Wisconsin 1, Boston College 0: Badgers advance to women’s hockey final – Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
ST. CHARLES, Mo. – The No. 1 Wisconsin women’s hockey team advanced to the NCAA national championship game with a 1-0 win over No. 4 Boston College on Friday evening.
Wisconsin defender Mellissa Channell scored from the point with just 16.2 seconds left in the game to help the Badgers advance to their seventh title game. The Badgers have won four championships, most recently in 2011.
Boston College came out firing early, peppering Wisconsin goalie Ann-Renée Desbiens with 11 shots in the first 11 minutes of the game while the Badgers were able to muster just one.
The Badgers controlled the offensive game from there, outshooting BC by a 36-22 margin for the game, including 31-10 over the final two periods. The final shot ended up being the only one that mattered.
BOX SCORE: UW 1, BC 0
Wisconsin (33-2-4) had lost in the national semifinal in each of the past three seasons, so advancing to the championship game was a goal of the senior class all year.
Channell is not a traditional scorer for the Badgers, who have been known for their depth on offense all season. She entered with just two goals all season and 10 in her four years. As the game wound down, Wisconsin was looking for opportunities anywhere it could find them.
“I don’t score much,” Channell said. “Annie (Pankowski) passed it back to me and I just took a shot. I wasn’t really aiming, I was just trying to hit the net and create a rebound or something, but it hit the perfect corner so I guess it was a lucky shot.”
The senior leadership and the experience of having played — and lost — this game before helped the Badgers stay calm as the game progressed.
Coach Mark Johnson admitted it took his team a bit of time in the first period to settle down and catch up to the speed of play. The Badgers weathered that early test and from there, he said, it was just a matter of putting pressure on the puck until something good happened.
“You just had the sense that we were moving pretty well and creating opportunities and waiting for the golden opportunities, and fortunately for us Mellissa’s shot found the back of the net,” said Johnson.
Desbiens, a two-time Patty Kazmaier top-three finalist and two-time All-American, recorded her NCAA-leading 17th shutout and extended her career record to 55.
Wisconsin will face the winner of the second semi-final at 2 p.m. Sunday. The title game will air live on the Big Ten Network.