The University of New Hampshire women’s hockey team, ranked third in both national polls, takes a 13-2-1 overall record into Saturday’s matchup against the University of Vermont (2-11-2). Game time at the Whittemore Center is 7 p.m.
    UNH has won all 12 meetings, including three last season, in the series against Vermont. The Wildcats were 5-0 and 8-0 victors here at the Whittemore Center in last year’s regular-season weekend finale and also recorded a 4-1 road victory.
    In three games last year, UNH generated a 106-33 shot advantage and went 6-for-16 on the power play as well as 10-for-10 on the penalty kill.
    The Wildcats have a 95-7 scoring advantage and eight shutouts vs. the Catamounts.

    New Hampshire, ranked No. 3 in the nation in both national polls, enters tonight’s game with a 13-2-1 overall record that includes 5-1-0 in Hockey East and 9-1-1 at home. The Wildcats are ranked fourth in the nation in both offense (4.06 goals per game) and defense (1.50 gpg) as well as third in power play (26.9%) and fifth in penalty kill (89.8%).
    The Wildcats are 4-1-1 on their current seven-game homestand and have outscored the opposition by a 25-7 margin.
    The ‘Cats have not scored more than one power-play goal in any of the last seven games; in comparison, they netted multiple power-play goals in seven of the first nine games of the season. UNH has yielded a power-play goal in six of the last seven games; in the first nine games, only two opponents tallied a power-play goal.
    Melissa Bourdon recorded her 74th career victory last Friday vs. Wayne State University; that mark is tied for second (with Jen Huggon; 2000-03) on UNH’s career leaderboard and trails only the benchmark of 76 established by Alicia Roberts (1997-2000).
    UNH had been 3-0 this season in games decided by one goal until last Saturday’s 2-1 loss to Mercyhurst.
    The junior class has combined to score 21 goals this season, and the sophomore class has equaled that number.
    Maggie Joyce, who didn’t record a multiple-point game in the first 48 games of her career, recorded four points with a goal and three assists in last weekend’s 7-1 victory against Wayne State.
    Taylor Palazeti matched her career high of two assists in that game against WSU.

    Here is a comparison of how UNH and Vermont enter the weekend in the national statistics (34 teams):
                        UNH        UVM
Off. (gpg)     4 (4.06)    34 (1.20)
Def. (gpg)    4 (1.50)    29 (4.13)
PP (%)         3 (.269)    34 (.012)
PK (%)         5 (.898)    21 (.830)
Home sweet home
    UNH’s 32-game home unbeaten streak of 28-0-4 came to an end Nov. 25 with a 2-1 loss to Mercyhurst College. The last visiting team to win at the Whitt was Dartmouth College (Jan. 5, 2005).
    Since the arena opened in the 1995-96 season, UNH has compiled a 146-30-14 home record, which is an .805 winning percentage.

    For years now, photos of UNH women’s hockey teams and headshots of current Wildcats have been displayed on the concourse of the Whittemore Center. On December 10, 2006, this display will officially become commemorated as the Russell J. McCurdy Gallery with a dedication ceremony prior to the game vs. intrastate rival Dartmouth College.
    McCurdy, an inductee of the UNH Hall of Fame, guided the Wildcats to a 264-36-10 overall record for an .868 winning percentage in 15 seasons (1978-1992). The program went undefeated in the initial four seasons (1978-81) at 72-0-1.
    UNH won the EAIAW championship all four years of its existence (1980-93) and the ‘Cats won four ECAC titles under McCurdy’s direction.

    UNH’s Whittemore Center will be the site of the 2007 Women’s Hockey East Championship. The semifinal games will take place March 3 and the championship game is March 4. This will be the first time in the league’s five-year history that the tournament will be held outside of Boston. Northeastern University’s Matthews Arena was the site of the 2003, 2004 and 2006 championships, and Boston University’s Walter Brown Arena was the venue in 2005.
    Tickets for the 2007 Women’s Hockey East Championship Tournament will go on sale this Saturday, Dec. 2nd, at 10:00 a.m. Tickets may be purchased in person at the Whittemore Center Box Office, by phone at 1-866-WILDCAT, or on-line via www.unhwildcats.com.

    UNH is the winningest women’s college hockey program in the United States. The Wildcats became the first to reach 500 victories and they are on the verge of No. 600. Now in their 30th year as a varsity sport at New Hampshire, the ‘Cats enter the weekend with an overall record of 596-155-49 for a .776 winning percentage. Here is a timeline for each century mark:
Mark          Date                Opponent            Result    Game #               Record
1st win      12/03/77         Colby                     8-4                1                        1-0-0
100            02/02/83         at Dartmouth        7-1            103                   100-1-2
200            01/15/89         St. Lawrence        5-2            227                200-20-7
300            11/27/94         vs. Providence     5-2            371              300-55-16
400            11/21/98         at Yale                   9-2            506              400-80-26
500            02/02/03         Providence           4-1            668            500-131-37
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