DURHAM, N.H. – The fourth-seeded University of New Hampshire women's ice hockey team will host the fifth-seeded Providence College Friars in the Hockey East Quarterfinals on Saturday, March 2, at the Whittemore Center at 1 p.m. Links to live stats, video and audio will be available at www.UNHWildcats.com. The first 100 students into the game will received a free 'Cat Pack t-shirt.
The Wildcats and Friars go head-to-head for the fourth time this season in the 2013 Hockey East Quarterfinal round. New Hampshire won the season series after tallying a 1-0-2 record against Providence.
UNH has a 41-24 lifetime record in postseason play dating back to a 5-3 victory against Brown University in a 1985 ECAC sem ifinal game at Snively Arena (UNH's home rink prior to construction of the Whittemore Center).
The Wildcats returned to the Hockey East Championship after a year's hiatus in 2011 to make their 10th appearance in 11 years. New Hampshire has the most tournament titles (four).
UNH has an 11-6 overall record in quarterfinal action and that includes 11-3 at home. In the team's most recent postseason game, the 'Cats were defeated by eventual conference champion Boston University. Before that, New Hampshire was defeated 2-1 at Minnesota-Duluth in a 2010 NCAA quarterfinal matchup. New Hampshire's only other quarterfinal road game was a 1-0 loss at St. Lawrence University in 2001.
The Wildcats have played 30 playoff games at home, tallying a 26-4 record. In the quarterfinals, they have registered a record of 11-3 while they are undefeated in home ice semifinals. In the finals, UNH is 7-1. The last time New Hampshire hosted Providence in a playoff game, the Wildcats topped the Friars in the 2009 conference semifinal round by a score of 3-1 en route to claiming the Hockey East title.
THE STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
New Hampshire capped off the regular season with a 2-1 victory over border rival Maine on Sunday (Feb. 24) at the Whittemore Center. Junior Nicole Gifford tallied her third goal of the year in the game while freshman Sara Carlson notched the game winner at the 7:03 mark of the third period. Sophomore netminder Jenn Gilligan posted 26 saves in the effort to earn her 10th win of the year.
Senior forward Kristina Lavoie leads the 'Cats with 11 goals and 14 assists for 25 points. She has a pair of power play goals and game winners. Freshman Alexis Crossley has lit the lamp seven times and dished out 15 assists for 22 points on the year. She leads the squad in power play goals with five. Senior Kristine Horn has found the back of the net five times and dished out 15 assists for 20 points. She has a pair of power play goals and one game winner. Sophomore Hannah Armstrong has scored 11 times and tallied seven helpers for 18 points. She has a trio of power play goals and a game winner. Junior Jessica Hitchcock has nine goals and eight assists for 17 points thus far, racking up three power play goals and two game winners. Classmate Arielle O'Neill and freshman Sara Carlson each have 14 points on seven goals and seven assists. O'Neill has three power play goals, one shorthanded tally and a pair of game winners as Carlson has three power play goals and two game winners.
Gifford comes into the contest having lit the lamp three times and dishing out 10 assists for 13 points. All three of her goals have come on power plays. Senior captain Kailey Chappell comes in with the same point total via 13 assists. Freshman Megan Armstrong has tallied four goals and distributed eight assists for 12 points on the year. Three of her four goals came on power plays. Classmate Brittney Redlick has scored six times this year for her six points. Sophomore Jenna Lascelle has dished out five assists for five points while classmate Kayla Mork splits her four points on two goals and two assists. Fellow sophomore Caroline Broderick has picked up four points on one goal and three assists while senior Katie Brock has four assists. Sophomore Jess Ryan has three points via three assists while senior Bryanna Farris and freshmen Haley Breedlove and Lauren Kirwan each have one goal.
Gilligan has started all 19 games she has played this year and comes in with a record of 10-4-3 and a pair of shutouts. She has a goals against average of 2.14 and a save percentage of .913. Freshman netminder Vilma Vaattovaara has made starts in 10 of the 12 games she has played and posts a record of 3-9-0. She has a 4.04 goals against average and a .868 save percentage.
Classmate Marie-Eve Jean has started two of the four games she has played and boasts a 1-1-1 record. She has a goals against average of 2.71 and a save percentage of .906. Sophomore Moe Bradley has started each of the two games she has played in and has a record of 0-1-0, a goals against average of 3.76 and a save percentage of .904.
SCOUTING THE FRIARS
Providence comes into the game having fallen in its last three contests. The team most recently wrapped up the regular season with a home-and-home series against Northeastern. In the first game at home, the Huskies skated past the Friars, 5-1. In game two at Northeastern, NU edged PC, 4-3.
Leading the Friars is Nicole Anderson, who comes into the game with 18 goals and 14 assists for 32 points. She has six power play goals, a team high, one shorthanded goal and a pair of game winners. Haley Frade and Molly Illikainen are next on the list with 29 points each. Frade has tallied hers on 13 goals, five of which came on power plays, and 16 assists. Illikainen has list the lamp 11 times and dished out 18 assists. She has four power play goals and a pair of game winners. Corinne Buie comes into the game with 26 points, stemming from 15 goals and 11 assists. She has one power play goal, a pair of shorthanded tallies and a game winner. Brooke Simpson has netted six of her shots and has registered 18 assists for 24 points.
