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BOSTON - The Boston University women's ice hockey team suffered a setback in their playoff drive Sunday, dropping a 4-2 decision to No. 8 Connecticut at Walter Brown Arena. After falling behind 2-0 early, junior co-captain Gina Kearns and freshman Lauren Cherewyk each notched goals to knot up the game. However, the Huskies rebuilt their two-goal lead behind four-point performances from senior Jaclyn Hawkins and sophomore Dominique Thibault.
After Hawkins scored twice in the first period, the Terriers (12-15-3, 8-8-1 HE) took advantage of power plays, scoring on two consecutive advantage opportunities. But the BU defense was unable to contain Connecticut's (20-5-5, 11-3-3 HE) top point holders, surrendering the game-winner and a late insurance goal to Thibault.
Hawkins put the Huskies ahead at 7:07 of the first period, edging one past junior goaltender Allyse Wilcox off assists from Thibault and freshman Jennifer Chaisson. Hawkins added to the lead less than two minutes later, scoring again off an assist from Thibault at 9:05.
The Terriers would not surrender, out-shooting Connecticut 9-8 in the period, including a power-play goal by Kearns at 17:38 off an assist from sophomore Melissa Anderson, who returned after missing a game with a foot injury.
BU again took advantage of the power play in the second period, as Cherewyk scored her fifth goal of the season. Sophomore Sarah Appleton sent a pass to junior co-captain Sarah Russell across the blueline, who then forwarded the puck to freshman Jillian Kirchner at the opposite goal post. Kirchner redirected the pass to Cherewyk in front of the goal for the tying score at 8:11 of the second period.
However, the lead was short lived. The power-play scoring streak continued, as Thibault scored the game-winner at 10:58 off assists from sophomore Samantha Reid and Hawkins after a checking call on the Terriers.
Thibault added an insurance goal at 19:08 of the third period, tallying her second goal of the affair off an assist from Hawkins.
With the loss, BU clings to a one point lead over Boston College for the fourth spot in Hockey East, with the Eagles next on the slate for a home-and-home series next weekend. The Terriers will host BC at 7:00 p.m. on Friday (Feb. 22), followed by a match-up at Conte Forum the following night at 7:00 p.m.