NORTH ANDOVER, Mass. – The Providence College women’s hockey team clinched a spot in the Hockey East playoffs with a 4-1 win over Merrimack. Christina Putigna (Grimsby, Ontario) tied a career high, with three points on one goal and two assists. The Friars improved to 10-20-1 (6-14-1 WHEA) and the Warriors moved to 4-26-1 (2-18-1 WHEA).
Merrimack’s Marie Delarbre started off the scoring with a power play goal at 4:15 in the first period.
Providence responded two minutes later. Lauren Klein (Shoreview, Minn.) scored her first goal of the season with a shot from the point. Christina Putigna worked the puck behind the net and passed to Brooke Boquist (Thunder Bay, Ontario), who moved the puck up to the point for her 10th assist of the season.
The Friars took the lead at 8:06 in the second period when Madison Sansone (Lockport, N.Y.) picked up the puck in the high slot and quickly shot past Merrimack’s Samantha Ridgewell.
Providence extended their lead to two goals with a power play goal from Christina Putigna (Grimsby, Ontario). Only 14 seconds into the power play, Providence maintained pressure in the offensive zone. Cassidy MacPherson worked the puck down to Carels, who moved the puck back up to Putigna in the slot that made it through Ridgewell. Providence went one-for-one on the power play.
With the goal, Putigna is now tied for second with Boston College’s Alex Carpenter for power play goals in the NCAA.
The Friars tallied an insurance goal with 2:15 left in regulation with the combined effort of Boquist and Putigna. Boquist forced a turnover entering the Merrimack zone and Putigna picked up the loose puck and then passed the puck back to Boquist for a tap in empty netter.
Madison Myers (Colchester, Vt.) started for the Friars and made 28 saves for her ninth win of the season.
With the win, Providence clinched a spot in the Hockey East playoffs.
Providence will finish the series with Merrimack on Feb. 14 at Schneider Arena at 2:00 p.m.
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