Freshman goalie Sarah Bryant has spent the majority of time between the pipes for PC, registering a record of 10-11-4 with a pair of shutouts. She has a 3.15 goals against average and a .882 save percentage. Nina Riley has started eight of the 10 games she has played in and brings in a record of 3-4-1. She has a 3.88 goals against average and a .874 save percentage. Allie Morse has made four appearances with one start and has a 1-0-0 record, a 3.57 goals against average and a .812 save percentage.
UNDER MCCLOSKEY'S WATCH
Since head coach Brian McCloskey took the reigns of the women's hockey team back in 2002, the Wildcats are 19-16-5 against Providence. In Hockey East tournament games, New Hampshire holds a 3-2-0 edge.
March 16, 2003 - Conference Championship - Providence, 1-0
March 21, 2004 - Conference Championship - Providence, 3-0
March 4, 2007 - Conference Championship - New Hampshire, 3-1
March 9, 2008 - Conference Championship - New Hampshire, 1-0
March 7, 2009 - Conference Semifinal - New Hampshire, 3-1
PARTY OF FIVE
Despite being down 1-0 at the end of the first period against Providence (Feb. 15), the Wildcats surged back and scored five goals in the second period. The last time the 'Cats scored five goals in one period was at Niagara (Sept. 30, 2011).
In the 2-2 tie against Maine (Feb. 23), the Wildcats posted 51 shots-on-goal. The last time New Hampshire sent at least 50 shots on net was Jan. 24, 2009 againt Maine when the team recorded 52 shots-on-goal.
THREE'S A FEAT
Most recently, senior forward Kristina Lavoie notched her second career hat trick and the second in two games for UNH in Friday's 6-4 win at Providence.Sophomore forward Hannah Armstrong posted her first career hat trick and three-point game in UNH's 4-0 win over Connecticut on Monday, Feb. 11.
The Wildcats are the only Hockey East team to defeat the top-three teams in conference play. The team opened up the Boston College series with a 4-3 win at home. 20 days later, UNH topped Boston U. in the series opener, 4-2. On Dec. 2, the 'Cats handed Northeastern a 3-1 loss on the road.
ENDING WITH A W
After topping Maine 2-1 in the regular season finale (Feb. 24), the Wildcats ended the regular season with a win for the first time since 2009-10 when they beat Boston College, 4-1.
BACK TO BACK HAT TRICKS
Hannah Armstrong and Kristina Lavoie are the first Wildcats to post a hat trick in back-to-back games since Jan. 25 and Jan. 31, 2004. The last pair to do so was Lindsey Caleo and Carolyn Gordan.
CURRENT PLAYERS WITH HAT TRICKS
With the addition of Hannah Armstrong, three other current Wildcats have tallied hat tricks in their careers. Here is a list of those who have accomplished the feat.
Hannah Armstrong - Feb. 11, 2013 vs. Connecticut
Nicole Gifford - Nov. 26, 2011 vs. Princeton
Jenna Lascelle - Dec. 12, 2011 vs. Dartmouth
Kristina Lavoie (2) - Jan. 28, 2012 vs. Vermont, Feb. 15, 2013 at Providence
Senior forward Kristina Lavoie became the 43rd student-athlete in UNH women's hockey history to surpass the 100-career point mark with a three-point game against Vermont (Feb. 2). She now has 56 career goals and 51 assists for 107 points. She is now tied for 37th on the all-time scoring list.
A LOOK AT CONFERENCE PLAY
With the conclusion of the regular season last weekend, here is how conference play panned out for UNH.
Boston College - BC, 2-1-0
Boston University - BU, 2-1-0
Connecticut - UNH, 3-0-0
Maine - UNH, 2-0-1
Northeastern - NU, 2-1-0
Providence - UNH, 1-0-2
Vermont - UVM, 2-1
The Wildcats have had success while playing on the road this season, tallying a 9-7-1 record away from the Whittemore Center. The team opened up the season with a pair of road wins, the first being at Syracuse (Oct. 5, 4-3) while game two was at Colgate (Oct. 6, 4-1). The team started 2013 with a 3-0-0 road record before falling to fifth-ranked Boston U. Jan. 27 (3-2).
KEEPING THE LEAD
When leading at the end of the first period, the Wildcats are a perfect 7-0-0. When leading after two periods, the 'Cats have a record of 10-1-1. When scoring first, New Hampshire is 10-5-2.
100 AND COUNTING...
Five active Wildcats have eclipsed the century mark in games played through their careers.
Kristina Lavoie - 133
Kristine Horn - 132
Kailey Chappell - 132
Katie Brock - 125
Paige Goloubef - 109
...ON THE BRINK
Bryanna Farris, Nicole Gifford, and Arielle O'Neill have each played in 99 career games.