By Mark Fraenkel
The Boston University women’s hockey team began the season with a weekend sweep of the University of New Hampshire, but that would be one of their only two sweeps all season. After initial strong weekends against Northeastern, UNH, and Merrimack, the team struggled to stay consistent and productive for a majority of the year.
“We were a little bit challenged offensively and without a doubt,” Head Coach Brian Durocher said. “That was the recurring theme. As the year went along, you know, too many games with shoutouts or one goal scored and you know, if you can’t get that second one or maybe even the third one –– it became frustrating and we couldn’t change the complexion of a game.”
After playing inconsistently through the months of October and November, the Terriers began their best stretch of the season towards the end of November. After a thrilling win over rival Boston College at Walter Brown Arena before Thanksgiving, BU swept Merrimack in the first week of December.
However, the hot streak would end on Wednesday before the end of the fall semester in New Haven, Connecticut. Despite goals from senior forward Emma Wuthrich and senior forward Mackenna Parker, the Terriers fell to the Yale Bulldogs, a Frozen Four team, 3-2.
“I think we were in a good place, a good position,” Durocher said. ”We just couldn’t get the tying goal or get a win but we still went out of the break in [a] pretty good position.”
After a tough conclusion to the fall semester, BU opened the New Year in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Drawing a tie with Syracuse, a team that would reach the NCAA tournament, the Terriers lost in the shootout to determine advancement in the tournament. The next day, the Penn State Nittany Lions shut out the Terriers, 3-0.
“We were in a good place at the break but we started with a game that you know we tied with Syracuse and lost the shootout so we didn’t get into the championship game,” Durocher said. “We ended up playing Penn State and they squelched our offense and beat us three nothing but from there I still felt we came ready to play.”
After dealing with some game cancellations early in January, nationally ranked Northeastern swept the Terriers in a home-and-home series split between Jan. 15 and the 21.
Durocher said he was impressed by the Huskies throughout their Hockey East championship season. But those two losses represented the final inflection point in the long season.
“I think that Northeastern was in their own elite this year,” he said. “And credit to them for winning,” Durocher added.
The Terriers would temporarily bounce back. Freshman forward Kylie Roberts scored two goals and sophomore defenseman Julia Shuanessy and freshman forward Christina Vote each added goals in a Jan. 28 4-3 win over Holy Cross.
However, the struggles would only continue during the Beanpot. BU would lose to both Harvard and Northeastern by three goals each in their two Beanpot games.
From there, the Terriers never really found their footing. The season somewhat inevitably ended at the hands of the University of Connecticut in the Hockey East Quarterfinals.
Durocher was not ready to announce who would be returning to the roster in the 2022-2023 season. The Terriers do have a young core, including Lacey Martin, Julia Shaunessy, Madison Cardaci, Christina Vote, and goaltender Callie Shanahan.
BU will look to rebuild next season and compete both in Hockey East and nationally as the makeup of their roster is still up in the air.