Previewing 2018-19 Women’s Hockey: Connecticut

bc women's hockey

No. 5 Boston College women’s hockey (8-3, 5-1 Hockey East) looks to bounce back from its first conference loss of the season as it begins a home-and-home series against Connecticut (6-5-1, 3-4-1). The Eagles’ eight-game win streak was snapped last time out against Providence, while UConn downed Maine in its most recent contest. Having not played in nearly two weeks after losing four players to the United States National Team competing at the Four Nations Cup, BC will seek to regain momentum against a feisty Huskies squad that boasts the third-best scoring offense in Hockey East. With the standings crowded at the top of the conference, this shapes up to be a crucial series for Katie Crowley’s crew.

Who is BC playing?
Connecticut

Where is BC playing?
Freitas Ice Forum, Storrs, Conn.

When is BC playing?
Friday, Nov. 16, 6 p.m.
Saturday, Nov. 17, 2 p.m.

How to Watch:
The road game will be livestreamed on UConnHuskies.com, while the Saturday matinee is available to watch on WatchESPN.

By the Numbers:

BC:

1) Star sophomore Daryl Watts has twice as many goals as any other BC player. Her two scoring plays last time out against Providence pushed her tally up to eight on the season and 50 for her career—a remarkable number considering she’s played just 49 career games.

2) The Eagles have logged at least two goals in each of their last nine contests. BC is averaging 2.91 goals per game, the fifth-best mark in the conference.

3) BC leads Hockey East in penalty minutes per game. It spends 10.4 minutes in the box per game—nearly twice as many as the conference’s least penalized team and its weekend opponent, UConn.

UConn:

1) Sophomore forward Morgan Wabick leads the Huskies with six goals on the season. Five of those came on the power play, the most by any single Hockey East player. Wabick, however, is in a recent drought, having not found the back of the net in her last four games.

2) In addition to avoiding the penalty box, the Huskies are also lethal when they get their chances with an extra skater. Their 26.5 percent power play conversion rate leads the conference.

3) Catherine Crawley is UConn’s top scorer with 13 points and has registered at least one point in nine of her 12 games this season. The Huskies possess a balanced scoring attack, with 14 different skaters notching one or more goals on the year.

Last Meeting:

The teams last met two weeks ago, when BC rolled to a 3-0 win at Kelley Rink, avenging its loss to UConn in last year’s conference tournament semifinals. Daryl Watts, Savannah Norcross and Megan Keller etched their names in the scorecard amid the dominant performance. Maddy McArthur also earned her second career shutout on the night. Before that loss, the Eagles owned a 14-game unbeaten streak in the series. Overall, BC leads the all-time series between the teams by a healthy margin, 32-15-9.

Outlook:

Winners of eight of its last nine, BC has proven to be one of the best teams in the nation despite its brief setback against the Friars. Yet the Huskies are certainly a formidable threat, especially on their home ice. Their dynamic offense can explode at any time. The Eagles will have to be particularly careful not to concede power-play chances, an area of the game that UConn specializes in—in fact, the Huskies lead the nation in power-play goals. BC can’t afford to overlook its opposition, as UConn is very capable of pulling off the upset in a similar fashion to last year. That said, if BC stays away from making self-inflicted mistakes, it could put last year’s misstep in the rear-view mirror and string together its second-straight win over the Huskies.

Featured Image by Celine Lim / Heights Editor