Huskies look to clinch first round bye
Published: Thursday, February 28, 2013
Updated: Thursday, February 28, 2013 22:02
The UConn women’s ice hockey team will travel to division rival, No. 4 Boston University, for the quarterfinal round of the Hockey East playoffs.
In the last two meetings between these teams – the final two games of the regular season – the output was nothing short of physical.
In the first of their final two games, UConn led 4-1 after the first period but dropped a 7-5 decision on the road. In the final game, UConn was down 4-1 with time expiring and were being taunted from the bench by many BU players. Sophomore Kayla Campero quieted the howls coming from the Terriers’ bench with a goal to make it 4-2 with five seconds left in the game.
“We have to bring that intensity of a winning attitude to be successful, especially being a playoff game,” Head Coach Heather Linstad said.
UConn has had no problem scoring against BU, as they have posted nine goals in their three games this season vs. BU.
“We can score against them,” Linstad said. “We’ve played them and scored on them; we’ve averaged three goals a game against them and that’s pretty good. We have to play tough defensively and keep them from putting the puck in the net.”
The Huskies surrendered 15 goals to BU in those three games, as freshman netminder Elaine Chuli made 114 saves in those games.
“We have to eliminate their opportunities,” Linstad said. “We did a good job on the penalty kill the last few times we’ve played them. We have to just be more aggressive and better in our defensive zone and create more opportunities for ourselves. If we’re creating the offense that we should be and keeping them back on their heels and playing great two-way hockey, we will be successful.”
The Terriers were Hockey East Champions last season as they coasted through the competition in the first two rounds with a 9-1 victory over New Hampshire, and a 5-2 victory over Boston College. The final round was a little more strenuous for BU, as they were taken into double overtime, but came out with a 2-1 win over Providence.
UConn, not being in the playoffs last season, made their last appearance in the postseason in 2011, dropping a 4-0 decision to Northeastern.
The Huskies finished their regular season this year at 3-28-3, 1-19-1 in Hockey East play.
“Everyone has the same record, winner moves on, loser goes home,” Linstad said. “If you want to have success and win the Hockey East Championship you have to win every game.”
This will be UConn’s first matchup in the playoffs with BU since 2010, where they faced off in the Hockey East Championship game, and the Terriers took the crown with a 2-1 victory over the Huskies in overtime.