Saturday, March 10, 2012

We Shall Remain

This afternoon, BU stayed alive in the Hockey East tournament by defeating UNH 4-2 in a must-win Game Two. The Terriers staved off elimination and forced a decisive Game Three tomorrow afternoon ant Agganis Arena.

BU got on the board first midway through the opening period. Just as a BU power play had expired, Chris Connolly shoved the puck over the goal line at the 11:55 mark. Alex Chiasson's shot was stopped by UNH goalie Casey DeSmith, but DeSimth did not completely stop the puck and it crept towards the goal line, before Connolly poked it fully over the line and into the back of the net. It was Connolly's 9th goal of the season.

Prior to the goal, Kieran Millan made some incredible stops. One that sticks out in my mined is a glove save in which the goaltender was lying on his stomach and just threw up his glove and somehow made the save. UNH really controlled the pace of play in the first, despite getting out shot 14-8. The Terriers looked very slow out of the gate, passes were not crisp and the only thing keeping them in the game was Millan.
Ryan Santana trys to get the puck from
Damon Kipp in the third period
(Photo by Matt Dresens)

The second period was better, but UNH did managed to tie the game 1-1 midway though the period. Stevie Moses beat Millan upstairs at the 10:16 marker. The assists went to Kevin Goumas and Damon Kipp.

BU again was playing sloppy, but like last night, the Terriers scored a break a way goal in the season period. Patrick MacGregor got the puck to Sahir Gill in the neutral zone. Gill won a foot race for the puck, but then was tripped by Eric Knodel. While falling down, Gill swatted at the puck and in the process got it behind DeSmith and into the net. Knodel was called for holding, and the Terriers went on the power play following the goal. The goal was reviewed for great deal of time and I still really don't know why. The puck clearly hit Gill's stick and clearly went in the net. Nevertheless, it was Gill's 12 goal of the year.

BU took the 2-1 lead into the third period, but it did not hold up. Conner Hardowa scored on the power play, less than five minutes into the third from Goumas and Brett Kostolansky. It was just Hardowa's sixth goal of the year.

Less than a minute later, Matt Nieto scored on an absolutely perfectly placed wrist shot. From beyond the top of the near circle, the sophomore out of Long Beach California hit the inside of the cross-bar causing the puck to go straight down and into the goal. The common hockey phrase is called "going bar down" for obvious reasons. DeSmith did little to try and stop the shot, as it whizzed by him and into the goal

Less than five minutes later, Ryan Santana capped off a two on none rush with Sahir Gill. Gill received the puck at the attacking blue line from Adam Clendening and used his speed to get behind a UNH defenseman. Santana was already cutting to the net and Gill hit him with a tape to tape pass. All Santana had to do was guide the pass into the back of the net. DeSmith had no chance.

The lead would hold up, as Millan continued to play well and the Terriers played solid defense to kill the reaming time off the clock. So, BU won the second game, forcing Game Three, which will be played at 5:00pm tomorrow at Agganis. The winner goes to the Boston Garden for the Hockey East semifinals.

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