BOSTON –- Behind four goals from four different scorers, No. 10 Northeastern (16-10-2) defeated No. 2 Boston College (21-5-2) 4-3 in the final of the 35th annual Women’s Beanpot on Tuesday night at Matthews Arena. The tournament title is the second in a row for the Red and Black, and their 16th overall.
Sophomore forward Kendall Coyne compiled a 3-1-4 scoring line during the tournament, and was named Beanpot MVP for her efforts. Classmate and netminder Chloe Desjardins turned aside 36-of-39 shots in the triumph, winning the prestigious Bertagna Award, presented annually to the Beanpot’s top goaltender.
“It was very different for me this year being my first year playing in the Beanpot,” said Desjardins. It’s good for my confidence, too.”
Northeastern trailed 1-0 and 2-1 in the contest’s early going, before heading to the deciding third period leading 3-2. After BC’s Emily Field tied the contest midway through the final frame, a Katie MacSorley deflection off a Maggie Brennolt blast put the Huskies up for good. MacSorley was joined in the goal column by Brittany Esposito, Casey Pickett and Paige Savage. Esposito, Savage and Kelly Wallace all registered multi-point outings for the Huskies in the win, each notching two.
“That was one of the most exciting games I’ve been a part of here at Northeastern,” said head coach Dave Flint. “It was fast paced, up and down. I thought we came out kind of slow, and I think it was due to nerves, but I liked how we competed for the rest of the game.”
NU held a slim 41-39 advantage in shots on goal for the contest, including 13 during their 2-of-5 power play performance. Boston College was 0-of-3 on the man advantage.
The teams traded chances throughout an up-tempo first period, with BC holding a 15-11 edge in shots and netting the frame’s lone goal less than two minutes into play.
The Eagles bolted out to an early lead when Dana Trivigno netted her 12th goal of the season just 1:18 into the contest. After taking a drop pass from Ashley Motherwell, Trivigno skated up to the top of the left faceoff dot before sending a shot on goal that redirected off the stick of an NU defender and into the goal.
“I think we responded well because of our bench behavior,” said Coyne. “It’s something we’ve been working on all season. Our bench attitude this game was second to none compared to what we’ve had in the past.”
Casey Pickett nearly leveled the score four minutes later when she picked off a soft pass in the defensive zone, and took it coast-to-coast for a shot that was blocked by Dru Burns at the last second.
Desjardins kept it 1-0 with 11:45 left in the frame when she flashed a pad save on Alex Carpenter, resulting in a tripping call on Kate Leary. On the ensuing Husky power play, Pickett rifled a one-timer from the right faceoff dot off a pass from Maggie DiMasi that rang off the post and into the corner.
With BC on the power play with 7:22 to go in the frame, Desjardins turned aside back-to-back chances from Burns, including a sprawling save across the crease on a rebound bid.
NU came out aggressive in the second period throwing shots on goal from all angles and crashing the net in search of rebound opportunities. Rachel Llanes tested Boyles five minutes in when she stole an outlet pass and ripped a shot from the left side that Boyles covered for a faceoff.
During an abbreviated five-on-three power play midway through the frame, the Huskies cashed in as Brittany Esposito netted her seventh of the season on a shot from a tough angle. Tori Hickel began the play at the point with a pass down to Paige Savage at the right dot. Savage, keeping her composure, settled the puck before threading a pass down to Esposito below the left faceoff circle. Esposito then fired a wrister over the shoulder of Boyles to make it 1-1 with 11:53 left in the stanza.
BC would regain the lead during four-on-four play with 5:07 left in the frame when Melissa Bizarri scored her 13th goal of the season. After Alex Carpenter sent the puck out of the BC zone and onto the stick of Emily Pfalzer, Pfalzer skated it into the zone before dropping to Bizarri atop the faceoff circle. Bizarri then sent a wrist shot on goal that seemed to handcuff Desjardins before beating her in the top corner.
Northeastern would respond with 2:10 remaining in the second when Pickett buried her 16th goal of the season with NU on the power play. After Kendall Coyne skated the puck out from behind the net trying to stuff it past Boyles, Kelly Wallace attempted to hammer home the rebound, but the puck popped out to Pickett on the doorstep, who roofed a backhand over the shoulder of Boyles for the score.
NU took its first lead of the game 47 seconds later as Paige Savage rocketed a loose puck through the pads of Boyles for her sixth goal of the year. After Wallace won the faceoff, Esposito had a shot on goal that was blocked. Wallace got a stick on the rebound, tipping it out to Savage who completed the play for a 3-2 Husky lead.
The Northeastern penalty killing unit was put to the test in the opening minutes of the third period when NU was whistled for consecutive penalties within the first five minutes of the frame. BC almost tied the game in the waning seconds of the man advantage when Motherwell redirected a shot from Blake Bolden at the point off the bottom of the right post, giving just enough time for NU to clear.
Boston College would tie it up at 3-3 with 10:59 left when Emily Field took it from end to end, through the NU defense and then snuck a shot under the pad of Desjardins for the score.
The Huskies struck back 1:19 later when Katie MacSorley scored her eighth goal of the season when she tipped home a shot from Maggie Brennolt at the point.
Colleen Murphy created a scoring bid with less than seven minutes left in the third when she picked off a clearing attempt and dropped a pass to Llanes joining the play. Llanes when fired a one-timer that hit the left post.
Boston College would pull Boyles in favor of the extra skater with 1:08 left in regulation, but the Huskies weathered the storm to skate away with their 16th Beanpot title.
“I think we need to use this as momentum,” Flint said. “I’ve been trying to get the team to believe all year that when we compete as a unit, they can beat anybody. I think we’ve shown that the past two weeks beating the No. 3 and No. 2 team in the country; it doesn’t get much better than that.”