Led by talented freshman forward Hannah Bilka, the seventh-ranked Boston College women’s hockey team picked up a seemingly easy win on Thursday night, defeating Holy Cross 6-0. Bilka was the offensive focal point for the Eagles, tallying four goals to help the Eagles improve to 3-0.
The Eagles opened the scoring 15 minutes into the game, with Bilka controlling a loose puck after Olivia Finocchiaro forced a turnover. The freshman then looped around the back of the net before lofting a shot over the shoulder pad of Holy Cross goalie Jada Brenon.
However, the Boston College attack would erupt in the second period, quickly putting the contest out of reach. Bilka asserted herself throughout the period, adding her final three goals to help the Eagles take a 5-0 lead into the final frame.
Boston College’s dominance carried over to the power play as well. Despite having seven opportunities, the Crusaders were unable to get on the board.
In fact, the Eagles continued to attack the net despite playing on the man disadvantage, adding two short-handed goals in quick succession early in the second period. The first came off of a wrist shot by Delaney Belinskas, while the second sealed a hat-trick for Bilka, who fired a shot between Brenon’s legs after receiving a pass from fellow freshman Kelly Browne.
Bilka’s goal forced a change in net for the Crusaders, who turned to Julia Pelletier after going down 4-0. While Pelletier performed admirably given the circumstances, Bilka and Finocchiaro each tallied another goal to seal a 6-0 Boston College win.
The victory was a reminder that the Eagles have the talent to both stifle opponents defensively and score at will. Goalie Maddy McArthur picked up her second shutout victory in three games, aided by a suffocating defensive unit which allowed just 15 shots, compared to the Eagles’ 39.
BC, now 3-0 both overall and in conference play, looks to be true contenders in the talented Hockey East, which includes two other top-10 opponents including fourth-ranked Northeastern and eighth-ranked Boston University.
BC now faces a quick turnaround, traveling to Syracuse on Saturday in the hopes of improving to 4-0. The Crusaders, on the other hand, are still searching for their first win after dropping to 0-2-2 on the season.
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