Crysti Houser scored her third point of the game with an empty-net tally with seven seconds remaining as the Yale Bulldogs (5-5-0, 3-4-0 ECAC Hockey League) held on to defeat the Northeastern women’s hockey team (2-11-1, 1-6-1 Hockey East) by a score of 3-1 on Saturday afternoon at Matthews Arena.
The final period saw a flurry of action in the final five minutes. With 4:27 remaining in the third period, Yale’s Jenna Spring scored her third of the season to give her team a two-goal advantage. Howser picked up a turnover behind the Northeastern net and fed Spring in front, who beat NU junior netminder Sarah Belliveau for the goal. The two-goal lead would not last long, however, as Husky freshman Chelsey Jones scored her eighth of the season 18 seconds later to get the home team back within a goal. After senior Amy Goodney picked up the puck deep in the Yale zone, she fed a pass across the crease to Jones, who slid it under the pads of Bulldog goaltender Ansley LaHue.
Northeastern pulled Belliveau for the final 40 seconds of the third period after the Huskies had a tough time getting the puck out of their zone. Despite the home team’s efforts, Howser put the game away with an empty-net tally from just outside the NU blue line with seven seconds left.
The first period was evenly played, as the Bulldogs narrowly outshot the Huskies by a 7-5 margin. Despite neither team gaining a decisive advantage, the Bulldogs struck first with 1:41 remaining in the period on the power play. Just five seconds after NU freshman Annie Hogan went into the box for body-checking, Yale’s Sheila Zingler scored her fourth goal of the season off the subsequent faceoff. Crysti Howser won the faceoff to Zingler, who was sitting in the slot and beat Belliveau for the game’s opening goal.
Neither team scored in the second period, but the Huskies had plenty of chances, with their best two coming in the final five minutes. At the 4:45 mark, sophomore defenseman Erin Reil looped a pass over all Yale defenders to freshman Chelsey Jones, who was waiting at the blue line. Going in all alone with a teammate behind her, Jones deked to the right but her shot only grazed the side of the net. Just over three minutes later and while shorthanded, senior Amy Goodney blocked a shot at the point and went in on a breakaway against LaHue, but the Yale goaltender made the save to keep the Bulldogs ahead after two periods.
Belliveau made 24 saves for Northeastern, while LaHue played very well for the visitors, making 17 key saves in earning her first collegiate victory. The Huskies managed only four of their 18 shots on the power play, despite having eight chances with the man advantage. Yale scored one goal on five power-play opportunities.
The Huskies return to the road next weekend, as the team travels to Orono, Maine, for two games with Hockey East foe the University of Maine on Saturday and Sunday at noon. Last time the two teams met, Northeastern spotted the Black Bears a four-goal lead early in the second period before scoring the next five goals in the final two periods for a thrilling 6-5 comeback victory.