BOSTON -- Freshmen Micaela Long (South Boston, Mass.) and Kelly Paton (Woodstock, Ontario) and junior captain Jennifer Hitchcock (LaSalle, Ontario) each recorded a goal and an assist to lead the fifth-ranked University of New Hampshire women’s ice hockey team to Wednesday night’s 4-1 Hockey East victory against Boston University at Walter Brown Arena.
UNH climbed within one point of first place in the Hockey East standings by improving to 11-1-1 (23 points) in the league, and the Wildcats improved to 19-3-4 overall. BU, defeated 4-0 by the ‘Cats at UNH earlier this season, is now 15-9-2, 7-7-1.
Trailing 1-0 at first intermission despite a 13-7 shot advantage, UNH rallied to take a 3-1 lead in the second stanza. Hitchcock scored her team-leading 19th goal of the season with the assistance of Martine Garland (Toronto, Ontario), the team’s other junior captain who recorded an assist for the third consecutive game, at 2:44 to tie the score 1-1.
The rookie duo of Long and Paton combined to produce the next two goals to give the ‘Cats a lead they would not relinquish. Long, with five points in the last three games, potted her sixth goal of the year – a 4-on-4 tally – at 8:58 to give UNH a 2-1 advantage. Two minutes, 51 seconds later, Paton netted her 11th goal of the season to give the Wildcats a 3-1 lead at 11:49.
Leah Craig (Seaforth, Ontario) put New Hampshire ahead 4-1 at 5:19 of the third period with her 10th goal of the year. Hitchcock was credited with an assist on the tally.
UNH goaltender Melissa Bourdon (Ile Bizard, Quebec) finished with 15 saves, including six in both the first and second periods. BU counterpart Alysse Wilcox recorded double digits in saves all three periods (13-14-10) for a total of 37.
The Terriers took a 1-0 lead at 17:32 of the first period on Erin Seman’s goal. That tally ended a stretch of 179:24 (dating back to last season) in which UNH held Boston University scoreless.
New Hampshire returns to action Feb. 3 at home against league-leading and ninth-ranked Boston College. Game time at the Whittemore Center is 2 p.m.