of the game, but this one was never in doubt as the buzzer sounded on the 5-3 final score.
It was a pretty bizarre game from a special teams perspective. BC came into the contest having killed 18 straight penalties, and Merrimack had gone the entire season without getting a power play goal — and yet the Warriors were able to find three against the Eagles. Just one of those games.
One thing of note in this one was that several Eagles were again missing from the lineup due to COVID protocols:
Unofficially, the live box for today's @BC_WHockey game vs. Merrimack appears to have 4 skaters & 2 goalies...— Grant Salzano (@Salzano14) January 8, 2021
Tulchinsky (F, Fr)
Klinoff (F, Fr)
Goffredo (F, Fr)
Fess (D, Fr)
Lavelle (G, Jr)
Levy (G, Jr)
...missing from the lineup for the Eagles https://t.co/fKeaUEfaHu
With how many teams are having games cancelled, BC’s probably just happy to get any matchup in the books even with a handful of players missing. Fortunately, with Merrimack on tap this weekend and Holy Cross up next, the Eagles can probably get by over the next couple weeks with a shorter bench.
The Eagles will head up to North Andover for the second leg of the home and home with Merrimack on Saturday afternoon. Puck drop is at 2pm with the game being streamed at CollegeSportsLive.com.