Quinnipiac, Princeton Come to Cambridge in Key Weekend for No. 7/8 Women's Hockey
Harvard enters the weekend in second place in the ECAC Hockey standings (Kevin Burns).
Complete Game Notes (pdf)
Harvard looks to maintain its place at No. 2 in the ECAC standings as it welcomes league foes Quinnipiac and Princeton for a key conference weekend. Harvard enters the weekend one point ahead of Quinnipiac in the standings and seven points up on the Tigers.
The Harvard-Quinnipiac series is a relatively young one as the teams have faced each other just 13 times, beginning in 2005-06. Harvard captured victories in the first nine meetings, but has gone 1-2-1 in the last four for a 10-2-1 lead in the all-time series.
Harvard's resiliency showed earlier this season in a showdown with then-league-leading Quinnipiac, as the Crimson fought back from one- and two-goal deficits to force a 3-3 tie. Kaitlin Spurling's tally just 47 seconds into the second period knotted the score at 1-1, but a pair of Bobcat goals in the frame put Harvard in a 3-1 hole heading into the third.
Lyndsey Fry brought Harvard to within one 3:41 into the third period and Marissa Gedman's power-play slapshot forced the overtime period. In overtime, Laura Bellamy turned aside six threatening shots to seal the 3-3 final.
Princeton represents one of Harvard's oldest rivals, as the two teams have squared off 70 times since their first meeting during the 1978-79 season. Harvard maintains a slim lead in the all-time series with a 36-30-4 record against the Tigers, and has captured victories in seven of the last 13 meetings.
The Princeton defense made a statement in the teams' first meeting this season, as the Tigers held the Crimson to a conference season-low total of 20 shots on net in a 3-0 blanking. Princeton was 1-for-6 on the power play and Sally Butler netted goals late in the first period and early in the third to spark the Tiger offense in the win.
Last Time Out
The Crimson ran into a determined Boston University squad Tuesday in the opening round of the 34th Women's Beanpot, dropping a 5-2 decision to the Terriers at Walter Brown Arena.
Harvard came alive in the third period, getting two goals back after starting the period with a five-goal deficit. On its ninth power play of the evening, the Crimson finally broke through. Josephine Pucci ripped a shot from the point that was tipped on net by Kaitlin Spurling. Kerrin Sperry made the initial save, but Sarah Edney was there to put home the rebound at 11:34 of the third. Jillian Dempsey netted the second Harvard goal, wristing a shot off a BU defender from a Marissa Gedman shot and past Sperry. Harvard ended the game on a penalty, but was unable to find a third tally.
Shut It Down
Harvard enters the game against Quinnipiac riding a three-game conference shutout streak, its longest since a similar stretch during the 2007-08 season. Four of Harvard's last five wins have come via shutout and have all come during conference play. Since the New Year, Harvard has allowed just 17 goals in 10 games and compiled a 6-3-1 overall record.
Big Time Bellamy
After a stellar weekend in New Haven, Conn., and Providence, R.I., junior goalie Laura Bellamy was named ECAC Goalie of the Week Jan. 31. The honor marks the second time she has received the nod this season and third in her career.
Bellamy hasn't allowed a goal in 11 periods of ECAC play, the longest stretch of her career. The last time a Harvard goalie had a stretch of at least three-straight shutouts was 2007-08 when Christina Kessler '10 blanked Colgate (4-0), Boston College (7-0) and St. Lawrence (2-0) in consecutive contests.
The junior assistant captain now has 12 shutouts in her career, placing her fourth in program history and one away from tying Erin Villiotte's '95 mark of 13. Bellamy also ranks tied for fourth for shutouts in a season with five, tying Emily Vitt '04 in 2003-04. She is currently tied for second in the nation with five clean sheets on the season.
An Honor for Chu
After a decorated college hockey career at Harvard, Julie Chu '06-07 was recently inducted into the Connecticut Hockey Hall of Fame as a part of its class of 2012. Chu, a Bridgeport, Conn., native, took home the Patty Kazmaier Award in 2007, was a four-time All-America selection and three-time Olympian. Chu is one of seven members of the class of 2012 and will be honored in an induction ceremony March 10 at the XL Center in Hartford.
In the 8-0 win over Yale Jan. 27, seven different Harvard players scored goals. It marked the first time since the 2004-05 season that seven different Harvard skaters scored in a game. The last time it happened was also against Yale, an 11-2 Harvard win Jan. 29, 2005.
Beanpot Hall of Fame 2012
Nicole Corriero '05 will be inducted into the Beanpot Hall of Fame this year, making her the fifth Harvard player to receive the honor. With 14 points on eight goals and six assists in four career Beanpots, Corriero ranks tied for 12th in all-time tournament scoring and fifth among Harvard players. She led Harvard to four consecutive Beanpot Championships from 2002-05, taking home tournament Most Valuable Player honors as a senior and becoming the seventh-consecutive Crimson player to earn the MVP nod. A two-time All-American, Corriero finished her Harvard career as the fourth-highest career point scorer in program history with 265 points on 150 goals and 115 assists. She also holds the program records for goals in a season with 59, points in a game with 10 and goals in a game with six. Corriero was named ECAC Hockey and Ivy League Player of the Year in 2005, after taking home ECAC and Ivy Rookie of the Year honors in 2002.
A New Year's Resolution
Since the start of 2012, the Harvard penalty kill has been much improved. The Crimson has allowed just three power-play goals in ten games since the New Year, and has killed 29 of 32 opponent power plays. Harvard has killed its last 17 penalties in ECAC action, including seven against Colgate two weekends ago.
Third Period Poise
While the second period had been Harvard's strongest in terms of goals scored, the Crimson is steadily becoming a third period team in terms of scoring. In its 10 games since the New Year, Harvard has scored multiple third-period goals in five of them, including three each in wins over Colgate, Rensselaer and Yale. In those 10 games, Harvard has outscored opponents, 15-2, in the third period, representing both its highest goal total and best goal differential.
This year, Harvard played 10 games in the month of January, making it the busiest January in the history of the program. February is typically the busiest month for Harvard and the Crimson played a program-high 11 games in February of 2008 and '09.
After holding an opponent to fewer than 20 shots in a game just three times this season heading into Jan. 13, the Crimson held both the Dutchwomen and the Engineers below that threshold in the weekend sweep. The following weekend, Harvard allowed a then-season-low 14 shots to No. 3 Cornell in a 2-0 defeat. The Crimson had its finest defensive performance of the season at Yale, holding the Bulldogs to just nine shots on goal. On the season, Harvard is outshooting its opponents, 662-514.
Rising the Ranks
In its most recent poll, USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine ranked Harvard No. 7 in the nation. The ranking marks Harvard's highest of the 2011-12 season. Harvard joins No. 10 Dartmouth and No. 2 Cornell in the polls, giving ECAC Hockey, and the Ivy League, three nationally-ranked squads.