HAMDEN, Conn. – With five weekend points already and 11 for the season, Quinnipiac women's ice hockey junior forward Kelly Babstock (Mississauga, Ontario) notched another three points (one goal, two assists) leading the Bobcats past Maine on Saturday, 5-2. Coming into Saturday as the nation's leader in points-per-game average, Babstock kept hold of the top spot as she tallied a pair of assists early and put in an empty-net goal late to seal the Bobcat's second win of the season (2-1-1) and sweep the series against the Black Bears (0-2-0).
Sophomore goalie Chelsea Laden (Lakeville, Minn.) denied 19 Black Bear shots on the way to her first victory of the season (1-1-0). The steady Bobcat defense limited the Maine offense to just three goals in two games played and dominated in scoring chances as they posted a 76-30 advantage in shots-on-goal for the weekend.
Another program-record was extended Saturday afternoon as sophomore forward Nicole Kosta (Mississauga, Ontario) recorded two assists, her 9th and 10th of the season, to extend her program-record point-scoring streak to 11 games dating back to the 2011-12 season. Her 10 assists place her three-way tie for first place among Division I skaters. Kosta is tied with Minnesota's Amanda Kessel and Mercyhurst's Christine Bestland but the Quinnipiac forward has compiled her 10 assists in two fewer games than her counterparts.
The Bobcat offense though centered around the unrelenting play of Babstock. After her program record four goals in Friday's 6-1 victory, she followed with her third three-point outing of the season as she has scored at least three points in every game this season for Quinnipiac.
Maine was able to strike first in the opening period as forward Brittany Dougherty skated with the puck end-line-to-end-line, around a couple Bobcat defenders and put a shot on Laden. The first shot was denied but Jennifer More put in the rebound for a 1-0 Black Bear lead at the 12:57 mark of the first period.
Quinnipiac responded at the 18:39 mark in the first with an excellent one-on-one move from junior forward Erica Uden Johansson (Sundsvall, Sweden). Kosta sent the puck off the boards near center ice to Babstock across the Maine defensive blue line. She corralled the puck and centered to Uden Johansson who touched the puck to herself that beat the lone defender. She skated in on Black Bear goalie Meghann Treacy, faked a forehand wrist shot, and her backhander found the back of the net for her first goal of the season.
The Bobcats would take command in the second with a pair of goals. The first coming off a broken play behind the Maine net where freshman forward Nicole Connery (Newmarket, Ontario) was left with the puck. She attempted a centering pass that deflected off the back of Treacy's pad and across the line for her first career goal.
Quinnipiac's vaunted power-play (33.3%, 8-for-24, tied for 4th in the nation) struck in the second period as the puck was worked around the far side of the ice from Kosta to Babstock above the faceoff circle. She found senior forward Breann Frykas (East St. Paul, Manitoba) cutting towards the net who one-timed home the eventual game-winner. It was Frykas's first goal of the season, Babstock's second assist of the day (sixth on the year) and Kosta's 10th of the year.
Senior forward Brittany Lyons (Canton, Mass.) would factor in the scoring with her second goal of the season. On another Quinnipiac power-play, freshmen Kristen Tamberg (North Toronto, Ontario) and Nicole Brown (Oshawa, Ontario) worked it back-and-forth at the point before Brown took a shot. Her shot was heading wide but deflected off the stick of Lyons and past Treacy for a 4-1 Bobcat advantage. Brown recorded an assist for the second straight game while the assist was the first in Tamberg's career.
The Black Bears closed the deficit to 4-2 with a goal from Tori Pasquariello who scored after Jessica Hall punched in a backhand wrist shot on Laden. The rebound in front was poked at and eventually beat Laden underneath the pads.
As the physical play picked up towards the end of the third period, Maine committed 10 penalties on the afternoon compared to Quinnpiac's five, Babstock closed the door on the Bobcat victory. Just seconds after leaving the penalty box and with Treacy pulled for a Maine empty-net, senior defenseman Regan Boulton (Brandon, Manitoba) sent the puck off the boards to a streaking Babstock up-ice. She would skate in uncontested and net the goal for her eighth of the season. Boulton's assist is her fourth on the year.
The Bobcats will look to extend their two-game winning streak over the weekend as they will take part in their first road contests of the season against Syracuse on Oct. 19-20.