HOCKEY EAST HEADLINES
Hockey East regular-season champion and No. 1 Northeastern (30-4- 2/24-3-0 HEAW) will take on No. 7 Maine (15-13-8/9-11-7 HEAW) in the first semifinal on Saturday at 12 p.m. Northeastern looks to return to the Hockey East championship game for the fourth time in as many years and claim its third consecutive Bertagna Trophy. The Huskies have been in five championship contests in program history (2011, 2013, 2017, 2018, 2019.) The Black Bears advance to the semifinals for the first time since 2018, when they fell to the Huskies at Matthews Arena, 2-1, in the only postseason meeting between the two programs. Northeastern went on to win its first Hockey East Tournament crown that year. During the regular season, Maine handed Northeastern one of just three losses for the Huskies in 2019-20, a 3-2 overtime victory on Nov. 24 in Boston. This marks just the second time the seven-seed has advanced to the semifinals after UConn did so in 2018. UConn downed top-seed Boston College that year to move on to the title game.
No. 5 UConn (18-17-2/13-12-2 HEAW) has moved onto the semifinals for
the fourth time in program history, most recently in 2018 when they team
advanced to the title game. The Huskies have never won the Hockey East
Tournament. No. 6 New Hampshire (18-14-4/12-12-3 HEAW) returns to
the semifinals for the first time since 2010. The Wildcats won four straight
tournament titles from 2006-09, but have not returned to the championship
game since. UConn is 3-1 against New Hampshire all-time in the Hockey
East Tournament, including a 1-1 record in the semifinals. It is the first
postseason meeting between the two programs since a 2016 quarterfinal
HOCKEY EAST WOMEN'S PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Skylar Fontaine - Northeastern
Skylar Fontaine (East Greenwich, R.I.) led all Hockey East players with four points off one goal and three assists as the Huskies went 2-0-0 in the quarterfinals. Additionally, the junior led all defenseman in the country with four points. Fontaine was involved in all three of the Huskies' goals in the decisive 3-1 victory over Vermont to help Northeastern advance to the semifinals. Fontaine currently leads all active players with 12 career tournament points on three goals and nine assists.
Viki Harkness - UConn
Viki Harkness (Berwick, Ont.)
played a crucial role in the Huskies'
three-game triumph over
Boston College. The sophomore
tallied three points on two goals
and one assist over the weekend.
She picked up a point in
each game for UConn, as the
forward provided an assist on
Jessie Aney's goal in Game
1 and provided the insurance
goal in UConn's 2-0 shutout
over the Eagles in Game 2,
before netting the tying goal in
UConn's thrilling 2-1 win over
the Eagles in Game 3.
PRO AMBITIONS ROOKIE OF THE WEEK
Ida Kuoppala - Maine
Ida Kuoppala (Pedersore,
Finland) scored a goal in
each of the first two playoff
games of her career. Her first
postseason tally served as
the game-winning strike in a
3-2 double overtime victory
over #2 Boston University on
Friday, where she scored in
the 96th minute of the game.
Her second came on Maine's
first power-play chance of
HOCKEY EAST WOMEN'S DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Ava Boutilier - New Hampshire
Ava Boutilier (Charlottetown,
P.E.I.) backstopped the Wildcats
to their first semifinal appearance
in a decade as she stopped 58
of Providence's 60 shot attempts
on target, including a 35-save
shutout in Game 2 of a series at
Providence. Boutilier's shutout
was the first by a Wildcat goaltender
in the post season since
2008, and she's the first UNH
netminder in over two decades to
tally multiple points this season,
as she's now up to two assists on
the year after she assisted on the
game-winning goal in Game 1.
On the weekend, Boutilier posted
a .967 save percentage, and a
HOCKEY EAST TOP PERFORMERS
Delaney Belinskas, BC (Sr., F; Port Orange, Fla.) Recorded three points on one goal and two assists in BC's series against UConn with nine shots on goal.
Hannah Bilka, BC (Fr., F; Coppell, Texas) Had one goal and one assist for two points in BC's quarterfinal series with UConn.
Maddy McArthur, BC (So., G; St. Catherines, Ont.) Made 105 saves on the weekend in a three-game series against UConn for a .946 save percentage, the 10th-most saves in a single tournament in league history.
Natalie Snodgrass, UConn (Jr., F; Eagan, Minn.) Accumulated two points on two goals this weekend. The junior netted a goal in the Huskies late rally in the third period of game two, then notched the game-winner in UConn's thrilling come from-behind 2-1 victory over Boston College in Game 3 of the quarterfinals. Her goal was also her 100th career point, becoming just the fifth player in program history to accomplish the feat.
Morgan Fisher, UConn (Sr., G; Vernon, Conn.) Racked up 60 saves in three games between the pipes, including 21 in UConn's 2-0 shutout victory over Boston College in Game 2 of the Hockey East quarterfinals
Tereza Vanisova, ME (Sr., F; Strakonice, Czech Republic) Scored the eventual game-winning goal in Game 2 of the a quarterfinal playoff sweep against #2 Boston University on Saturday.
Carly Jackson, ME (Sr., G; Amherst, N.S.) Picked up a career high 57 saves in a 3-2 double overtime road victory on Friday against Boston University. Jackson finished with the weekend with 84 total saves on only three goals allowed in 155:18 of ice time to backbone the Black Bears to the weekend sweep of the Terriers.
Tori Howran, UNH (Sr., D; Bancroft, Ont.) Notched her second game-winning goal of the season in the final ten minutes of Game 2 at Providence, icing a UNH sweep over the Friars to lift the Wildcats into the semifinals for the first time in 10 years. She also tallied an assist on the game-winning goal in Game 1, as she skated from behind her own net to behind the Providence net on a power play and tipped a pass into the slot. Howran also blocked five shots in the series.
Blanka Škodová, UVM (So., G; Sternberk, Czech Republic) Set a new career-high with 41 saves in Game 2 of Vermont's quarterfinal series at Northeastern.
Ève-Audrey Picard, UVM (Sr., Longueuil, Qué.) Scored a goal in Game 2 that was 98th point of her career. The senior finishes her collegiate career second on the all-time points list at UVM. She also has the second-most assists (55) in program history and the fifth-most goals (43).