Friday, March 7, 2014

Hockey East Round One: Notre Dame

With a four point weekend, the first of its kind this year, BU pulled themselves out of a potential last place finish in the league standings. As it is, this year is the worst finish for BU ever in Hockey East. Thankfully with Notre Dame joining the league this season, the playoff format was changed from the top 8 teams, to all 11 making the tournament.
From the Vault
BU celebrates Sean Escobeo's game winning goal with 1:07
left in the 2010 Icebreaker Championship game vs Notre Dame
in St. Louis. 

Obviously, in past years, BU would not have qualified for the league tournament. That is something that has never happened. 2004 was about as close as you could possibly imagine to not making it. BU needed a win in UNH (who finished 4th) on the last day of the season to finish 8th and just sneak in; otherwise they would have finished last and Merrimack would have taken the 8 seed. In that must win with UNH, the Terriers took a 2-0 lead before the 'Cats scored two of their own to tie things up in the third. The teams traded goals midway through period three and the game went to overtime tied 3-3. Almost halfway through the extra session, BU's David  Van der Gulik got off a shot from the circle, crashed the net and took about four whacks at the rebound before finally forcing the puck past Mike Ayers and into the goal sending BU to Hockey East Playoffs.

In the tournament, BU played number one seed Boston College and to everyone's surprise, won Game One 3-2 despite getting out shot 28-7. BC blanked BU 4-0 the next night, before BU pulled off one of, if not the biggest upsets in the HE tournament with a 4-2 win in Game Three. The Terriers advanced to the Garden to play Maine, where one last third period goal ended the 2004 BU hockey season. Sean Fields made 31 saves in the 1-0 loss, his last game as a Terrier.

So enough with the history lesson and onto this weekend....

Tomorrow BU will play league newcomer, Notre Dame in a one game playoff to advance to the quarterfinals, where (if all the higher seeds win out, except BU) , the Terriers will once again face Boston College. There are a lot of comparisons with 2004, hence why they have been brought up all year.

Two weeks ago, these two teams played in South Bend, seeing Notre Dame win a pair of 2-0 games. BU was plagued with some unfortunate travel struggles as their flight out to Indiana was re-routed and grounded twice before landing in South Bend.

Notre Dame is led offensively by TJ Tynan, who has 8 goals, 23 assists for 31 points in 34 games. Behind him is Mario Lucia (son of Minnesota head coach Don Lucia) who leads the team in goals with 15 and also has 13 assists for 28 points. WJC standout Vince Hinostroza also has 28 points with 7-21-28 line.

In goal, BU will again see Steven Summerhays. The senior from Anchorage, Alaska is the owner of an 18-11-2 record. In his time in goal, Summerhays has posted a .929 save percentage and a 1.87 goals against average, along with a stunning seven shutouts.

Unfortunately the game will not be on TV, but those interested can buy that game though the ND Athletics website.

I will not be able to make it out to Indiana because my high school team is still in the playoffs and I have a game on Sunday.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Post a Comment