Monday, November 30, 2015

Weekend Lookback: No Quit

Player of the Week
AJ Greer, 1 goal, 1 assist.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Three third period goals powered two Terrier comebacks in the third period at Madison Square Garden, Saturday night to once again deny Cornell their first win in the Red Hot Hockey series. Bobo Carpenter, AJ Greer and Jordan Greenway all scored in the final 15 minutes. Greer and Greenway both scored their first first goals of the season in the game.

Line Shuffle Provides Spark
Going into Saturday night's tilt, coach Quinn shuffled up the "bottom two lines". The third line had been for the last few games Bobo Carpenter, Robbie Baillargeon and AJ Greer. Saturday night, Quinn healthy scratched Chase Phelps (a fourth line regular) and placed Nick Olsson back on the third line, a line he played well on for stretches last year. Olsson had been out of the two Michigan games and the Bentley game with an upper body injury he suffered back in the weekend series with Providence. Baillargeon was demoted to the fourth line, while Greer and Carpenter remained on the third line.

The moved had to have stemmed from what took place in the Bentley game. Tommy Kelley and Mike Moran both played a strong game vs the Falcons and created a few scoring chances. So the lines going into MSG looked as follows:

AJ Greer - Bobo Carpenter - Nick Olsson
Tommy Kelley - Mike Moran - Robbie Baillargeon

The shake up more than ruffled a few feathers, it produced points. Greer and Carpenter both scored and Olsson had an assist on both of their goals.

No Quit
BU has trailed entering the third period this year seven times and has come away with at least a tie in five of those games. They have won two of them. The Terriers were behind Providence, Michigan and Cornell 2-0 after two and did not lose any those games. BU is once again a third period team and that's not necessarily the worst thing, but production in the first two periods needs to pick up for this team to do some real damage.

The Terriers have a -3 and -4 scoring diferencial in the first two periods of games this season. In the third period and in overtime, they are +13. Last year, they were +5 and +13 in the first two periods, respectively. They were a ridiculous +45 in OT and the third frame.

At The Polls 
This is getting a little repetitive, but Providence was once again the nation's number one ranked team. BC was two, 13-0-2 Quinnipiac (how they are not number one, I don't know... polls are dumb) was once again three. North Dakota leapfrogged Lowell to move into 4th and the River Hawks took 5th. BU was 11, again.

It's late November and far to early to look at the PairWise, but here as a quick peak: BU is 17th and I will say no more than that this early.

Around Hockey East
Friday: Lowell took out Northeastern in overtime of the semi finals of the Bellpot in Belfast, Ireland... Maine won their third straight game with a 5-3 win over Princeton at home... UMass lost 4-1 at the Mullins Center to undefeated Quinnipiac... Harvard rolled Notre Dame in the semis of the Shillelagh tournament in South Bend, 4-1.

Saturday: Boston College downed RIT at Conte 6-2... Qunnipiac finished off the sweep of UMass with a 1-0 win... NU trounced Colgate 7-1 in the Bellpot consolation game... Union shutout Merrimack at Lawler 4-0... Maine swept Princeton with a 3-2 overtime win... New Hampshire one upped Bentley 5-4 at the Whitt... Lowell and Brown tied 5-5 in the Bellpot Final, Lowell won the shootout... Notre
Dame beat Western Michigan in the consolation game of the Shillelagh tourney 3-1... BU came back to tie Cornell at MSG, 3-3.

Sunday: Penn State blanked Vermont 4-0 in Philadelphia.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Another Thriller

Red Hot Hockey never seems to disappoint. The games are always close and action filled with a spirited crowed and two competitive teams. Tonight was no different. BU clawed their way out of an 0-2 hole entering the third period and then fought back again late in the period to retie things 3-3.

After a scoreless first period that saw both teams generate a number of chances, Cornell took the lead just 2:16 into the second frame on the power play. Anthony Angello redirected a shot from up top over Connor LaCouvee (22 saves) and in for his team leading fifth goal of the season.

The Big Red extended their lead a few minutes later on a total Terrier breakdown. Doyle Somerby went to step-up on Teemu Tiitinen at his own blue line, but Tiitinen got around him and was in alone. His shot missed wide to LaCouvee's blocker side and kicked off end boards right back to the goalie. LaCouvee then had the puck jared loose from his possession at the side of the net. The puck pinballed around before Trevor Yates roofed a shot over LaCouvee, who was all sprawled out.

The Terriers had no finish in the first two periods. Danny O'Regan was denied by the post on a grade-A chance off a Brandon Fortunato rebound. Bobo Carpenter also sent a shot that cleanly beat CU goalie Mitch Gillam off the crossbar in the first period. Gillam made some big saves to stymie the Terriers early and really played well all night, making 40 saves, including 6 in overtime.

Carpenter did capitalize later and got BU on the board 5:36 into the third. Nick Olsson, AJ Greer and Carpenter lead a three on two rush out of the BU zone. Olsson gave way to Greer, before AJ fed to Carpenter from the slot to the far side. Carpenter got just enough on his shot to muscle it past Gillam and put BU back in the game.

That line was not done, though. Less than two minutes later Olsson found Greer in the low circle on the far side, near the dot. From there, Greer wristed home his first of the year over the right shoulder of Gillam.

BU almost took the lead just a bit later on a crazy bank shot from center ice. Ahti Oksanen sent in a long wrister from basically the red line that caromed off the kick plate and got behind Gillam, who almost kicked it back in his own net.

