Terriers Try to Gain Ground in Hockey East Against Vermont

BOSTON – This Friday and Saturday, BU (2-3-3, 2-3-3 WHEA) will host Vermont (2-6-3, 2-5-1 WHEA) in a two-game set at Walter Brown Arena. These are the Terriers’ first home games since Oct. 20, and a couple wins could go a long way in aiding BU’s case for the postseason.

The Terriers are coming off of their first road win of the season last Friday, defeating the UConn Huskies, 4-1. Sophomore Jesse Compher and redshirt junior Sammy Davis had identical stat lines, each finding the back of the net twice and assisting the other on one goal. Davis (6 goals, 2 assists) leads the team in scoring, while Compher (4 goals, 7 assists) holds the Terriers’ lead in points and has notched a point in the five straight contests.

Vermont, on the other hand, has dropped their last two games, most recently falling to Providence, 2-0, on Nov. 11. The Catamounts have not won a game in two weeks and have dipped to eighth place in Hockey East standings. Three points in this weekend set, though, would put UVM in a tie with BU for fifth.

These two teams faced each other three times last season, and the road team won every matchup. Most recently, the Catamounts defeated the Terriers 5-1 on Feb. 5 last season. Compher scored the lone goal for BU, while then-sophomore Eve-Audrey Picard posted her third hat trick of the season. This year, Picard (3 goals, 3 assists) leads her team in nearly every offensive category and figures to play a big role in UVM’s game plan this weekend.

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Since she put up two scoreless periods against Northeastern on Oct. 30, freshman Blanka Skodova has started every other game for UVM, which puts her in line for the goaltending duties in Friday’s match. In three starts, Skodova as a 1.63 goals-against-average with a .943 save percentage. Compared to senior Melissa Black’s 2.16 GAA and .920 SV%, Skodova could very well use these two contests to bolster her case to become the full-time starter.

The UVM goaltending situation is reminiscent of BU’s net last season, when Corinne Schroeder wrestled starting duties from then-senior Erin O’Neil. Now a sophomore, Schroeder has a lock on her position, but that’s not to say she didn’t struggle earlier this season. She was roughed up in the season opener, a 5-0 loss to NU, but she has allowed just 1.78 goals per game with a .941 save percentage in her six starts since. As she always is, Schroeder will be a key cog in the Terriers’ engine this weekend.

When you’re watching the games this weekend, pay close attention in the final two minutes of every period. BU is a WHEA-best +5 (5 goals scored, 0 goals allowed) in the last tenth of each period, while UVM ranks ninth at -6 (1 scored, 7 allowed).

The Terriers average two assists per goal in the final two minutes. With that kind of unselfish play at the end of each period, it’s easy to see why BU has scored the second most goals in those two-minute drill scenarios. Don’t be surprised if you see the Terriers steal a goal – or even steal the game – in the two minutes before intermission this weekend.

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