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‘Cats preserve unbeaten streak with weekend sweep

In this weekend’s home-and-home series with Merrimack College, two of the UNH women’s hockey team stars came out ready to perform, and you may recognize who they were.

UNH defenseman Amy Schlagel and forward Jonna Curtis combined for a five-point, three-goal effort in a 5-2 win over its Hockey East rival on Friday at Lawler Rink. That success rolled into Saturday at the Whittemore Center as the ‘Cats completed the sweep of the Warriors 4-2. Schlagel had a personal best three-point outing in Friday’s win.

“[Schlagel] played really well,” Witt said. “She played within herself, she didn’t try to do too much. In doing that she ended up with a bunch of points. She did a good job.”

The Wildcats saw some offensive confidence on Friday, especially from Nicole Dunbar, who scored a crucial goal in Friday’s second period.

Dunbar scored for the second consecutive game to put UNH up 2-1, followed by another from Julia Fedeski to give the ‘Cats a two-goal lead in the period.

With the support of Curtis and Schlagel, UNH came out with the win and extended its unbeaten streak to a season-best three games (2-0-1).

On Saturday at the Whittemore Center, UNH played with similar confidence and determination. The ‘Cats saw a similar result as well, a 4-2 win which improves their unbeaten streak to four games. 

“I thought we were good today,” Witt said following Saturday’s win. “The first few minutes were a little slow, but then I thought we settled down. I was happy about that, thought we had a good weekend.”

While seemingly outplaying Merrimack for the entire first period, the ‘Cats found themselves down a goal early.

On a power play for hooking against Fedeski, Merrimack’s Paige Voight found the back of the net with a cluster of UNH and Merrimack skaters crowding Hillary Cashin’s view of the crease and put Merrimack up 1-0 at 11:01 in the first.

Down a goal, Haslett got the ‘Cats back in the game thanks to a shot that beat Merrimack’s Samantha Ridgewell glove-side high from the slot, knotting the game up at 1-1 at 11:36.

Only moments later, Haslett netted a grinding goal late in the period at 18:54 that proved to be the game-winning goal for UNH.

“My teammates made it easy,” Haslett said. “The first one was from a great pass from [Hannah Touzos]. Used the [defense] as a screen, and an awesome pass from Touzos, her first point.”

As they rushed the net, Haslett managed to corral the puck toward the crossbar and beat Ridgewell for the second time.

“Great team effort,” Haslett  said on the weekend performance. “It was awesome to get those four points. I think we were strong from the net out [Saturday].”

Dunbar, continuing her goal streak, along with Devan Taylor increased UNH’s lead to 4-1 which was enough to prevail over the Warriors for the victory. With UNH now holding a winning streak, chemistry is forming amongst the team.

“They’re all starting to believe in themselves,” Witt said on her team’s confidence. “They believe in each other, and that’s a big part of [the success].”

UNH will next play at Yale University on Dec. 10 at 6 p.m.

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