DURHAM, N.H. – The University of New Hampshire women's hockey team will conclude the season series against Northeastern Thursday as they play in the Annual Hockey East Skating Strides Against Breast Cancer game. Links to live stats and video will be available at www.UNHWildcats.com.
THE STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
The Wildcats opened up 2013 with a fantastic start, recording a 3-0-0 record in their first three games. In its most recent series, New Hampshire picked up a weekend sweep of Hockey East foe Connecticut.
Leading the 'Cats is senior forward Kristina Lavoie, who comes in with six goals and a team high 10 assists for 16 points. She has one power play goal and a game winner. Freshman Alexis Crossley has tallied six goals and nine assists from the blueline for 15 points. Four of her goals have come on power plays while one was a game winner. Jessica Hitchcock leads the squad in goals (7) and has dished out six assists for 13 points. She has a pair of power play goals and game winners. Kristine Horn has lit the lamp four times and dished out nine assists for 13 points. She has a power play goal and a game-winning goal. Sara Carlson splits her 12 points with six goals and six assists, including a trio of power play goals and a game winner. Nicole Gifford has 10 points on a pair of goals and eight assists. Each of her two goals have been on power plays. Arielle O'Neill and Hannah Armstrong come into the game with matching tallies of five goals and four assists for nine points while Megan Armstrong has four goals and five assists for the same total. O'Neill has two power play goals, one shorthanded and one game winner while Hannah Armstrong has one power play tally. Megan Armstrong has three power play goals and one game winner.
Senior captain Kailey Chappell has dished out seven assists for her seven points while Brittney Redlick has lit the lamp four times for four points. One of her goals was a game winner. Katie Brock, Jenna Lascelle and Jess Ryan each have three points on a trio of helpers as Caroline Broderick is right behind them with two assists. Rookie classmates Haley Breedlove and Lauren Kirwan have one goal while Kayla Mork has assisted on one goal.
Vilma Vaattovaara has seen the majority of time in net for New Hampshire, starting in nine of the 11 game she has played. She comes in with a record of 3-8-0, a goals against average of 3.84 and a save percentage of .874. Jenn Gilligan has posted career numbers in her 10 games played, coming in with a record of 7-1-1 with a shutout. She has a goals against average of 1.86 and a save percentage of .924. Marie-Eve Jean has started two of the three games she has played in and posts a 0-1-1 record. She has a 3.34 goals against average and a .897 save percentage. Moe Bradley has made starts in both games she has seen the ice and has a 0-1-0 record. She also has a 3.76 goals against average and a .904 save percentage.
SCOUTING THE HUSKIES
Northeastern comes into the game after topping Providence, 8-7, in a scoring duel. Kendall Coyne leads the squad in all three scoring categories with 20 goals and 19 assists for 39 points. She has eight power play goals, one shorthanded tally and four game winners. Casey Pickett has scored 14 goals and assisted on 12 for 26 points. She has a pair of power play goals, one shorthanded tally and a game winner. Rachel Llanes has lit the lamp nine times and dished out 15 assists fir 24 points on the year. Kelly Wallace splits her 16 points with eight goals and eight assists and has one game-winning goal.
Netminder Chloe Desjadrins has started all but one game this year and comes in with a record of 12-8-2 with three shutouts. She has a 2.89 goals against average and a .900 save percentage. Kelsey O'Sullivan has started one of the four games she has played in and boasts a record of 0-1-0. She has a goals against average of 3.67 and a save percentage of .875.
SKATING STRIDES AGAINST BREAST CANCER
The women's hockey team, in coordination with Hockey East, will play their annual Skating Strides Against Breast Cancer game on Jan. 24 at home against Northeastern at 7 p.m. The Skating Strides Program enters its seventh season and has helped raise over $200,000 for various breast cancer charities. Leading up to the game, members of the team will engage in fundraising activities to raise money for the program, including jersey raffles.
Three different freshmen have been honored by Hockey East this season for multiple awards. Netminder Vilma Vaattovaara was tabbed as the WHEA Defensive Player of the Week on Oct. 8 while Alexis Crossley (Oct. 22) and Megan Armstrong (Nov. 12) have each been named the Pro Ambitions Rookie of the Week. Crossley was most recently honored as the Hockey East Rookie of the Month for the month of December.
WHERE THEY RANK NATIONALLY
Individually and as a team, the Wildcats have posted some impressive numbers, securing spots in the top-rankings nationally. Alexis Crossley ranks 19th in defenseman points per game (0.65) and 22nd in rookie scoring. Jenn Gilligan is sixth in the nation in winning percentage (.833), 13th in the nation in goals against average (1.86) and 13th in save percentage (.924).
The team as a whole has found great success on the power play, ranking eighth in power play percentage (23.8). On the penalty killing side, they rank 12th with a kill percentage of 85.1. In combined special teams, the 'Cats are ranked eighth nationally at 55.7 percent.
This year's newcomers have accounted for 61 (31g, 30a) of the 137 points the Wildcats have tallied this year. Alexis Crossley has six goals and nine assists for 15 points while Jessica Hitchcock has 13 points on seven goals and six assists. Sara Carlson has six goals and six assists for 12 points as Megan Armstrong has four goals and five assists for nine points. Jonna Curtis has a pair of goals and four assists for six points. Brittney Redlick has lit the lamp four times for her four points while Haley Breedlove and Lauren Kirwan each have one goal.
POWERFUL ON THE POWER PLAY
The Wildcats have tallied 19 power play goals through their 21 games played, giving them the eighth best power play unit in the country. The team started the season with a power play tally in each of the first five games and have seven power play tallies in their last six games. Alexis Crossley leads the stat with four power play goals while Megan Armstrong and Sara Carlson have each netted three. Nicole Gifford, Jessica Hitchcock and Arielle O'Neill each have two. Kristine Horn, Kristina Lavoie and Hannah Armstrong have each tallied one goal with the advantage.
On The Airwaves
A total of five UNH women's ice hockey regular-season games will broadcast live on The Wildcat Sports Radio Network, which consists of WGIR-AM 610 (Manchester), WQSO-FM 96.7 (Portsmouth), WGIN-AM 930 (Rochester), WNTK-FM 99.7 (New London) and WASR-AM 1420 (Wolfeboro), WSMN-AM 1590 (Nashua).
It begins with the home opener Oct. 16 vs. Vermont and concludes on Feb. 17 vs. Providence.
Here is the schedule of games (listed time is start of broadcast):
Oct. 16 vs. Vermont (6:55 p.m.)
Nov. 9 vs. Boston U. (6:55 p.m.)
Nov. 20 vs. Quinnipiac (6:55 p.m.)
Feb. 10 vs. UConn (11:55 a.m.)
Feb. 17 vs. Providence (1:55 p.m.)
'Cats on TV
New Hampshire will have two of its home games aired on the Live Well TV network. The games include Dec. 8 vs. Harvard (2 p.m.) and Feb. 10 vs. UConn (12 p.m.).