Cornell settled down and regained the lead with 8:58 left on a Holden Anderson tip in goal. Patrick McCarron sent a low wrister toward the Terrier goal from the point and Anderson redirected it through LaCouvee's legs and in for just his second of the season.

The Terriers were not done, though. Jordan Greenway jammed home his first collegiate goal with just 3:55 left to retie the game. I really didn't get a good look at how the whole play developed, I just kinda went crazy when the red light came on. Anyway, Matt Lane and Ryan Cloonan picked up the assists.

The game went 3-3 to overtime, where BU completely controlled the play thanks in large part to a Chris Hillbrich boarding penalty 1:03 into the extra session. BU had a complete set up for the power play, but nothing got past Gillam and the the game ended in a 3-3 draw.

There was, however, a shootout to see who would take home the Kelley-Harkness trophy.

Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson was stopped on his attempted to open the shootout. LaCouvee made a save on his first shot faced before five straight goals were scored.

Danny O'Regan scored on a nice backhand shot and then Jeff Kubiak shelffed one home. Oksanen regained the lead before Tiitinen tied things up again. Matt Lane scored to give BU a 3-2 lead in round four and LaCouvee made a save to close out the shootout and give BU the trophy once again. 

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Red Hot Hockey Round 5

Tonight it's BU and Cornell at Madison Square Garden for the fifth round of Red Hot Hockey. The Terriers are undefeated (3-0-1) in the RHH series dating back to 2007.

Cornell comes into this game with a 6-1-1 record and currently sit at 10th in the PairWise rankings. The Big Red began the season with home and home sweep of Niagara before dropping Princeton the following weekend. Cornell then battled to a 5-4 overtime loss at home to undefeated Quinnipiac. Since the loss, CU has swept Colgate, beat Brown 1-0 and a tied Yale 0-0. Cornell is winless against ranked teams at 0-1-1.

Scouting The Big Red
Jeff Kubiak leads the team in overall points at nine. In eight games played, the junior from Tinley Park, Illinois has 3 goals and 6 assists. The leading goal scorer on the team is freshman Anthony Angello, who in eight games has found the back of the net 4 times.

In goal Mitch Gillam is the only goalie to take the crease this year for Cornell. He is 6-1-1 with a 1.59 goals against and a .938 save percentage. Gillam is currently riding a two game shutout streak that dates back to November 14 vs Colgate. He allowed a 5 on 3 goal at the 17:29 marker of the second period and then blanked Yale and Brown back to back. So, that's 143:31 of games time since he he last allowed a goal.

Wait I've heard this story before... Going into the 2011 RHH game, Cornell goalie Andy Iles had a three game shutout streak coming into the Garden.

Red Hot Hockey Recap
It was said before but it's always fun to repeat it, BU is undefeated in the four previous Red Hot Hockey games.

2007 saw BU run away with the game, winning by a lopsided 6-3 score. They got goals from Luke Popko, Joe Pereira, Brandon Yip, Peter McArthur, Colin Wilson and Boomer Ewing.

Both the 2009 and 2011 games needed overtime. BU fell behind in '09 2-0 early, but battled back and tied the game by pulling goalie Kieran Millian and playing 6 on 3. Chris Connolly forced home a rebound with :51 seconds left to tie the game 3-3.

In 2011, it was Cornell that fought back from an 0-2 hole to force overtime. That's where Ross Gaudet tipped home the game winner off a Max Nicastro shot from the point.

The last time the two teams played was 2013. BU jumped out to a 3-0 lead behind goals from Mike Moran, Robbie Baillargeon and Nick Roberto. Cornell scored twice in the third, but BU hung on to win 3-2 despite only taking 11 shots. Matt O'Connor made 37 saves.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Weekend Lookback: Ups and Downs

This weekend was a lot like the previous one: fall behind early and come back late. It worked Friday night as BU stormed back for three goals to overcome a 2-0 deficit to Michigan, but that was not the case Saturday. BU played an uninspired game vs the Wolverines and Michigan really dictated the play .
Player of the Week: Doyle Somerby
2 goals, game winning goal on Friday night.
(Photo by Matt Dresens) 
In fact, Michigan really had their way with BU for the whole series other than the last 10 minutes of Friday's game. The penalty kill was a real issue in the two Michigan games. UM scored three of their six goals on the power play. Connor LaCouvee did stop a penalty shot late in the third on a rather weak attempt by Tyler Motte, Friday night.

The penalty kill hasn't been great all year. They are currently killing at just 81%, good for 33rd best in the country. For comparative's sake, Princeton has the nation's best PK at 95%.

In the Bentley game, the penalty kill was perfect. They were only tested once, but it was an extended 5 on 3. BU limited the Falcons to mostly parameter shots and not a lot of second chance opportunities. I'm not going to put a lot of stock in the Bentley game, because BU was clearly a better team. It was nice to see them come out an dominate the game, though. We have all seen the other side of games like this, i.e the Dartmouth game last year and the loss to Holy Cross and Bentley a few years back.  

Coach Quinn added that the Bentley game "was a really good win for us and we played with passion and pace. I'm really proud of our guys for bouncing back."

Somerby Coming into his own
Doyle Somerby continued to be a force this weekend. He scored twice, including the eventual game winner on Friday night, but was also strong defensively. "Doyle's had a great year so far. He continues to improve, he's been a big part of our success," added Quinn.

