Recap: UVM (W) 3, McGill 2

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Consider the puck dropped on the 2018/19 UVM hockey season!

And a pretty fun way to start too. McGill is always a pretty tough opponent for a preseason game (and started their USports season with four wins on the bounce including three shutouts), and this year was no exception.

The Martlets opened the scoring about six minutes into this one, and it came via the power play. Kate Devries placed that shot perfectly, ripping a one-timer top-shelf over the glove of Melissa Black to give McGill the lead.

But UVM were able to respond before the period was out. Saana Valkama took a shot from the high slot that hit something before beating Tricia Deguire. It looks like that “something” was a McGill defender, but give Kristina Shanahan credit too on providing good net-front traffic.

Second period means a goalie change, and freshman Blanka Škodová took to the pipes for her college debut and pitched the lone shutout period on the afternoon. The Catamounts went ahead early in the period, as freshman Theresa Schafzahl made her first contribution, setting up a bomb of a shot from Shanahan from the slot.

The third period means another goalie change, as Sierra Natzke got to close this one. Early in the third, McGill got the game tied up again. Jade Downie-Landry with a sweet move to beat Anna Erickson, setting up a two-on-one with Lea Dumais, who tapped home a great feed from Downie-Landry to tie it up.

Midway through the period, UVM would take the lead for good, and it was a case where a bounce went the right way. Abby Cleary tried to send one cross-ice, but it deflected off a McGill defender…right to Sammy Kolowrat, who blasted one past Deguire with Shanahan again being a nuisance in front of the net.

So that’s the scoring summary. Some other thoughts:

  • The preseason exhibition isn’t about winning or losing, but chemistry, cohesion, adapting to play style, and getting up to game speed. So the win, while nice, isn’t really a priority.
  • That said, I really liked that Cleary-Shanahan-Valkama line. Adding an impact freshman like Schafzahl to the top line will help spread the scoring around, I think.
  • The goaltending battle will be interesting. I think Natzke earned some starts with her third period play.
  • Sammy Kolowrat looked amazing. She looked faster than ever, and I think her veteran presence will help Maude Poulin-Labelle on that top pairing.
  • Speaking of the blueline, for how young it was, it looked pretty dang solid. I think Anna Erickson will fit better there than she did at forward.
  • Again, this is just preseason, so try not to overreact even if I may be doing so. The real stuff starts next weekend against a UConn team that’s already played two games.
  • Given how many times UVM was outshot last year, though, it’s nice to have outshot someone right out of the gate, especially a pretty good team like McGill.

The Vermont Hockey Blog Three Stars of the Game

  1. Sammy Kolowrat (UVM) – She’s going to be massively important this year, and she started on the right foot, with a solid all-around game and a game-winning goal.
  2. Kristina Shanahan (UVM) – A goal, an assist, and a role in the one goal she didn’t point on. I think she’s primed for a jump this year.
  3. Saana Valkama (UVM) – Also had a goal, and was active all night. That line could be something with a little more end product.
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Women’s Hockey Season Preview

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Photo: Pat Langlois/Vermont Cynic

It’s that time, folks.

Catamount hockey returns this weekend as UVM women’s hockey hosts the McGill Martlets for the annual exhibition game. The coaches’ poll is out, the teams are on the ice, and the energy of hockey season is here.

For UVM women’s hockey, it’s an interesting year, coming off an up-and-down 2017/18 season that had a few big upsets but also one lengthy winless funk. Let’s break this thing down.

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Hockey East Previews: Boston College

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TIME TO GET HYPE FOR THE SEASON!

We’ll be cranking out these previews once a week with the occasional second one thrown in, as we want everything to be up by the time the puck drops.  (Turns out I’ve abandoned that and am just cranking these out rapid-fire style just to get them done.) They’ll be done in reverse order of the men’s standings.

Today we do the FINAL ONE! We’ll be talking about the Boston College Eagles, who won the regular seasons on both sides last year, but managed to bottle the tournament both times. Can the men return to the NCAA tournament after two years out? And can the women finally get over the hump and grab that elusive national title?

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Hockey East Previews: Northeastern

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TIME TO GET HYPE FOR THE SEASON!

We’ll be cranking out these previews once a week with the occasional second one thrown in, as we want everything to be up by the time the puck drops.  (Turns out I’ve abandoned that and am just cranking these out rapid-fire style just to get them done.) They’ll be done in reverse order of the men’s standings.

Today we look at the Northeastern Huskies, who had a dream season on both sides last season. With many key players graduating, how will the men replace them? And how can the women follow up on their Hockey East title run?

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Hockey East Previews: Providence

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TIME TO GET HYPE FOR THE SEASON!

We’ll be cranking out these previews once a week with the occasional second one thrown in, as we want everything to be up by the time the puck drops.  (Turns out I’ve abandoned that and am just cranking these out rapid-fire style just to get them done.) They’ll be done in reverse order of the men’s standings.

Today we look at the Providence Friars, whose men’s team was the closest Hockey East team to the Frozen Four. Can they get over the hump and into Buffalo this year? And how will the women adjust with a new head coach?

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Hockey East Previews: Boston University

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TIME TO GET HYPE FOR THE SEASON!

We’ll be cranking out these previews once a week with the occasional second one thrown in, as we want everything to be up by the time the puck drops. They’ll be done in reverse order of the men’s standings.

Today we look at the BU Terriers, the second team in Hockey East with a new men’s coach. How will Albie O’Connell differ from David Quinn? And can the women replace the sheer scoring of their two departed stars?

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Hockey East Previews: UConn

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TIME TO GET HYPE FOR THE SEASON!

We’ll be cranking out these previews once a week with the occasional second one thrown in, as we want everything to be up by the time the puck drops. They’ll be done in reverse order of the men’s standings.

Today we look at the UConn Huskies, a team that surprised the crap out of a lot of people last season on both sides. Can the men build on a fifth place finish last year? And how will the women respond to their epic Cinderella tournament run?

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Hockey East Previews: Maine

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TIME TO GET HYPE FOR THE SEASON!

We’ll be cranking out these previews once a week with the occasional second one thrown in, as we want everything to be up by the time the puck drops. They’ll be done in reverse order of the men’s standings.

Today we take a look at the Maine Black Bears, a team that saw a resurgence for both teams last year. Can the men take another step towards what they used to be? And how will the women follow up on a successful campaign? Read on…

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Hockey East Previews: UMass Lowell

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TIME TO GET HYPE FOR THE SEASON!

We’ll be cranking out these previews once a week with the occasional second one thrown in, as we want everything to be up by the time the puck drops. They’ll be done in reverse order of the men’s standings.

Today we look at the UMass Lowell River Hawks, a school that sponsors only men’s hockey and is coming off one of their worst years in the Bazin era. Can he right the ship? Read on…

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