Every winning streak has to start somewhere. For Boston College women’s hockey, it began with a 4-1 win against the University of Minnesota-Duluth. The Bulldogs, coming off a 2-0 start to the season, fell to the Eagles in a well-balanced match, the first in a two-game series.
The season-opener against Minnesota-Duluth did not make the Eagles nervous—quite the opposite. “It was a lot of excitement and energy,” assistant captain Haley Skarupa said. That excitement allowed the Eagles to take the lead early. They got off to a quick start with a goal in the second minute by Dana Trivigno. Teammate Toni Ann Miano originally shot the puck, but Trivigno, with the help of freshman Makenna Newkirk— who earned her first collegiate point with the assist—finished it off with her own shot. Duluth goalie Kayla Black had no chance saving it, as the puck slipped between her and the right pipe.
Last season, Skarupa played alongside Patty Kazmaier Award winner Alex Carpenter. For the season opener, head coach Katie Crowley shook things up, putting Skarupa alongside junior Andie Anastos. So far, the two look to be a dynamic duo. Anastos and Skarupa demonstrated their good chemistry, as Anastos scored two goals and Skarupa supplied the assist for both. Skarupa managed to claim the puck from the Bulldogs and bring it down towards the goal. She had her own shot, but Anastos followed up when several Bulldogs blocked the play, creating confusion. “I slapped at the puck and I didn’t even know it was in until I skated past,” Anastos said. By the seventh minute of the game, the Eagles were up 2-0.
Goalie Katie Burt kept the Bulldogs at bay, deftly saving 22 shots. Burt played aggressively, making sure that the puck did not slip through the sides when she was bombarded in the crease. Kayla Black, the only returning member of the Bulldogs, notched 27 saves, keeping up with Burt. The Eagles’ offense, however, punished Black with tough shots. In the second period, the Eagles fired off three shots within seconds, rebounding off Black’s pads, keeping Black on her toes, but failed to finish them off.
BC’s third goal came during a power play, during which Carpenter charged the goal and shot in between the goalie’s legs, who slumped over in frustration. Head coach Katie Crowley praised the team for capitalizing on a power play, which they failed to do in three other opportunities during the game. “We haven’t had that much practice with it [power plays] yet, but I thought they moved the puck really well,” Crowley said.
Anastos scored her second goal of the game after a delayed pass by teammate Meghan Grieves. “She was doing a little dance with the puck for a while,” Anastos said. She took the pass and shot it, with the goalie unable to recover it in the 20th minute of the second period.
The Eagles failed to shine in the third period, with Katie Burt and her defensive line allowing a goal into the upper corner in the seventh minute by Bulldog Lara Stalder. Though the Bulldogs couldn’t put another one in between the pipes, the Eagles also couldn’t produce another goal, even though they had 12 shots in the period, the most in the game. “We ended up losing that period,” Anastos said.
Crowley agreed, offering some pointers on how to improve for tomorrow. “I want to tighten up our D-zone a little bit,” Crowley said. The Eagles encountered the same problem in the third period of their exhibition game against Guelph, when BC goalie Gabri Switaj allowed a goal by the Canadian college. While the team has stellar play in the first two periods, the Eagles need to work to stretch their game to a full 60 minutes.
The team, which went 34-3-2 last season, has a lot to expectations to meet. They are currently ranked as the No. 2 team in the nation by all of the major polls. But with all three of the captains—Trivigno, Carpenter, and Anastos—scoring goals in the season opener, the future looks bright for the Eagles. A winning streak has begun yet again.
Featured Image by Daniella Fasciano / Heights Editor