Both of his goals on the weekend came from point shots that found their way through traffic out in front. Friday night's goal deflected off a Michigan stick in the slot and last night vs Bentley, Jordan Greenway supplied a blinding screen. That traffic out front has not been over looked by Somerby and said last night that "it's a testament to how we are playing as a team, props to the guys out front."

At The Polls
Providence was once again the nation's number one team, getting 36 of a possible 50 first place votes. Boston College was second. Quinnipiac, who is still undefeated at 11-0-2 was once again third. Lowell hopped over North Dakota for fourth and the newly named Fighting Hawks of North Dakota took fifth. BU slipped down a slot from 10 to 11.

Around Hockey East
Friday: Providence cruised past Northeastern 5-2 at home... UMass and New Hampshire skated to a 2-2 draw at the Whitt... Lowell and Notre Dame also tied 2-2 at Tsongas Center... Maine picked up their first win of the season, 3-2 at home vs Vermont... BU came back from 0-2 down to drop Michigan 3-2 at home.

Saturday: Maine finished off the sweep of UVM with a 4-1 win... Lowell took down Notre Dame 3-1... BC doubled up UNH 6-3 in Durham... Merrimack and UMass tied 1-1 at Lawler... Providence shutout NU at Matthews 3-0... Michigan avoided the sweep at BU with a 4-2 win.

Tuesday: BC torched UConn 5-1 in Hartford... UNH lost at RPI 4-3... BU blanked Bentley at Agganis 3-0.  

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

BU, Maguire Shutdown and Shutout Bentley

Tonight was not even a contest. BU dominated Bentley from start to finish in all aspects of the game. They outshot the Falcons 47-15 and Danny O'Regan put them in the lead just 3:01 into the game. Ahti Oksanen sprung O'Regan in alone on a high lofted flip pass from deep in his own end. The puck landed at Danny's feet near the blue line. He then skated in wide before cutting to the middle and shelfing a backhanded shot from in tight over a sprawled out Gabe Antoni, who made 44 saves.
Tommy Kelley goes hard to a rebound off a Mike Moran (not
pictured) shot in the first period. It was one of many strong shifts 
for the fourth line, tonight.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Bentley struggled making breakout passes and that led to several BU chances. Both teams were relatively sloppy, though. At times it looked like the two teams were playing with a hot potato out there. No one could possess the puck and passes on both sides were not sharp.

The sloppiness led to a one-on-three shot for Robbie Baillargeon that slipped through Antoni and dribbled off the far post in the closing seconds of the period. BU dominated the period shots-wise, posting 15 to Bentley's 3.

Bentley got the first real chance of the second frame on a two-on-one bid by Andrew McDonald. He redirected a centering pass from Max French just wide of Sean Maguire and then barreled into Sean Maguire after the play. There was no call (and there should't have been one), but he did take off Maguire's mask.

The Terriers' fourth line created some serious havoc in the second period. Although neither Tommy Kelley, Mike Moran nor Chase Phelps scored, their play did lead directly to a goal. Moran tipped a Brandon Hickey shot right on goal and continued to drive the net. In the process, he drew a crosschecking call. BU scored on the ensuing man advantage.

Ryan Cloonan worked the puck up to Brandon Hickey at the far point and from there, Hickey dished over to Doyle Somerby on the near point. Somerby let go a wrister that found its way though a crowd in front of Antoni. He never saw the shot. It beat him blocker side and the goal was Somerby's third of the season.

Coach Quinn added this about the fourth line: "they all played well, all three guys were impact full. Moran seemed to have a nose for the net." Moran did have a team high six shots on goal.

Bentley again only managed three shots in the period. They had no extended zone time whatsoever in the first two periods. All of their chances were one and done.

BU wasted no time in the third in distancing themselves from the Falcons. Danny O'Regan slid a nifty pass through a defender's legs just inside the Bentley blue line over to Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson in the far side circle. JFK torched Antoni high glove for his fourth of the year.

The Falcons had an extended 5 on 3 chance midway though the third, but sent all their setup shots off the glass. Maguire did make a ridiculous sprawling save prior to the power play on a backdoor chance to deny Alexey Solovyev.

Sean Maguire stopped all 15 shots he faced and picked up the first shutout for a BU goalie on the year.

BU will head to New York City for the fifth installment of Red Hot Hockey on Saturday night vs Cornell.

Happy Thanksgiving to all.

Bentley Preview

Tonight, BU faces Bentley in their last home game of the month, a month that has only seen the Terriers lose once.

Bentley is 5-4-1 on the year and actually did sweep Northeastern in the second weekend of the season in a home an home series. Just this past weekend, the Falcons fell to RPI at home 3-2. Bentley is 3-2-1 in Atlantic Hockey action with wins over Army and a sweep at RIT.

Scouting The Falcons
Bentley is lead by Max French, who has 7 goals and 4 assists in just six games played. Kyle Schmidt also has 11 points on the year, but he has played in all ten of Bentley's games.

In goal, Jason Argue has seen action in seven games thus far. He is 3-2-1 with a 2.38 goals against and a .941 save percentage.

Common Opponents:
BU 5, NU 4 (November 6)
BU 4, @ NU 1 (November 7)
Bentley 3, @ NU 2 (October 16)
Bentley 4, NU 1 (October 17)

BU 3, @ MC 4 (October 30)
Bentley 1, @ MC 5 (November 4)

BU Notes
Would not be surprised to see Sean Maguire in goal tonight. Connor LaCouvee has played the last eight games and is coming off back to back starts from last weekend. Nothing is official yet, though.

