STORRS, Conn. - The UConn women's ice hockey team held off a late rally by Merrimack to win its Hockey East home opener by a score of 5-3 on Sunday afternoon at the Freitas Ice Forum in Storrs, Conn. With the win, the Huskies remain unblemished this season and improve to 6-0-0 on the year.
The Huskies came out strong, immediately pressuring the Merrimack goaltender. UConn ended up scoring first on a fancy spin around goal by sophomore Kathryn Stockdale, which was assisted by graduate student Natalie Snodgrass. Following the goal by UConn, Merrimack turned up the pressure and answered relatively quickly knotting the game at one goal a piece. UConn was able to draw two penalties in the first period but was unable to capitalize on the power play, as both teams went into the break tied, 1-1.
Starting the second period, UConn picked up right where it left off, pressuring the Merrimack goaltender. UConn was able to break the tie on a goal from graduate student forward Summer-Rae Dobson, with the assist coming from junior defensemen Claire Peterson and then extended the lead with a goal by junior Coryn Tormala. Strong goaltending play from senior Samantha Carpentier-Yelle keyed UConn's strong second stanza. Carpentier-Yelle finished the second period with 19 saves.
UConn didn't slow after its strong second. Sophomore Jada Habisch stole the puck and with fancy puck work scored on a breakaway to extend UConn's lead to three goals. A late Merrimack goal cut the Huskies lead to two with two minutes left. Merrimack would add another goal with a minute left in the game to cut the margin to a single score, but an empty net goal by senior Danielle Fox would seal the win for the Huskies.
UConn will travel to North Andover, Mass. for a matchup at Merrimack College on October 22. Puck drop is scheduled for 2 p.m.