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Women Terriers Head into Weekend Amidst Record Winning Streak

Team skates against BC, Maine this weekend

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Jenelle Kohanchuk (SAR’12) ranks third on the women’s ice hockey team, with 22 points. Photo by Steve McLaughlin

The women’s ice hockey Terriers, currently ranked third nationwide, play two crucial games this weekend. First up, they take on archrival Boston College tomorrow, January 15, at 2 p.m. at Conte Forum. The next day they host the University of Maine Black Bears at 3 p.m. Riding a program-best winning streak, the BU team is looking to earn critical points this weekend in the Hockey East standings.

Since falling to the Eagles on November 20, the Terriers have reeled off an impressive eight straight wins. During its current stretch, BU (16-2-3, 6-1-3 Hockey East) has dominated the opposition, outscoring opponents by a 31-9 margin and securing four shutouts, three of them in the last five games.

For the season, eight Terriers have recorded at least 10 points, with Marie-Philip Poulin (SED’14), a gold medal winner for Canada in last year’s Winter Olympics, topping the list with 33 (16 goals, 17 assists). The Quebec native also leads conference rookies in goals, assists, and points and ranks first among all freshmen in the NCAA in points per game (1.94).

On defense, the Terriers boast two of Hockey East’s top-three point scorers. Tara Watchorn (SAR’12) leads the league’s defensemen in points (18) despite playing in only 14 games. Catherine Ward (GRS’11), another Olympic gold medal winner for Canada last year, ranks third in the conference, with 13 points.

Goaltending has been stellar for BU all season thanks to the tandem efforts of Kerrin Sperry (CAS’14) and Alissa Fromkin (CAS’13).

Jenelle Kohanchuk (SAR’12), who ranks third on the team, with 22 points, says the team’s confidence has continued to grow during the recent streak.

“Everyone’s extremely motivated, and now that it’s the second half of the season, we all have our eyes set on the NCAA tournament,” Kohanchuk says. “We’ve been playing well as a team, starting with our goaltending and moving right up to the defensemen and forwards. We’re all executing well, and it’s building confidence each day.”

“Boston College is a top team this year, with outstanding players,” says head coach Brian Durocher (SED’78). “This will be a great rubber match for the season series and one that will have some national ranking implications. It’s a big game and we’re looking forward to it.”

On the heels of the Terriers-Eagles battle, BU’s attention will turn toward the Black Bears, who enter the weekend with a 9-9-4 record, 3-5-2 mark in league play. Although Maine is farther down the standings, Durocher expects a tough matchup.

“Anytime you play your biggest rival, the next day is always a challenge,” Durocher says. “Maine is a team that plays with a lot of passion and conviction. They’ve won some big games this year and will be ready on Sunday. The good news is we’ll be back in our own building. The challenge for us is to make sure we’re ready to go.”

In the ultracompetitive Hockey East, no game can be taken lightly, Kohanchuk says. “Both games will be extremely hard and gritty,” she predicts. “Every team comes ready to play each game, and we’re going to have to work extremely hard. We’re a confident group, but we’ll have to come out hard and prepared in both games to come away with four points.”

The Terriers face off against the Eagles Saturday, January 15, at 2 p.m. at BC’s Conte Forum, then host Maine Sunday, January 16, at 3 p.m. at Walter Brown Arena, 285 Babcock St. Purchase womens ice hockey tickets here, call 617-353-GOBU (4628), or visit the Agganis Arena ticket office, 925 Commonwealth Ave., Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Matt Caracappa can be reached at caracapp@bu.edu.

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