I will be in the press box tonight with full updates.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Michigan Rolls In Game Two

Tonight, BU played one of, if not their worst game of the year. They managed just 11 shots in the first two periods and were thoroughly out played pretty much the entire game except for a small stint in the second period following Matt Lane's goal.
Connor LaCouvee sticks aside a shot in the second period. One
of 43 saves he made on the afternoon.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Michigan's defense was relentless and they played very well with the lead, a lead that got early in the first period, once again.

Cooper Marody scored his second power play goal of the weekend just 3:50 into the game. Not five minutes later, it was 2-0 Wolverines. Brendan Warren picked up his third goal of the year from Tony Calderone and Nolan De Jong at 8:08 of the first.

UM notched yet another power play goal at the 17:07 mark. Alex Kile slammed home a rebound off a Tyler Motte shot from in tight. It was his second goal of the weekend and fourth on the year.

BU got back in the game late in the second period on a Matt Lane goal, as mentioned before. Connor LaCouvee kicked out a Michigan shot and Ahit Oksanen picked up the rebound and found Lane on the far side for a breakout pass. Lane took the puck all the way into the UM end and stuffed home his 4th of the year to cut the Wolverine lead to 3-1.

Matt Lane's goal came with less than three minutes to play in
the second period.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
BU played slightly better in the third, managing 10 shots, but a defensive breakdown lead to an odd man rush where Michigan put the game away. Max Shuart beat LaCouvee blocker side for his first of the year with just 3:38 left to make it 4-1.

Ahti Oksanen scored with 4 seconds left to round out the scoring.

LaCouvee made 34 saves in the losing effort and really none of the goals where his fault. He made a number of saves on point-blank shots and one timers.

It was BU's first loss at home all season. It is a quick turnaround for the Terriers as the host Bentley on Tuesday. Game time: 7:00pm

More to come Monday.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Three Goal Third Period Outburst Puts BU Past Michigan

For about fifty minutes last night,  Michigan controlled most of the play and limited BU's scoring chances to a minimum. The Wolverines lead 2-0 on two first period goals and carried that lead deep into the third period. Then in a blink of an eye the game was tied.

BU cut the lead in half on a power play goal from Danny O'Regan at the 10:44 marker of the third period. The play started back in the BU zone, where Brandon Fortunato went back to restart the Terrier attack after Michigan cleared right off the faceoff to start the power play. Fortunato took a few strides in his own end, before hitting Matt Grzelcyk inside the redline with a long pass. Grzelcyk wasted no time and made a heads-up one touch pass to O'Regan, who entered the zone with speed. After getting over the blue line, O'Regan used a Michigan defender a screen and riffled off a beautiful rising shot that nicked the bottom of the crossbar, before exploding the net. Michigan goalie Steve Racine had no idea where the puck was until it was already behind him.

Just twelve seconds later, the game was tied. Bobo Carpenter broke up a Michigan regroup at about the top of the circle in the Wolverine end. The puck pinballed around and found the stick of AJ Greer in the slot, where he ripped a shot that got redirected wide off a Michigan defender. From behind the net, Robbie Baillargeon picked up the miss-fire and wrapped it on goal. The shot got through and crammed off a Michigan skate at the top of the crease and bounced into the goal.

Not even a minute after Baillargeon tied the game, Michigan had a golden chance to regain the lead. Tyler Motte was in on a breakaway and Doyle Somerby did, what looked like very good a legal play to break up the chance, but that's not what the official saw. With one hand on his stick, he dislodged the puck from Motte, but he was not only called for a penalty, but it was a penally-shot for slashing. On the shot, Motte tried to beat Connor LaCouvee five hole, but was having none of that.

BU continued to dominated the third period, a period in which they outshot Michigan 14-4 and eventually scored the go-ahead-goal with less than three minutes to play.

Somerby got his revenge for the soft penalty-shot call. From the top of the near circle, he wristed home his second goal and his second game winner of the year, a unassisted strike. He got the puck at the middle point off a failed Michigan clear and then moved to his left, before letting go a shot that hit a Michigan stick on it's way toward goal. Racine, again, never saw the shot and did not even move until Somerby was back in the neutral zone on one knee celebrating.

Michigan got on the board early in this one. A spin around shot by Tyler Motte got LaCouvee to the leave the post for just a second. The puck was sitting by his right leg, but somehow there was enough room for Alex Kile to bang home his third of the year and give Michigan a 1-0 lead just 6:06 into the game.

Four and a half minutes later, UM doubled their lead on the power play. Cooper Marody roofed a shot from in tight and it looked like Michigan was going to run away with this one. They nearly extended their lead several times, but no chance was more prevalent than a power play bomb from up top that cleanly beat LaCouvee and rang off the post, but deflected into the corner.

BU had their chances before the third period eruption, too. They had almost half a minute of 5 on 3 in the second frame that saw two Ahti Oksanen one-timers miss the net. In the first period, Matt Lane slipped a shot through Racine, but it squibbed through the crease and out the other side. Lane also rang the crossbar in the closing minutes of the first.

Michigan had their chance late to tie it on the power play and with the goalie pulled, but BU's PK was stingy and LaCouvee slammed the door when called upon. For the third straight game, BU was trailing entering the third and came back to at least tie. It looks like they have once again established themselves as a dominate third period team, something that they were well known for a year ago.

The two teams will again do battle today at 4:00.

