Women’s Hockey Tries for First Win Against Maine

Tom Krosnowski

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Photo: Liz Flynn

The Quinnipiac Women’s Ice Hockey team is still looking for that elusive first win after dropping a hard-fought contest against Maine in overtime last night, 2-1. The Bobcats sit at 0-3-0 while the Black Bears are 1-0-0. The two teams will wrap up their season series on Saturday at 3 p.m. at the People’s United Center in Hamden, Connecticut.

 

Players to Watch:

 

Quinnipiac: Lexie Adzija

 

Last year, the Bobcats were boosted by the presence of seven freshmen who each contributed in their own way to the big club. This year, the new recruits are also off to a fast start. Lexie Adjiza has led the way with a goal and two assists in her three games, and was named ECAC rookie of the week for her efforts last week. Adjiza picked up her first goal of the season in last night’s loss, the lone Quinnipiac tally in the contest. So far, Adjiza has checked all of the boxes that Cass Turner looks for in a first-year contributor. She’s fast, she’s always on the puck, and she’s not scared to take chances.

 

Maine: Teresa Vanisova

 

Everything for the Maine Black Bears on offense runs through junior center Teresa Vanisova. She led the team last year in goals, assists, points, shots, game-winning goals, plus-minus, and even penalty minutes. Last year, she was sixth in the Hockey East Conference and 11th in the nation with 46 points. Friday night, it was more of the same for Vanisova, who scored both of the Black Bears’ goals, including an overtime winner. The Bobcats are going to have to contain Vanisova today if they want to win their first game of the season.

Keys to the Game:

 

Quinnipiac: Be Aggressive on Offense

 

It’s no secret that the offense will be the focal point for this year’s Bobcats if they are going to go deep in the playoffs. While the defense and goaltending are solid, the offense runs hot and cold and can be too one-dimensional sometimes. Last night, the Bobcats were limited to just 10 shots on goal, and again were stifled on the power play. The team is 0-10 on the power play and has just five goals in its first three games. Last year, the team had just three come-from-behind wins, and is still looking for its first this year. If the Bobcats can find their identity and score first, they’ll have a chance. If not, it’ll be tough sledding against a tough Black Bears squad.

 

Maine: Improved Special Teams

 

The Black Bears finished a program-best third in Hockey East last year and won a playoff series for the first time in club history. However, their special teams remained somewhat lackluster. Maine only converted on six percent of its power plays, although its penalty kill was solid at 86.1 percent. Add it all up, and the total special teams efficiency (PP% + PK%) was just 92.1 percent, well below the 100 percent figure that teams shoot for. Last night though, the Black Bears were ferocious on special teams. They went 1-3 on the power play and killed off a critical Quinnipiac power play in overtime shortly before Vanisova scored the winner. If Maine is going to take the big leap this year, they’ll need their special teams to keep being special moving forward.

 

The Game 

Be sure to tune in to @QBSN’s broadcast of Maine vs. Quinnipiac at the People’s United Center in Hamden, Connecticut at 3 p.m. Mike Dalton and Tom Krosnowski will be on the call for this matchup. Follow them on Twitter here:  @MikeJDalton5 and @Tkro42.