After the Christmas break, the NWHL returned with a flurry of goals- and a flurry of snow. The Buffalo Beauts leapfrogged Connecticut in the standings to claim 2nd place behind Boston in a 10 goal game. Meanwhile, the Riveters and Pride will to have to wait to face off against each other as their game was postponed due to poor weather conditions. Here is my summary of the night.
Buffalo Beauts 6 – 5 Connecticut Whale
Boston Pride @ New York Riveters POSTPONED
3rd Star – Megan Huertas (Connecticut Whale, 1G)
On her professional debut, Huertas took the opportunity to score her first NWHL goal seconds after Buffalo had made it 3-0, giving the Whale a crucial way to get back in the game. With her goal, she is now the only player to have a 100% shooting percentage.
2nd Star – Emily Janiga (Buffalo Beauts, 1G 1A)
The Buffalo forward assisted on Devon Skeats’ first period goal, but more crucially converted on the power play midway through the third. This turned out to be the game winning goal for the Beauts.
1st Star – Kourtney Kunichika (Buffalo Beauts, 2G 1A)
Kunichika recorded a three point night as she netted 2 goals and assisted on a third, bringing her point total up to 9 for the year. Both of her goals were go ahead goals, showing that she can produce the goods when the team most needs her to.
Devon Skeats who scored 2 goals, doubling her total for the year to 4.
Amanda Leveille, the 12th overall pick in the 2015 draft, claimed her third career win. This means that she has yet to register a loss during her professional career.
Meagan Mangene scored a shorthanded goal for the Whale, meaning that the team now has 3 shorthanded goals over the course of this season. Worryingly for them, they only have 3 power play goals as well.
Not So Honourable Mentions:
The weather in Newark means that the travelling Boston Pride will have to wait until the 15th, when they face the Whale to have a shot at making it twenty wins in a row. However, it does mean that it has now been over a year since the Boston Pride last lost a game in the NWHL.
The Whale goalies had a tough night. Starting goalie, Shenae Lundberg let in 2 goals on 4 shots meaning that she was replaced after 11 minutes into the game. Her replacement, Nicole Stock, did better, but still conceded 4 goals on 16 shots which gave them a joint save percentage of just 0.700%.
The teams will be back at it next weekend as we enter the second half of the season. The Beauts will host the Rivs on the 14th while the Whale will be looking to reclaim second place as they face the Pride.