Friday, November 20, 2015

Weekend With The Wolverines

This weekend, BU hosts the 12th ranked Michigan Wolverines at Agganis for the second straight year. Michigan is 5-1-1 on the year, but has played a rather weak schedule to date. BU is the first top 10 team they will have faced and other than this weekend, they have only played one other ranked team. That was #18 Union in Schenectady and it resulted in a 5-5 tie.
From the Vault
Danny O'Regan fires off a shot on a breakaway in an October
2013 contest at Michigan. The shot hit the post and did not go in
and Michigan won the game 2-1 on a late penally-shot goal from
Alex Guptill.
Photo by Matt Dresens
Rankings usually mean jack, but they do indicate who is a decent opponent. Going off the current rankings, following this weekend, Michigan will play none, zero, not one more ranked team all season. That is a testament to just how weak the Big 10 really is.

Anyway, UM swept Merceyhurst (6-4, 3-2) at home on opening weekend and then tripped to New York to play Union and RPI. As mentioned before, they tied Union 5-5 and beat the Engineers 5-2. Michigan then split a home series with Robert Morris (5-3, 0-4), before dumping Niagara 7-3, also at home. Yes, that's five games against Atlantic Hockey teams for anyone who is keeping track.

Scouting the Wolverines
Michigan is lead in scoring by a trio of freshman. Kyle Connor has five goals and four assists for nine points, while Cooper Marody has four goals and five assists. One point behind those two is Brendan Warren, who has posted two goals and six assists for eight points.

Other players to watch include one of the top defenseman in the country in Zach Werenski, along with Tyler Motte and JT Compher.

In goal, Michigan has seen three different netminders take the crease this fall. Senior Steve Racine is 2-0-1 in four appearances with a 3.37 goals against average and a .892 save percentage. Junior Zach Nagelvoort is 3-1-0 in his four appearances and has posted a 3.00 goals against and a .878 save percentage. Chad Catt, a freshman, has allowed one goal on two shots faced.

Common Opponents 
Union 5, BU 3 (October 10th)
Michigan 5, Union 5 (October 23rd)

The Last Time They Met...
was October 25th, 2014. BU won the game late on a Matt Lane tip in goal, 3-2. Going back to 2002, the two teams have played eight times and the head to had record is dead even at 4-4-0.

BU Notes
- Connor LaCouvee is back in goal for his fifth straight start, tonight.

- According to WTBU, Nick Olsson is out with the ever specific "upper body injury". Defenseman Brian Diffley will slide up to forward and take Olsson's place on the fourth line.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

This Week In '06: Tie Game

The Terriers played just one game this week as the travelled to Providence to face the Friars. A year before, BU had to battle back from being down 1-0 in the Hockey East Quarterfinals to win the series two games to one.

Friday November 18, 2005... @ Providence 
Providence took a 1-0 lead seven minutes into the game on a Torry Gajda goal from Bryan Horan. The Friars extended their lead less than three minutes into the second period as Kyle Laughlin scored.

BU etched the lead back to one,  just a few minutes later. Boomer Ewing found the back of the net from Peter MacArthur and Chris Higgins and the Terriers tied things up midway through the third on a Dan Spang goal. MacArthur again had an assist and so did Kevin Schaeffer.

The game would go to overtime with that 2-2 score and no one would find the back of the nat again. It was the first tie of the year.

John Curry made 26 saves in the non-decision.

“It was a real solid game by us, I was really pleased with how hard we played and how thorough we were in our own zone,” said Terriers coach Jack Parker. “The only that really bothered me is how we reverted back a little bit on our power play but that was a slight negative in a 60-minute game that we played extremely well in all three zones and all three periods.

“The most important thing we needed to get out of this game was to get our defense back in order again, and we played very well defensively,” continued Parker. “The six defensemen and the four centers played real well in our own zone they limited the shots and played hard.” - From USCHO

Current Record: 3-4-1
Current Ranking: 20th, down two slots from 18th.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Weekend Lookback: I missed It

Player of the Week
Jacob Forsbacka Karlsson
2 goals, 2 Assists, 4 points... had a
hand in all four BU goals this weekend
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
This weekend I saw none of the two games other than the first period on friday night. I was in New Hampshire for two of my own hockey games so I really don't have much to say on this past weekend's games and I'll leave it at that. I will, however, be at both Michigan games next weekend.

Jacob Forsbacka Karlsson was named Hockey East Rookie of the Week.

Connor LaCouvee was named co-defenseive player of the week along with Lowell goalie Kevin Boyle. LaCouvee had a 1.87 goals against average and a .941 save percentage on the weekend.

At the Polls 
BU slid up one slot from 11 to 10. Providence was once again the top team in the Nation, getting 17 first place votes. BC was again 2nd. 10-0-0 Quinnipiac jumped up one spot to 3rd and North Dakota and Lowell rounded out the top five.

Around Hockey East
Tuesday: Army shutout UConn 2-0 in Hartford.

Thursday: Notre Dame one upped Northeastern 3-2 at home.

Friday: Merrimack doubled up UMass at the Mullins Center 4-2... Vermont edged UConn 2-1 at home... Lowell skated past Maine 2-1 at Tsongas... Northeastern and Notre Dame played to a 2-2 draw in South Bend... BC staved off a late Michigan State charge to win 6-4 at Conte. BU and Providence tied 1-1 in Providence.

Saturday: New Hampshire and Merrimack were tangled in knots, 3-3 at Lawler... BU battled back to tie Providence again, this time at home, 3-3.

