DURHAM, N.H. – Maggie Hunt (Naperville, Ill.) scored a power-play goal for her first goal of the season, but the University of New Hampshire women's ice hockey team was defeated 4-1 by the University of Vermont in Thursday night's Hockey East action at the Whittemore Center.
UNH, winless in six games (0-4-2), dips below .500 for the first time this season at 3-4-2. The Wildcats are 1-2-1 at home and 0-2-1 in Hockey East. UVM, which had lost all 15 previous road games in this series, improved to 2-4-4 overall, 2-1-0 Hockey East.
UNH goaltender Jenn Gilligan (Maple Ridge, British Columbia) made 15 saves. Vermont counterpart Roxanne Douville stopped 13 shots in both the second and third periods to finish with 33 saves. Meghan Huertas and Amanda Pelkey led the offense with a goal and an assist apiece.
UVM took a 1-0 lead a 5:58 of the first period when Chelsea Rapin scored on a shot from the right doorstep. Kailey Nash, with the initial shot from the right point, and Krystal Baumann set up the tally.
The Catamounts extended the lead to 2-0 at 9:50 when Megan Bergland threw the puck from behind the net to the low slot, where Kellie Dineen one-timed a shot high inside the right post. Danielle Rancourt was also credited with an assist.
UVM took that 2-0 lead and an 8-7 shot advantage into the first intermission.
New Hampshire came out strong in the second period and went on the power play at 1:47. The Wildcats capitalized on that skater advantage when Hunt's blast from the right point sailed through traffic, past Douville and under the crossbar. Kayla Mork (Victoria, Minn.) recorded her first career point with an assist.
In the sixth minute, UNH was shorthanded but Kristina Lavoie (Fonthill, Ontario) gained possession at mid-ice for a breakaway down the slot. Her wrist shot deflected off Douville's left leg pad and the right post.
Midway through the second stanza, Arielle O'Neill (St. Catharines, Ontario) led a charge down the right wing and circled behind the net before centering a pass to Lavoie, whose one-timer was stopped by Douville.
Moments later at the other end of the ice, Gilligan turned aside Bergland's shot from the right circle as well as Rapin's shot off the rebound from point-blank range.
UNH, which recorded a 14-5 shot advantage in the second period, continued to pressure early in the third. In the sixth minute, Heather Kashman (Edmonton, Alberta) snapped a wrister from the slot that deflected off Douville's glove and bounced wide of the right post. Two minutes later, a shot from the left point off the stick of Jenna Lascelle (Cornwall, Ontario) ricocheted off the right post.
UVM went ahead 3-1 at 8:22 when Huertas advanced from the right corner to the post and jammed the puck past Gilligan. Emily Walsh and Amanda Pelkey set up the tally.
The Catamounts extended the advantage to 4-1 at 14:50. Gilligan stopped Huertas' initial shot from the slot, but Pelkey scored off the rebound at the left doorstep.
UNH pulled Gilligan in favor of an extra skater soon thereafter, but could not cut into the deficit – a shot from the left point by Kailey Chappell (Pickering, Ontario) caromed off the post – and she was forced to reenter the game when a teammate was whistled for hooking at 18:01.
The Wildcats generated a 13-6 shot advantage in the final frame to finish with an overall edge of 34-18. They went 1-for-4 on the power play and 6 of 6 on the penalty kill.
New Hampshire returns to action Nov. 6 (2 p.m.) at Dartmouth College. The Wildcats' next home game is Nov. 25 (7 p.m.) against the University of Maine. That is the start of a four-game homestand that continues Nov. 26 (2 p.m.) against Princeton University.