STORRS, Conn. (March 2, 2008) - The University of Connecticut women's ice hockey team fell to No. 2/2 University of New Hampshire 6-1 on Sunday afternoon in the Mark Edward Freitas Ice Forum.
UConn falls to 22-7-5 overall and 13-5-3 in Hockey East play, while New Hampshire improves to 30-3-1 on the year and 20-0-1 in the league. With the Husky loss, finish the regular season with a program-best 22 victories and will be the No. 2 seed in the Hockey East Tournament next weekend.
New Hampshire recorded two goals in the first period and kept the Huskies scoreless, as Sadie Wright-Ward led the Wildcats with two assists. Leah Craig, who recorded Saturday's final goal against UConn in the 5-0 UNH victory in Durham, N.H., netted the game's first goal of the day. Craig fired a shot through the Husky defense and into the back of the net to put the Wildcats up 1-0 at the 16:13 mark in the first.
Kacey Bellamy followed with the Wildcats second goal of the game at 17:49 to finish the first period with a 2-0 lead.
The Wildcats added two more goals in the second period as Jenn Wakefield scored at the 2:01 mark off a Micaela Long assist. Long added her second assist of the game on a power-play goal by sophomore Steph Long. Her power-play goal came at 3:41 in the second period.
The Huskies were able to get on the board in the second period as sophomore Dominique Thibault (L'Orignal, Ont.) recorded her team-leading 24th goal of the game. Thibault took relay passes from senior co-captain Bridget King (Paxton, Mass.) and Jennifer Chaisson (Cumberland, Ont.) and found an opening past UNH goaltender, Kayley Herman.
With the score 4-1 going into the third period, the Huskies had a lot of work to do to get back into the game. But the New Hampshire offense continued to dominate as they out shot the Huskies 17-10 in the third set of 20 minutes. Jennifer Hitchcock recorded the Wildcat's second power-play goal of the game followed by Long's first goal of the game. Long finished the day with one goal and two assists while both Holmes and Bellamy added the same.
Goaltender Brittany Wilson (Nepean, Ont.) started in goal for the Huskies but was taken out after 23:41 minutes played. Sophomore Jennie Bellonio (Guilford, Conn.) replaced Wilson in goal and picked up 36:19 minutes played and 22 saves. Wilson made 12 stops before exiting the game. New Hampshire's Herman made 21 saves for the Wildcats, including 10 in the third period.
Prior to the game, the Huskies paid tribute to their four seniors; co-captain Jaclyn Hawkins (Manotick, Ont.), co-captain Bridget King (Paxton, Mass.), Liz Gallinaro (Amherst, Mass.) and Britney Chandler (Pickering, Ont.).
UConn will begin post season play next Saturday as they host the Hockey East Tournament in the Mark Edward Freitas Ice Forum. Check www.UConnHuskies.com for more information on the tournament throughout the week.