The fourth-seeded University of Maine women’s hockey team will host its first ever Hockey East playoff series this weekend when No. 5 University of Connecticut comes to Alfond Arena in Orono for a best-of-three quarterfinal series.
The Black Bears have lost six straight, including setbacks to UConn, 2-1 in overtime and 6-2 last weekend in Orono.
The teams will play at 7 p.m. Friday and at 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Sunday is the if- necessary game.
Maine is 10-18-3 overall, 9-11-1 in Hockey East, while UConn is 9-17-8 and 5-11-5.
“The way we have been playing is unacceptable,” said Maine coach Richard Reichenbach. “UConn came in here last weekend with a mission to move up the standings, and they embarrassed us.
“We checked out with six seconds left in overtime in Saturday’s game and UConn scored. Our girls are upset, irritated and pissed off. Hopefully, that will show in the way they play this weekend,” he added.
He said the positive aspect is that his team has showed “that it can play at the highest level of hockey. But we haven’t been able to put it together for 60 minutes.
“We need to have the mentality we had at the end of last year and the first half of this season. We have to prove we’re good. We have to use our speed,” he said.
He said UConn is a “big strong team with good scoring depth and the best goalie in the league outside of [Maine’s] Meghann [Treacy].”
Maine has been led by left wing Hailey Browne (7 goals, 10 assists), RW Emilie Brigham (7 & 9), center Jennifer More (9 & 6), LW Audra Richards (8 & 7) and C Brooke Stacey (4 & 7); defensemen Kelsey MacSorley (6 & 4) and Brittany Huneke (0 & 9) and goalie Treacy (9-16-2, 2.45 goals-against average, .930 save percentage). MacSorley’s six goals lead Hockey East defensemen.
He said Stacey and Huneke have “really elevated their games,” Treacy has been a “wall,” and they have been bolstered by the return from injury by their fastest skater, center Jillian Langtry. UConn has been guided by linemates LW Sarah MacDonnell (10 & 18), C Emily Snodgrass (15 & 8) and RW Kayla Campero (9 & 10) along with defensemen Leah Lum (4 & 15) and Caitlin Hewes (3 & 12) and goalie Elaine Chuli (6-11-5, 3,15, .918).
Husson, Thomas, MMA players honored
Husson University junior forward Trevon Butler and Thomas College junior forward Levi Barnes were named to the All-North Atlantic Conference men’s basketball first team on Thursday while Husson sophomore guard Raheem Anderson and senior guard Aaron Willis earned second-team selections.
Colby-Sawyer’s Peter Donato, Lyndon State’s David Johnson and New England College’s Dezron Wilson also gained first-team honors, and Green Mountain’s Cameron Anderson, Castleton’s Carnelius Green and Colby-Sawyer’s Wol Majong were named to the second team.
Donato, a Portland native, also was named the conference player and defensive player of the year and Castleton’s Pavin Parrish was named rookie of the year. Colby-Sawyer’s Bill Foti and NEC’s Charlie Mason were named co-coaches of the year.
The All-NAC women’s basketball team also was announced with Maine Maritime Academy junior guard Mary Badeen earning a first-team selection, and Husson sophomore guard Chandler Guerrette and junior guard Victoria McIntyre and University of Maine at Farmington junior forward Meghan Smith received second-team honors.
NEC’s Taylor Burgess and Kayla Lawlor were named to the first team along with Castleton’s Jade Desroches and Meghan O’Sullivan. Colby-Sawyer’s Kelsey Cahill and Lexi Iannone rounded out the second team.
Player-of-the year honors also went to Desroches, and Cahill was named defensive player of the year. Lyndon’s Mikayla Hodge was selected as the league’s rookie of the year and Castleton’s Tim Barrett was named coach of the year.