Jan. 24, 2009
PROVIDENCE, R.I. - The Providence College women's hockey team shutout Boston University, 2-0, to earn their sixth conference victory in the past seven games. Third period goals by seniors Katy Beach (Cleveland, Ohio.) and Mari Pehkonen (Tampere, Finland) coupled with a 34 save shutout by freshman Genevieve Lacasse (Scarborough, Ontario) led Providence to a record of 13-9-2 (8-2-1). Boston University falls to 11-8-5 (8-5-0).
In a defensive battle that saw 12 successful penalty-kills, the Friars' senior leadership came through as PC avenged a heartbreaking shootout loss at BU on November 1. In the last meeting, the Terriers scored the game-tying goal with only 11 seconds remaining before earning a 3-2 shootout victory. With the win, Providence, with a game in hand, now stands at fourth in the conference.
Boston University put the pressure on the Friars throughout the first period, generating two power-plays in the first ten minutes. The PC penalty-kill held strong as they allowed only four shots while a man down. Providence would have its chances on the power-play as they earned a two-man advantage for 23 seconds at the 16:22. 13 seconds in, Alyse Ruff's (Tualatin, Ore.) rebound attempt in front was denied by a sprawling save from BU's Allyse Wilcox. Neither team was able to find the back of the net in the first as BU held the advantage in shots, 12-11.
The Providence defense continued its stellar play throughout the second as the Friars denied three more power-play attempts from the Terriers. Pehkonen almost put the Friars on top at 10:15 of the second while PC was a man down. The senior stripped a BU defender of the puck at the PC blue line but her breakaway attempt was denied with a stick save by Wilcox. BU outshot PC, 9-6, in the period as they went into the locker room with the overall edge in shots, 21-17.
The two teams matched the intensity of the other at the start of the third period but Providence opened the scoring at 2:49. Junior Colleen Martin (Woburn, Mass.) sent a pass down the left boards to classmate Pamela McDevitt (South Boston, Mass.). McDevitt advanced into the BU zone and sent a shot towards the BU cage. Wilcox made the initial save, but the rebound found empty space in the slot. Beach, as PC fans have grown accustomed to, outhustled the BU defenders and put home the rebound with an outstretched backhand for her seventh goal of the season. McDevitt and Martin earned their second and fifth assists on the play, respectively.
Providence would double their lead with the final goal of the game at 6:04. Pehkonen gained possession of the puck in the right faceoff circle and circled around two BU defenders before stick-handling towards the right post. The Finland native maneuvered the puck from her forehand to backhand, waiting for Wilcox to commit, before lifting the puck underneath the crossbar for her sixth goal this season. Freshman Kate Bacon (Chanhassen, Minn.) registered her fourth helper on the play.
The Friar penalty-kill would be called into action one more time with the same result as the previous six occasions. Lacasse, the backbone of the PC defense, came up with several clutch saves throughout the third as BU pushed for its first goal of the game.
Lacasse earned her fifth shutout of the season, the most by a PC freshman since Jana Bugden recorded seven in 2002-03, to improve her record to 11-7-0 (7-2-0 HE).
The two teams will finish the season series at Walter Brown Arena on the campus of Boston Unviersity at 3:00 p.m. on Sunday, January 25.
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