Sunday: Lowell shelled Maine 6-0 at the Alfond. Vermont and UMass also tied 3-3.

Friday, November 13, 2015


Yeah... We all know what happened last time.

From the Vault
Alex Chaisson and Matt Nieto celebrate a BU goal in a 2-1
win against Providence in October of 2010.
(Photo by Matt Dresens) 
Providence comes into tonight's game as the number one ranked team in the county and are off to a fast start. The Friars are undefeated on the year coming in with a 6-0-1 record. They took three points from Miami in Oxford on opening weekend and have since beat Holy Cross, Ohio State(2x) and Colgate(2x).

Providence has the number one scoring offense in the conference with 32 goals in 7 games (4.57per game). That's more than half a goal better than second place Boston College.

Scouting the Friars
Sophomore defenseman Jake Walman leads the team in goals scored with 7, which is good for third best in the nation. He also has added 5 assists for 12 points in 7 games played. Seniors Mark Jankowski and Trevor Mingoia both have 10 points.

Other players to keep an eye on include Nick Saracino, Anthony Florentino and Tom Parisi.

In goal, Nick Ellis has done a pretty darn good job of replacing John Gillies, so far. In 6 appearances, he is 5-0-1 with a .920 save percentage and 2.18 goals against average.

BU Notes
- Connor LaCouvee will once again be in goal on Friday as expected.

The Last Time They Met...
We are not getting into this...

Unfortunately I will not be at either game this weekend because I have two of my own games this weekend in New Hampshire.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

This Week In '06: PK Kills Terriers

BU's topsy-turvy start continued this week. A week ago they came away with four points in two games. This week was the exact opposite. Friday saw the team fall in close game 3-2 at home against UNH and then get doubled up 4-2 at UMass the next night.  

Friday, November 11, 2005... BU vs UNH 

Jakob Micflikier got the Wildcats on the board in the first with a power play goal and Brett Hemingway tacked on another man advantage goal midway through the second frame. BU would battle back, though with two third period goals to tie the game.

Brad Zancanaro scored just 20 seconds into the stanza and Bryan Ewing knotted the game with less than 10 minutes to play, but, UNH again found pay dirt on the power play with a little over five minutes to play. The Wildcats went 3-7 on the power play.

John Curry again played well, making 34 saves.

“We were back on our heels and played a horrible first period-got outshot badly-but got out-chanced badly as well,” Terrier Coach Jack Parker said. “As the game progressed, we played better, but they get three power-play goals, and we go oh-for-three, so that’s obviously the difference in the game.

“You’re not going to beat UNH with two goals, and I think we had five two-on-ones: four of them we shot wide, and one we shot right into his chest. We had some good looks on the power play but didn’t bury them when we were down in the four-foot area. And Pietrasiak played very, very well. Curry played great too. It was a really well-played game by both teams.” - From USCHO

Saturday, November 12, 2005... BU @ UMass

BU once again fell behind 2-0 and had to fight back in the game. Chris Capraro notched yet another power play goal against the Terriers just five minutes into the game. To make the special teams play look even worse, Stephen Werner scored an unassisted shorthanded goal just eight minutes later. 

Brian McGuirk got the train back on the tracks midway through the second with a BU power play goal. Kenny Roche and Dan Spang picked up the assists. Just as BU was getting back in the game, they allowed they only 5x5 goal against of the weekend, when Scott Crowder scored the eventual game winner at the 15:37 mark of the second period.

John Laliberte scored BU's second power play goal and the UMass lead was 3-2 with more than half a period play. UMass goalie John Quick would not yield another goal, though. Werner added an empty net goal in the closing minute to seal the deal.

"For starters, it was a real good performance by UMass Amherst and it was a real good performance by John Curry, said BU Head Coach Jack Parker. And then the rest of the players that were out there on my club gave us absolutely nothing. Maybe a couple of guys played pretty hard but in general as a team there was no sense of urgency, there was no effort." - From Go Terriers

Current Record: 3-4-0
Current Ranking: 18th, down 4 slots from 14 last week. 

Monday, November 9, 2015

Monday Lookback: The First Sweep

Player of the Week
Matt Grzelcyk
2 goals, 1 assist. Also was
named Hockey East
Defenseman of the Week.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
This weekend was a strong case of one game leading to another. After Northeastern scored three goals in a 1:15 (with a Ryan Cloonan goal mixed in there) span on Friday night, coach David Quinn took a critical timeout to gather his team and reset them. Boy did it ever work.

The Terriers would not allow another goal until the last minute of the third period... of Saturday's game. BU scored twice in the third period Friday night to overcome a 4-3 deficit and win 5-4. Saturday was probably their best all around game of the year. They dominated the Huskies from start to finish, other than a garbage time goal that happened after Ahti Oksanen had already sealed the game with an empty netter.

So, after the timeout at 15:05 of the second period Friday night, BU out scored NU 6-1. Because of how the game went Friday, BU had all the momentum going into Saturday. They didn't disappoint, as they took it to the Huskies, outshooting them 18-2 in the first period.

Welcome Back Captain
To say the return of Captain Matt Grzelcyk was impactful is a complete understatement. Grzelcyk instantly made this team much stronger not only with his play, but with his leadership. Yes, the team had Eichel last year, but they also had great leadership, something that was lacking a bit to start the year.

Oh yeah, he also scored twice and added an assist on the game winner by Oksanen on Friday night. Not a bad first weekend back.

