The women’s hockey team at Northeastern has already checked off one item on its to-do list in 2019, beating defending national champion Clarkson University in a historic matchup in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Now the Huskies have set their sights on a bigger target: A national championship.
“I’ve told them since day one, they can beat anybody out there in the NCAA,” head coach Dave Flint said.
The Huskies, who are ranked third in the nation, have won five games against teams ranked in the top 10 this season, lost just once on home ice, and outscored opponents by 35 goals in 21 games.
Northeastern beat Clarkson 3-1 on Jan. 6 in the second game of a two-game series played in Belfast, which marked the first-ever NCAA Division 1 women’s hockey games played outside North America. The squads tied, 1-1, in the first game.
Assistant captain Kasidy Anderson said that beating Clarkson felt good, but didn’t mean more than other victories. “We treat every team the same,” said Anderson, who scored two goals in the 3-1 victory over Clarkson. “Our coach reminds us every day that anybody can beat us, and we need to approach every game with consistency.”
The Huskies won the Hockey East title in 2018 and reached the NCAA tournament for the second time in program history. They believe they can go even further this season and have adopted a win-now attitude.
Fourteen players have scored at least one goal for the Huskies, which rank seventh in the nation with 3.57 goals per game. And goaltenders Aerin Frankel and Brittany Bugalski have limited opponents to 1.88 goals per game.
“We don’t care who is scoring, who is getting assists, we just want it to happen, and I think that has allowed us to be successful,” Anderson said. “We wanted to make this team an unbreakable team. We wanted to be the team that could genuinely fight for each other, no matter what it takes.”
The Huskies split a two-game series against No. 10 Boston College over the weekend and have 12 regular season games remaining before the Hockey East Tournament begins on March 1. They will battle Connecticut Friday night at Matthews Arena.
“Every year the goal is to be national champions,” Anderson said. “But this year we can actually look at it and truly see ourselves holding up that trophy at the end of the season.”