BOSTON, Mass. – As the third-seed in this year's New England Hockey Conference Tournament, women's ice hockey (18-7-0, 12-5-0 NEHC) will look to hoist their second straight tournament title, but will first have to go through the sixth-seeded Seahawks of Salve Regina University (6-18-1, 5-11-1 NEHC) on Saturday, February 25 in the quarterfinal match-up.
What – 2017 New England Hockey Conference Tournament Quarterfinal Round
Who - #6 Salve Regina University
Where – Edward T. Barry Ice Rink, Boston, Mass.
When – Saturday, February 25 - 3:00 PM
HOW THEY GOT HERE
For the second straight season UMass Boston will enter this year's conference tournament as the third-seed, making it a program first. The Beacons, who also set the program mark for wins in a season with 18, have continued to be one of the most consistent teams this season in the NEHC. The Beacons secured the third-seed with a huge 3-2 win over Manhattanville College in the regular season finale.
November 18 – UMass Boston 4, Salve Regina University 2
January 14 – UMass Boston 3, Salve Regina University 0
First Meeting – November 4, 2003
Total Games Played – 29
UMass Boston Wins – 16
Salve Regina Wins – 12
Ties - 1
Postseason Meetings – 2 (UMB 1, SRU )
2/28/09 – Salve Regina University 7, UMass Boston 2 (Quarterfinal)
2/26/11 – UMass Boston 3, Salve Regina University 2 (Quarterfinal)
UMass Boston – 1 (2016)
Salve Regina University – 0
ABOUT THE BEACONS
Led by Second Team All-Conference selection Rachel Myette (Duxbury, Mass.), the Beacons continued to achieve program milestones. Not only do they boast a program record 18 wins overall, but they are also tied for the record for most home victories at 10. The Beacons also maintained a spot in the top-10 national-rankings for multiple weeks. In the preseason, UMass Boston received their first, first place vote as a member of the New England Hockey Conference. Under the direction of second year head coach Lindsay Berman, the Beacons posted an 8-3 record in the first half of the campaign. After the New Year, the Beacons continued to roll and will enter this year's tournament riding a five game win-streak, with three of those victories coming in overtime.
Kaleigh Beauregard (Gaylord, Mich.) has paced the Beacons offense this year with her 17 points and nine goals. Emily Harris (Littleton, Colo.) has also made an immediate impact in her first season in a Beacons sweater posting 15 points along with nine assists.
Defensively, senior Kat Armstrong (Kingston, Ont.) is playing some of her best hockey to-date and leads the team with a 10 assists. The native of Canada, sits with a +8 on-ice rating, and has combined for 34 blocked shots, while sophomore linemate Arielle Gallucci (Warren, N.J.) leads the defense with 41 blocked shots and a +12 rating.
Between the pipes Myette has combined for 486 saves to put her career total at 1,015, making her just the third Beacons goaltender to reach that mark. She enters Saturday's contest with a .933 save percentage and is currently allowing 2.05 goals against per game. Of the team's 18 wins, 11 belong to the Duxbury native, who became just the second goaltender in program history to be named a two-time All-Conference honoree.
ABOUT THE SEAHAWKS
Salve Regina University comes into the conference tournament as one of the hottest teams in the second half of the season. After an absolute dismal start to the year, the Seahawks have been able to gain some late momentum, and have recorded five of their six wins over the last nine games.
The Seahawks will definitely look to the duo of Amanda Cronin and Taylor Chisholm in Saturday's quarterfinal. The duo enter this year's tournament with a combined 42 points, with Cronin leading the team with 15 goals. Cronin was named a Second Team All-Conference honoree earlier in the week, and is also tied for the team lead in assists with Chisholm at nine a-piece.
Over the last four games, Chisholm exploded offensively totaling nine points (3g, 6a) to lead the Salve to a 2-2 record and the sixth-seed. Jennifer O'Connell will be the go-to netminder for Salve having played all but six minutes this season. O'Connell enters the tournament with a .918 save percentage and a 3.03 goals against average, having allowed 75 goals against in 1,487 minutes of action.
The winner of Saturday's contest will advance to the semi-final round of the tournament, which will be played at the highest remaining seed after the quarterfinal round. The winner of this year's tournament will earn the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament.