CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. -- Jenn Wakefield (Pickering, Ontario), the reigning Mission Rookie of the Week in Hockey East, recorded two goals and an assist to propel the third-ranked University of New Hampshire women’s ice hockey team to Thursday night’s 4-1 Hockey East victory against seventh-ranked Boston College at Conte Forum.
New Hampshire, now 37-2-2 lifetime against BC, improved to 4-1-0 overall and 2-0-0 in the league. It marked the first loss of the season for the Eagles, now 3-1-1, 0-1-0.
This was the second consecutive two-goal, one-assist game for Wakefield, who tallied those numbers Oct. 21 against Boston University. Linemates Sam Faber (Mt. Sinai, N.Y.; goal, assist) and Kelly Paton (Woodstock, Ontario; two assists) also had multiple-point games for the ‘Cats. Rookie goaltender Kayley Herman (Weburn, Saskatchewan) improved to 4-0-0 with an 18-save performance.
UNH entered the game 0-for-23 on the power play this season but needed just 18 seconds on its first power-play opportunity of the night to change that and take a 1-0 lead. Paton moved the puck from the right point to Faber in the near circle. Faber’s centering pass was collected in the slot by Wakefield, who fired a shot into the upper-right corner of the net at 3:47.
The Eagles tied the game, 1-1, at 13:25 when Maggie Taverna’s floater from the right circle glanced off Herman’s glove into the upper-right corner.
Faber and Leah Craig (Seaforth, Ontario) netted goals 66 seconds apart to give UNH a two-goal advantage before the first intermission. Faber, with the assistance of Wakefield, scored what proved to be the game-winning goal at 17:03 when she carried the puck in from the left circle to the front of the net and tucked the puck into the net. Craig initiated and finished the next scoring sequence. She passed the puck from the right wing to Sadie Wright-Ward (Durham, N.H.) behind the net. Wright-Ward maneuvered to the left circle and her centering pass to the slot caromed off Craig’s skate into the net at 18:09.
New Hampshire opened the second period with strong puck possession and Wakefield was denied four minutes into the stanza when her shot from the slot beat BC netminder Molly Schaus (24 saves) but careened off the left post.
BC gained some momentum near period’s end but Herman turned aside Meghan Fardelmann at the left post and covered the loose puck with Megan Keever lurking at the top of the crease. Herman then stymied Becky Zavisza as she charged down the slot and also got a second shot off the rebound.
The Eagles began the third period on the power play for 1:50, but the UNH penalty kill unit limited the home team to a pair of perimeter shots. BC went on its third power play of the game at 12:30 but could not manage a shot on goal.
The duo of Wakefield and Paton combined to give the Wildcats a 4-1 lead at 16:37. Wakefield entered the offensive zone down the slot and slid the puck wide right to Paton, who executed a return pass that Wakefield redirected into the open cage.
New Hampshire returns to action Oct. 28 (4 p.m.) at home against the University of Maine. Tickets for the game are available online at www.unhwildcats.com or by calling 866-WILDCAT. The game will also be videostreamed online at UNHwildcats.tv.