Wildcats blow out Huskies with Armstrong hat-trick
The University New Hampshire women's ice hockey team ended it's six-game home losing streak Monday night at the Whittemore Center against the University of Connnecticut Huskies by a final score of 4-0.
With the win, New Hampshire improves to 12-14-2 overall and 8-7-1 in Hockey East action. As for the Huskies, they fall to 3-23-3 overall and to 1-14-1 in Hockey East.
When asked of UNH head coach Brian McCloskey on his thoughts on the comfortable win, it simply was execution.
"We changed up our lines and it worked out well," McCloskey said. "I was pleased in general with our puck movement and how we generated our chances overall. It was a great team effort all around."
From the beginning to the end, UNH remained on its toes, causing the Huskies to turn over the puck. New Hampshire was setting up plays in the offensive zone with ease, however struggled in the first few minutes to get a solid shot on net.
The 'Cats broke the kinks and capitalized on a golden opportunity 7:58 into the period. Hannah Armstrong broke the stalemate off a clean breakaway where she was able to beat goaltender Elaine Chuli from right to left trickling the puck just behind the goal line.
Less than two minutes later, New Hampshire tallied their second goal of the period off the stick of freshman forward Brittney Redlick. The goal was created when Redlick broke away from the opposing team in the neutral zone that allowed her room to take a slap shot from the top of the blue line.
With a little bit of luck, the puck took a funny bounce as Chuli misread the direction, which cost a larger deficit over UConn's head.
New Hampshire continued to dominate for the rest of the period, but was only able to get two goals on the board.
The Huskies however had an opportunity with two minutes left in the period to get a tally of their own, but a hustling Crossley was able to back check and poke the puck away from danger.
After one period of play, UNH held a 2-0 lead. UNH also managed to lead in shots for the period by a total of 11 to seven.
As the second period took course, New Hampshire remained consistent with their level of play. They took shots, crashed the net and back checked.
Defensively, Gilligan played on her head by shutting out the Huskies for the second period in a row as the defense as a whole remained steadily sound.
The 'Cats tallied their third goal of the game with 4:21 left in the period off the stick of Hannah Armstrong who picked up her second goal of the night.
Armstrong fired a shot from the left faceoff circle picking up her own rebound and made a wrap around the net hitting the top left corner.
New Hampshire led 3-0 after two, and outshot the Huskies 10 to seven in the period.
The third period of action stayed much of the previous two as New Hampshire continued to dominate offensively and defensively. Hannah Armstrong added a hat trick to her stellar performance by tallying her third goal at 3:18 into the period.
It came from a series of shots in the front of the crease that then triggered an open rebound for Armstrong to burry top left corner giving the Wildcats a commanding 4-0 lead.
The remainder of the period consisted of a strong stand in net by UNH goaltender Jenn Gilligan who recorded her second shutout of the season, saving 21 shots.
In the end of action, New Hampshire prevailed 4-0. The Wildcats outshot the Huskies over the course of the game by a total of 34-21.
New Hampshire will pick up Hockey East action as they travel to Providence to take on the Friars on Friday, Feb. 15. The puck drop is set for 7 p.m.
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