BOSTON - No. 3/3 Boston University (4-0-0, 2-0-0) used a three-goal third period to hand the No. 8/9 Northeastern women's ice hockey team (4-1-0, 0-1-0) its first loss of the season on Tuesday night at Matthews Arena, 4-1.
The Terriers took a 1-0 lead in the final minute of the second period before opening the third with a goal just 47 seconds into the stanza. Casey Pickett scored the lone goal for the Huskies, while Chloe Desjardins made 27 saves in goal.
"I thought it was a pretty even game for two periods," said head coach Dave Flint. I thought we played hard and battled. We played great in the defensive zone, and then in the third period we got a bit careless, and they took advantage of those opportunities."
BU outshot Northeastern 31-25 for the game despite the Huskies peppering Terrier netminder Kerrin Sperry (24 saves) with 12 third period shots. Both teams were able to net a power play goal in the game as NU went 1-of-4 and Boston University 1-of-5.
The teams played an even first 20 minutes in a period that saw a combined five penalties. Neither team could capitalize on the man advantage, however, as the Huskies mustered just one shot on their three power play opportunities.
NU's best chance of the frame came midway through the stanza when the Huskies created a three-on-one chance from a turnover in the neutral zone. Brittany Esposito fed Rachel Llanes with a pass heading into the BU zone, but Llanes' low shot was steered aside by Sperry and the puck cleared before the Huskies could pounce on the rebound.
At the other end of the ice, Desjardins handled all five BU shots thrown at her, the most difficult coming off a tip from the blue line late in the frame.
Both teams continued to trade chances throughout the second period, with the Terriers holding a 13-8 edge in shots on goal. Northeastern was whistled for three penalties during the middle frame, and Boston University buried a power play tally with 36 seconds left in the frame. With NU in the box for a roughing infraction, Kayla Tutino redirected a shot from Marie-Philip Poulin at the point past a screened Desjardins for the score.
Earlier in the period, Esposito almost gave the Huskies a one-goal edge when she took a long outlet pass from Lucie Povova, toe-dragged around a Terrier defenseman and fired a shot on goal that Sperry blocked to the corner.
The Terriers built on its lead in the opening minute of the third when Sarah Lefort buried her sixth goal of the year. Lefort took a long pass from Jill Cardella, and roofed a shot over the right shoulder of Desjardins to make it 2-0 Huskies 47 seconds into the third.
Cardella was then on the receiving end of a Terrier goal midway through the final frame as Poulin skated out of the corner and sent a saucer pass onto the stick of Cardella, who beat Desjardins for her first goal of the season.
Northeastern would cut into the deficit with 7:51 left in regulation as Pickett notched her third goal of the season with the Huskies on the power play. After Kendall Coyne sent a pass out to Ann Doherty at the point, Doherty fired a shot through traffic that was tipped by Pickett past Sperry for the score.
The Terriers wouldn't allow Northeastern to build any momentum, however, as Taylor Holze snuck a shot past Desjardins in the final three minutes of regulation off a cross-ice pass from Louise Warren in the left corner to regain the three-goal BU lead.
Northeastern will return to action on Oct. 26 as the Huskies host Robert Morris at 7 p.m. at Matthews Arena. NU will then resume league play the following afternoon against Maine at 3 p.m.
Game Notes: Northeastern is now 31-20-5 all-time against the Terriers ... The Huskies are now 3-4-4 in Hockey East openers ... BU's second period goal ended a streak of 26 straight penalty kills by the Huskies ... Doherty now has three assists in her last three games.