Crimson staff writer
Christopher D. Wright
After a month-long pause for winter break, Harvard’s women’s ice hockey team returned to campus seeking to refocus and breathe new life into a season that has not gone it's way thus far. Although the Crimson’s results in the win column were up-and-down, its performance on the ice was remarkably improved.
To kick off the second half of the season, the Harvard women’s ice hockey team traveled across the river to MLB’s oldest active ballpark — Fenway Park — to face No. 4/3 Quinnipiac at Frozen Fenway 2023.
The Nov. 26 matchup between Harvard (3-7-2, 2-4-2 ECAC) and the University of New Hampshire (5-13-0, 4-10-0 WHEA) at Bright-Landry Hockey Center featured two teams hoping to correct course after a subpar start to the season. Entering the game, both teams had lost their previous three contests — but it was the hosts who snapped their streak. A second-period short-handed goal was the difference as the Crimson scored a much-needed 1-0 win over the Wildcats.
For Andrew Berry '09, the dream became reality as he was named the general manager of the Cleveland Browns in 2020. But before there was Andrew Berry, the football executive, there was Andrew Berry, the star Harvard defensive back, and before that, there was Andrew Berry, the football fan.
After an offseason that saw a lot of roster turnover and the integration of many fresh faces into its lineup, Harvard women’s ice hockey was challenged early in a four-game homestand to open its 2022-23 season. It faced the monumental task of developing team chemistry while simultaneously winning games against quality opponents. Ultimately, the first four games of the season underlined just how much work the Crimson still has to do, as it managed just one victory – a shutout of Dartmouth – while suffering three setbacks, at the hands of Quinnipiac, Yale, and Brown.
Following a historic 2021-22 campaign that featured the first Beanpot title and NCAA tournament berth since 2015, the No. 13/13 Harvard women’s ice hockey team begins the season in the midst of a transition. In addition to the new threads that the Crimson will wear this season, the team will feature many new faces when it kicks off its season at Bright-Landry Hockey Center on Oct. 15 versus Quinnipiac.
Harvard traveled to Ridder Arena, the site of its last NCAA tournament game in 2015, hoping to kick off a successful NCAA tournament run. Its tournament run started with a matchup versus a familiar foe, the University of Minnesota Duluth; the Crimson had already lost to the Bulldogs twice during the regular season and looked to change its fortune.
Both No. 6/6 Harvard (22-9-1, 16-5-1 ECAC) and Princeton (13-14-5, 9-10-3 ECAC) knew that a victory on Feb. 27 would be critical to their NCAA hopes. The Tigers took game one 4-2 after a third period surge. However, the Crimson would bounce back with a 2-1 overtime victory in the second game to force the decisive battle. Ultimately, Princeton rode to a 3-2 victory in Game 3.
The No. 6/6 Harvard women’s hockey team has already won the Ivy League championship and Beanpot title, but it entered its two final games hoping to add the ECAC regular season championship. Harvard would go on to claim a 3-0 win over Union (5-28-1, 2-20 ECAC), capturing the eighth ECAC regular season title in school history and the first since 2015.
After defeating Boston University 4-1 in the opener last Tuesday to reach the championship match, the No. 6/6 Crimson (18-6-0, 13-4-0 ECAC) came out guns blazing, and after a high octane, dramatic 60 minutes of play, inched past an inspired Boston College, 5-4, to win the game, and hence the championship.