I say 59 minutes because off the opening face-off, BU controlled the puck and 45 seconds into the game, took a 1-0 lead. Evan Rodrigues and Wade Megan broke into the UNH zone on a two on one. Rodrigues carried the puck in the near circle before dishing to Megan at the bottom of the slot. Megan one touched the bouncing pass from Rodrigues between Casey DeSmith's legs and into the net. It was Megan's first goal of the season.
From then on, it was all down hill. UNH nearly tied the game just a few minutes later. A knuckling shot from the blue line on an odd man rush seemed to fool Freshman goalie Sean Maguire, who struggled all night. The shot rang the bottom of the left post after getting through Maguire's out stretched left leg.
New Hampshire then did indeed tie the game at the 8:52 maker of period one. John Henrion used Terrier defenseman Garrett Noonan as a screen. Maguire got most of Henrion's low wrister, but it had enough on it to get over the goal line and light the lamp. At this point I witnessed "The Fish" for the first time.
|John Henrion raises his armes after scoring UNH's first goal.|
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
At UNH home games, some hick throws a large fish onto the ice after the Wildcats score their first goal of the game. Overall, I wasn't that impressed.
12 seconds later, Nick Sorkin potted the eventual game winning goal. A shot from outside either hit someone in front of the net, or Maguire got a piece of it. Nevertheless, the ensuing rebound found the tape of Sorkin who rammed home his second goal of the season.
BU and Maguire escaped the remainder of the period only down 2-1.
UNH upped their lead to 3-1 just a minute and a half into the second. Unlike BU's power play in the first period, UNH struck on their first man advantage in convincing fashion. It only took one second. The teams were skating 4 on 4 and literally the second UNH went a man up, Eric Knodel ripped a wrist shot past Maguire's glove into the top corner.
Maguire's struggles continued, allowing Scott Pavelski to score a rather weak goal at the 6:42 mark of the second, making it 4-1. Minutes later, Maguire's forgettable collegiate debut was over, as fellow Freshman Matt O'Conner steeped in. O'Conner looked much more confident, stoping all 15 shots he faced.
BU put together a few good chances in the third, but DeSmith came up with all the stops. UNH hit four posts in the game and the score does not really indicate how one sided this game was. Yes, BU generated some shots, but not too many grade A scoring chances. All in all, the game falls in Maguire, who was clearly a little rattled in his first collegiate game, but not all the blame goes on the young goalie. The all around effort and lack of cohesiveness, that, along with the goaltending, will get much stronger as the year goes on led to the Terriers demise in this one.
Ice conditions were also a major factor in the game for both teams. Throughout the game, large puddles and soft spots appeared on the ice. Players on both teams had a tough time simply making crisp passes and carrying the puck. Sometime even players would just fall down out of nowhere. It didn't help that it was about 100 degrees inside the Whittemore Center.