Boston College Women’s Hockey dropped the puck on their 2021-2022 campaign on Thursday and Friday this week against Penn State, and while there was plenty of early season rust to be worked out, the Eagles came away with a pair of 2-1 victories over the Nittany Lions to start the year 2-0-0.
After one of their best seasons in program history last year, Penn State opened this season ranked #9 in the country before dropping out of the top ten with a 0-1-1 weekend against St. Lawrence last week. Having the two game head start on BC seems to have made a difference, though, as Penn State outshot BC pretty handily in both contests — 37-25 in game one and 34-17 in game two. But it was the Eagles who came up with the timely goals and huge saves to win both games.
Boston College needed overtime to win on Thursday despite taking a 1-0 lead early in the second period. Penn State tied the game late in the third period, but freshman Abby Newhook poked in a Kelly Browne shot early in 3 on 3 overtime to claim the season opening victory for BC.
Game two played out a little differently with Penn State scoring early to take the quick lead, but BC tied it up just a few minutes later on Caroline Goffredo’s first career goal. Hannah Bilka picked the corner from long range in the second period to put BC ahead 2-1, and that’s where the score would remain until the final whistle.
Easily the most important development on the weekend, though, was goaltender Abbey Levy putting a total lock on her claim as the #1 goaltender. She finished the 2020-2021 season strong, but her first two games this season were the two best of her career at BC. Penn State’s shot count was evidence enough, but Levy made tons of big stops in key situations and was arguably the only reason the Eagles were able to come away from either game with a victory. If she’s going to play like this all year, BC is going to be able to steal some big games when they aren’t playing their best, like they did this weekend.
The Eagles will play a one-off game next Saturday at Merrimack to open the Hockey East schedule, where they’ll look to keep the early season winning streak alive.