By: Brian Lombardo
BOSTON – As the 2018-19 regular season began for the Terriers they quickly found out that a full 60-minute game will have to be played in order to find success once again in Hockey East.
Cross-town foe Northeastern University appeared to be in mid-season form when they took to the ice on Friday night. The Terriers knew that the Huskies were among the deepest and most talented teams in Hockey East, but no one expected Northeastern to replace the talent they lost so seamlessly.
Cue the soon to be instant offensive duo in Chloe Aurard and Alina Mueller. The two NU freshmen were European national league team members, both appearing in the 2018 Olympics: Aurard for France and Mueller for Switzerland.
Both forwards joined senior Kasidy Anderson on the Huskies’ top line, making for powerhouse trio.
On Friday, the Terriers helped the Huskies to five power play opportunities. Northeastern made the lack of discipline hurt in the first period by connecting for two power play goals.
It didn’t get much better for the Terriers as NU goaltender Aerin Frankel played phenomenally, saving all 28 shots the Terriers put on goal. The Huskies sophomore goaltender picked up right where she left off last season, leading the Huskies to the Hockey East Tournament title game.
The Huskies added two more goals in the second frame, including Anderson’s second of the game which came short-handed. A fifth goal sealed the shutout in the third period.
BU Head Coach Brian Durocher knew that his team was going to need to feel things out. He referenced that the times have changed and there is no longer a presence like that of Victoria Bach or Rebecca Leslie (both class of 2017) around to shoulder the load offensively.
“We had plenty of chances [Friday night], we just didn’t finish,” Durocher said postgame. “We just have to change the complexion early [Saturday] and find one.”
It’s safe to say that Durocher’s message was received by the team, as the quick turnaround from Friday night’s affair allowed the team to hit the reset button. Still seeking their first goal of the season, the Terriers came out flying during Saturday’s matinee, dictating the pace of play against the Huskies.
Both teams marched out nearly the same lineups, the only change came in goal for Northeastern as the sophomore Frankel gave way to the senior and captain of the Huskies, Brittany Bugalski. The move initially became costly for Northeastern.
The Terriers wasted no time in the first, shooting the puck at will and getting three shots past the netminder Bugalski in the period.
Jesse Compher was the recipient of the first goal of the season. After a strong showing Friday night which left her with nothing to show for in the box score, Compher continued to fight around the net and was rewarded with her first. The goal brought another first as the lone assist on the goal was awarded to freshman Courtney Correia, her first collegiate point.
Northeastern went on the power play soon after the Compher goal and converted the opportunity to tie the game at one. Then redshirt junior and captain Sammy Davis used her speed to get around the defense and put on past Bugalski. Her first of the season came in her first regular season game since the 2016-17 campaign. The goal was assited by Compher, her second point of the day, and Alex Allan, making it her first collegiate point as well.
The Terriers’ third mark of the period was from Nara Elia on the power play. Assisted by Davis, and Abby Cook. Three first period goals was an unlikely feat for the Huskies goaltender Bugalski. From there she settled into play and held the Terriers scoreless for the remainder of the game.
Terrier goalie Corinne Schroeder was sharp on Saturday. In the second period, the Huskies struck for two goals. Mueller with the first and Veronika Pettey with the second on the power play.
Both teams played a clean third period, so the game went to an extra frame in hopes of finding a winner. In the overtime, the teams traded quality chances, but the goaltenders proved to be too much. The game ended with score at three a piece.
Durocher credited Bugalski for settling in and keeping the Terriers silent offensively, but he was happy to see that his Terriers bounced back.
“I think [Bugalski] played real nice the last forty minutes,” he said. “Our team really competed around the front of our net and I think that was the significant difference from yesterday.”
With the Terriers skating to a tie with the ninth ranked Huskies, they pick up their first point of the season in Hockey East play. 0-1-1 BU takes the ice next Friday, Oct. 12 at 3-0-1 Merrimack College. Puck drop is set for 7 p.m.