WAKEFIELD, Mass. – Vilma Vaattovaara (Veikkola, Finland), a sophomore goaltender on the University of New Hampshire women's ice hockey team, was named Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week on Monday. The league also announced the UNH Wildcats as the Team of the Week.
Vaattovaara backboned UNH to a 3-1 victory at second-ranked Boston College on Oct. 16 with a 36-save effort. She stopped the last 21 shots she faced to hold the Eagles scoreless in both the second and third periods with seven and 14 saves, respectively. Vaattovaara blanked BC on six power plays, including three in the final period. The Eagles went on their last power play with 2:29 remaining and pulled their goalie for a two-skater advantage with 1:24 on the clock.
In four games this season, Vaattovaara has a 3-0-1 record with a 1.47 GAA and .952 save percentage. She leads Hockey East in both GAA and save percentage and is No. 7 in the nation in both statistics. In two Hockey East games, Vaattovaara is 1-0-1 with a 1.44 GAA and .946 save percentage.
It marked the second league award of the 2013-14 season for Vaattovaara, who was named Hockey East co-Player of the Week on Sept. 30.
For the Wildcats, the last time they defeated a team ranked that high was Dec. 14, 2007, when the top-ranked 'Cats defeated second-ranked Harvard University, 4-1, at the Whittemore Center. Since that date, UNH had lost seven consecutive games against teams ranked No. 1 or No. 2 in the national poll.
New Hampshire (3-2-1 overall, 1-0-1 Hockey East) returns to action with a two-game series at Penn State University on Oct. 26 (7 p.m.) & 27 (2 p.m.). The Wildcats' next home game is Nov. 1 (7 p.m.) against Boston University.