Goalie Situation Solved?
Connor LaCouvee has seen action in the last four games and has a 3-0-0 record with a .927 save percentage. I don't think we have seen the last of Sean Maguire, but I think he could be on a short leash. It will be interesting to see if they split this weekend with #1 Providence on the schedule. My guess is that will be determined based on how Friday night's game goes. If LaCouvee gets hosed, or lets in some soft goals, Maguire could very well start game two.

At the Polls
BU was once again number 11 in this weeks USCHO poll. North Dakota lost to Wisconsin, unseating them from the #1 slot. Providence slid up from 2nd to take the number one spot. Boston College was two, North Dakota fell to 3rd. Quinnipiac moved up one slot to 4th and Lowell was 5th.
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There are four undefeated teams left in college hockey: Providence (6-0-1), Quinnipiac (8-0-0), Harvard (3-0-1), and Yale (3-0-1).

Around Hockey East
Tuesday: BC destroyed UMass 7-0 at home.

Wednesday: Merrimack rolled past Bentley 5-1 at the John Ryan Rink in Watertown.

BC blanked Maine 3-0 at Conte... UMass doubled up UConn 4-2 in Hartford... Lowell dropped Vermont 5-3 in Burlington... New Hampshire was shutout by Michigan State in Lancing... Notre Dame snuck past Minnesota 4-3 in South Bend. BU came back to beat Northeastern at home 5-4.

Saturday: UMass completed the sweep of UConn with a 4-3 win at the Mullins Center... Lowell shutout Vermont to finish off the road sweep... Merrimack topped Canisius 3-2 in Buffalo... Minnesota avoided the sweep with a 4-1 win at Notre Dame... Michigan State beat New Hampshire again at home.

Sunday: BC again shutout Maine at home.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

BU Pulls Out A Crazy Game

Tonight was one of the strangest most entertaining and nerve-racking games that I have seen in a while.  The teams combined to score nine goals, four of which came just a minute and fifteen seconds apart from each other in the second period. 

NU almost scored in the opening minutes of the game on a jam shot in tight on Connor LaCouvee (26 saves). The puck popped up behind him, off the cross bar and out. 

Matt Grzelcyk made his presence known right away, when he scored the game's opening goal ten minutes into the game. Ryan Cloonan worked the puck up the Charlie McAvoy at the blue line before he slid it over to Grzelcyk at the near side point. From the top of the circle, Grzelcyk ripped off a wrister through a crowd, off the post and in behind NU goalie Ryan Ruck (24 saves) for his first goal of the year on his first shot of the year. 

BU expanded the lead just over five minutes into the second period. Ahti Oksanen got a shot off from a Danny O'Regan pass in the slot and drove the net hard. He created a rebound that Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson picked up and then dished to Brandon Fortunato, who was wide open back door. The pass left the goal wide open and Ruck could not recover to make the sprawling save as Fortunato roofed a shot from the bottom of the circle. 

The Huskies got back in the game less than two minutes later on Adam Gaudette's second goal of the year.  Matt Benning threw a knuckleball shot toward the goal from the far point and on it's way to the net, Gaudette tipped it down through LaCouvee's legs and in. It was reviewed for a while to see if it was played down with a high stick, but in the end, the goals stood.  

Then, things got weird. 

Garret Cockerill picked up a power play goal at 13:50 of the second to tie things up 2-2.

34 seconds later, BU was back on top. Ryan Cloonan scooped up a tough turnover by Trevor Owens at the BU blue line and skated in alone from there on Ruck. Cloonan made shifty forehand-backhand move and tucked the puck behind Ruck's outstretched right leg for his fourth goal of the year.

12 seconds after the Cloonan goal, Dylan Sikura batted home a rebound for NU. I saw none of the play. I was still typing the Cloonan goal into twitter. 

29 seconds after the Sikura goal, NU struck again when Eric Williams blasted a slapper up over LaCouvee's left shoulder and in. This one I actually did see.   

After all of that, BU took a time out and everyone had a moment to realize what the hell just happened. I honestly don't remember seeing anything like that before. Not four goals that quick. 

Three goals? Yes.

Not four, though.

The madness settled down, but the game was far from over. BU killed off a lengthy 5 on 3 early in the third and then retied the game shortly after that on a pretty passing play. Danny O'Regan had the puck poked away from him in the low circle, but it went right to Oksanen, who found Brandon Hickey all alone and looking at a wide open net right in front. Hickey didn't miss. 

Oksanen helped set up his own goal just a few minutes later. From the far wall, he sauced a backhand pass across to Matt Grzelcyk at the near point. After making the pass, Ahti broke free and drove to the net. Grzelcyk found him in the low circle, pretty much uncovered, and fed him with with a nice pass through a tight window. Oksanen caught the pass and shot all in one monition leaving Ruck with no chance. It would turn out to be his second game winner in as many games. 

The game saw no more goals, but was still back and forth the remainder of the way. NU pulled the goalie with 2:10 left and with 1:28 on the clock, JFK was sent to the box for delay of game. He covered the puck up along the far wall in a scrum with his hand. It was the right call.

NU threw everything on goal, but somehow did not score on the 6 on 4. One chance got in behind LaCouvee and was practically sitting on the goal line, but never crossed.

BU escaped with the 5-4 win and the two teams get to do it all over again tomorrow night at Matthews. 

