With Bullock Enjoying Milestone Senior Weekend, PU Women’s Hockey Gets Sweep, Girds for Playoffs
BULLY FOR HER: Princeton University women’s hockey player Carly Bullock tracks the puck in recent action. Bullock enjoyed a milestone Senior Weekend as Princeton posted 5-1 wins over Brown on Friday and Yale a day later. Star forward Bullock tallied three goals and an assist against the Bears and then had two goals and an assist in the win over the Bulldogs, hitting the 150-point mark in her career in the process. The Tigers, now 22-5-1 overall and 17-4-1 ECAC Hockey, start action in the ECACH quarterfinals where they are seeded second and will host seventh-seeded Quinnipiac (18-13-3 overall,11-9-2 ECACH) in a best-of-three series starting on February 28. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)
By Bill Alden
Carly Bullock wanted to put on a show for her family as the Princeton University women’s hockey team held its annual Senior Day celebration last weekend.
“My siblings are here, they didn’t get to come out a lot,” said senior forward Bullock, a native of Eden Prairie, Minn. “I have always wanted to do my best when everyone is watching.”
Bullock came through with one of the best weekends of her career, tallying three goals and an assist as Princeton defeated Brown 5-1 on Friday night and then chipping in two goals and an assist as the Tigers defeated Yale 5-1 a day later.
“At the end of the season, every game matters and every team is coming out and bringing their all,” said Bullock, who hit the 150-point mark (91 goals, 59 assists) in her Princeton career with her final goal against Yale, becoming the ninth player in program history to achieve that milestone.
“We had a bit of a slow start against Brown, so to be able to get some goals in the second and third period and make it a statement game shows we are ready for the postseason. Today, we wanted to come out fast. We did that and we didn’t let up, so I think overall it was a great weekend.”
Bullock was a bit surprised upon learning that she had joined the 150-point club.
“I didn’t know I was that close, that was really exciting to hear,” said Bullock, who now has 26 goals and 19 assists this season and was later named the ECAC Hockey Player of the Week.
“It has been a great year. We are not done yet. Hitting those milestones this season has been really special for me and to have my family here was really special.”
The Tigers, now 22-5-1 overall and 17-4-1 ECACH, will be looking for a special postseason run, starting with the ECACH quarterfinals where they are seeded second and will host seventh-seeded Quinnipiac (18-13-3 overall,11-9-2 ECACH) in a best-of-three series beginning on February 28.
Bullock and her classmates are looking to keep playing together for as long as they can.
“These are my best friends,” said Bullock, whose classmates on the team include Claire Thompson, Steph Neatby, Sylvie Wallin, and Mackenzie Ebel.
“To be playing with them and playing for them is definitely a motivator. We just want to keep going and go as far as we can.”
Serving as an assistant captain for the Tigers this winter, Bullock has focused on motivating her teammates.
“Cara [Princeton Head Coach Cara Morey] told me before the season, once you are a leader and you have a letter, you can’t take any days off,” said Bullock.
“I have early been trying to focus on that by working harder in practice and having a better attitude. People are watching what you are doing and how you are reacting to situations. It has been a factor in the season and it has been really good.”
As the Tigers face Quinnipiac, they will need to produce a constant work rate.
“One of the biggest things is playing the full 60 minutes. It has kind of been that we either take the first period off or we take the end off,” said Bullock.
“It is definitely been a thing we have been struggling with this season. I think today we really played a full 60-minute game and the score shows it. That is something that we need to continue to focus on going into playoffs because no team is going to be taking a period off.”
With Princeton currently ranked sixth nationally, Bullock believes the team can end up in the NCAA Frozen Four.
“Tonight we tied the program’s all-time wins record in a season,” said Bullock. “With our rankings throughout the whole year, we have been showing that we are one of the best teams in the nation. I think we can go all the way.”
No matter how far Princeton goes this winter, Bullock has come a long way in the last four years.
“I think a big one is going to be winning Ivies last year, that was really special,” said Bullock, reflecting on some of her career highlights.
“I will never forget when we won the series my freshman year against Quinnipiac. We went into double OT and ended up losing the first game and then came back. That was the first playoff series we had won in a while. To think how far our program has come and how much better we have gotten in the four years that I have been here is definitely really special. We can make this year even better.”