#2 Women's Hockey Rallies Past #7 Salve Regina To Reach NEHC Semifinals

#2 Women's Hockey Rallies Past #7 Salve Regina To Reach NEHC Semifinals

BOSTON, Mass.—#2 UMass Boston scored the final four goals of Saturday's New England Hockey Conference Quarterfinal, to rally past #7 Salve Regina University at the Edward T. Barry Ice Rink. 

THE BASICS

#2 UMass Boston 5, #7 Salve Regina University 2

(UMass Boston 11-11-4)
(Salve Regina 4-21-1)

HOW IT HAPPENED 

After going down 2-1 midway through the second period, UMass Boston managed to tie the game late in the second, and then scored all three goals in the final stanza.

With the win, #2 UMass Boston will host #3 Castleton University in the NEHC Semifinals on Saturday February 24 at 3 p.m. The two teams squared off in the 2016 semis, with UMass Boston winning in overtime.

Junior Kaleigh Beauregard (Gaylord, Mich.) scored the game-winning goal, added an assist and finished a team-best +4 on the afternoon. Senior Jane Morrisette (Duxbury, Mass.) added the game-tying goal, while Rachel Peacock (Billerica, Mass.), Emily Harris (Littleton, Colo.) and Julia Nolan (Duxbury, Mass.) also scored in the victory.

UMass Boston senior netminder Rachel Myette (Dubxury, Mass.) made 22 saves on 24 shots to improve to 5-1 all-time in the NEHC Tournament. Myette stopped 11 of 13 shots in the second period to keep the Beacons in the game.

Salve Regina junior goalie Jennifer O'Connell made 41 saves on 46 shots in the final game of her junior season. O'Connell stopped 14 shots in the first period, 11 more in the second and 16 in the final stanza. 

Freshmen Gabi Hillner and Rebecca Hasting each scored in the second period for the visitors.

UMass Boston was all over the Seahawks to begin the game and finally capitalized at the 4:19 mark. Beauregard sprang Peacock for a 1-on-1 with O'Connell and Peacock fired a wrister over O'Connell's shoulder for a 1-0 lead.

Despite dominating the period, UMass Boston couldn't add a second goal, despite a 15-6 shot advantage.

Salve Regina turned the tide at the 7:08 mark of the second period. With the Beacons on the penalty kill for the fourth time, Hillner whistled a shot past Myette-who was blinded by traffic in front 

The Seahawks kept the momentum going and took their only lead of the game at 13:23. Leading scorer Taylor Chisholm took the puck behind the net and sent a centering feed in front for Hasting, who beat Myette through the five-hole on a one-timer. 

It looked like the Seahawks were going to go into the third with a one-goal lead until some late period heroics from Morrisette. After a Seahawk player tripped at the Beacons' blue line, Morrisette collected the puck and went the other way with 10 seconds left in the stanza. She brought it into the zone and skated towards the slot, before unleashing a high shot that tipped off O'Connell's glove and in with 0.7 seconds left in the period. 

UMass Boston took the lead for good on a controversial play at 8:45 into the third. Beauregard skated the puck into the zone on a 2-on-1 and unleashed a hard shot that pinged off a bar and out. The referee initially ruled no-goal and the two teams continued on until the next whistle. After a very long conversation between the four officials, the referees overruled the initial call and gave the Beacons a 3-2 lead.

The Beacons capitalized from there, as they tripled their lead in the next five minutes. 

Nolan tipped home a Katie Jeter (Winthrop, Mass.) shot from the point at 10:16 to make it 4-2, with Katie Barry (Abington, Mass.) picking up the second assist.

Harris made it 5-2 at 13:36, as she collected a Katie Leffler (Key Largo, Fla.) rebound and rushed the net. Harris' initial shot was knocked down by O'Connell, but it squirted behind the goalie and Harris tapped home her own rebound for a 5-2 advantage. 

BY THE NUMBERS

  • UMass Boston outshot the Seahawks 46-24 and earned a 28-24 edge in face-offs.
  • Salve went 1-6 on the power-play, while the Beacons were held to an 0-4 outing.
  • With the win, UMass Boston improved to 2-1 all-time against the Seahawks in the postseason. The Beacons have won eight-straight meetings and lead the all-time series 20-12-1.
  • Morrisette has now scored 10 goals in her past 10 games.
  • UMass Boston has advanced to the conference semifinals for a program-record six-straight years.

WHO'S NEXT  

#2 UMass Boston will host #3 Castleton University in the NEHC Semifinals next Saturday at 3 p.m.