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Grzelcyk's Back, NU Preview

The long awaited return of Captain Matt Grzelcyk is finally upon us. Today, the Boston Hockey Blog tweeted out that "pre Head Coach David Quinn, Matt Grzelcyk will play tomorrow night."
From The Vault
Matt Grzelcyk starts a rush up ice in a game at Matthews
in March 2013. BU won the game 4-2 and picked up goals
from four different players.
(Photo by Matt Dresens) 
Grzelcyk has been out since the start of the year due to offseason ACL surgery.

Tomorrow night, BU will open up their first home and home series of the year as Northeastern visits Agganis before the Terriers head over to Matthews on Saturday.

NU is off to their usual slow start, coming in at 1-5-1 on the year. Their lone win was against Colgate on opening night at home, 2-1. Since then, they have only mustered a point in one other game, their last game played. That was a 3-3 tie at Vermont. Despite outshooting Bentley 51-11, they still lost 3-2 back in mid October. In fact, they were swept in a home and home by the Falcons. NU was also swept in a series at Minnesota with the Gophers.

NU is currently shooting only 4% as a team. Yes, you hardly ever hear that stat in hockey, but when it is that low, it's worth noting. Its not like the team isn't generating chances, though. They are. They just can't score. So far.

Scouting The Huskies
John Stevens is NU's leading goal scorer with four on the year. He has also added an assist. Zach Aston-Reese also has five points, all of which are assists. Kevin Roy, who was picked by most to be the Hockey East Player of the year before the season started has only registered four assists and no goals to date.

Other Players to watch include former Terrier Sam Kurker, Colton Saucerman, Adam Gaudette and Dylan Sikura.

In goal, Derick Roy has seen the majority of the playing time.  He is 1-3-1 on the year with a .821 save percentage and a 3.52 goals against average.

BU Notes
-With Grzelcyk back, there will certainly be a shakeup with the D pairings. I think Diffley is the odd man out right now, but that can always change.

 - Both goalies will probably see action this weekend.

The Last Time They Met...
was the last week of February. They ended up playing three games in a row due to the rescheduling of the Beanpot. BU, of course, won the Beanpot championship game game 4-3 in Overtime on Matt Grzelcyk's power play goal. That Friday night, NU hung on and staved off a furious BU come back from 6-2 down to win 6-5. BU then captured the Hockey East Regular Season Crown the next night with a 6-1 win at Matthews.

I will not be able to get to the game on Saturday as I have my own hockey conflict.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

This Week In '06: The Year's First Sweep

November 4, 2005 vs Vermont 

BU got on the board just over five minutes into the game when Eric Thomassian scored from Jason Lawrence. Less than a two minutes later, Peter MacArthur added  power play goal to take a 2-0 less than 10 minutes into the game. Vermont battled back though, tying the game before the period ended, including a power play goal with just 10 seconds left in the frame.

BU struck back just a minute into the second on MacArthur's second of the game. Brandon Yip added a goal in the closing minutes of the period to round out the scoring and win 4-2. John Curry made 19 saves in the winning effort.

November 6, 2005 @ Maine 

The Terriers picked up a gutty 2-1 come-from-behind road win at the Alfond in this Sunday afternoon tilt. Maine took a 1-0 lead midway through the first on a power play goal from Greg Moore. The Terriers again responded like in the UVM game with two second period goals. Jason Lawrence tied things up 1-1 five minutes into the frame and Brad Zancanaro scored the eventual game winner at the 16:41 mark.

The lead held and BU won their first road game against a team that eventually would be in the Frozen Four come tournament time. This was easily Curry's best game so far. He made 37 saves, including 19 in the third period alone.

“The best thing about game tonight was how well John Curry played,” said Parker. “He looked like John Curry of last year, very poised, from the get-go he was like ‘shoot, see what happens.”
- From USCHO

“This was definitely my best game of the year and it was right up there among the best of my career,” said Curry.

“I felt really good tonight as far as just being poised and seeing the puck really well,” added Curry, who credited his teammates with playing well in front of him.
- From Bangor Daily News

Current Record: 3-2-0
Current Ranking: 14th, up 5 slots from last week   

Monday, November 2, 2015

Weekend Look back: Ups and Downs

Player of the Week:
Ahti Oksanen
Two goals including the overtime game
winner vs Denver on Saturday.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
This weekend was a bit of a roller coaster to say the least for BU. The Denver game was about a full season of emotion wrapped up into 60 minutes. Ryan Cloonan's goal less than two minutes into the game was exactly what BU needed. It was a complete 180 from what happened the night before at Merrimack when the Warriors scored on the game's first shot.

After Brandon Hickey's absolutely ridiculous backhand goal that made it 3-1, it looked like BU would run away with the game. But Denver had other ideas. The Pios scored twice in the third period, once short handed to tie the game 4-4 in the closing minutes.

BU was absolutely dominated in the third period and, at one point, they were out shot 12-3.

All was saved, though when Ahit Oksanen scored his second goal of the game just 21 seconds into overtime.

Getting On The Board
John McCloud, Robbie Baillargeon, and Ahti Oksanen all scored their first goals of the year this weekend. It was really about time Oksanen broke-out. He had been been by far the most snakebitten player on the team and he was just missing a number of chances.

Baillargeon needs to get going, too. He and AJ Greer can be a force if they can get in gear. Speaking of getting in gear, Jordan Greenway, although he didn't score, played his best weekend of the year. The second round draft pick showed why he was picked that high starting on Friday night at Merrimack. He had a shift in the first period that seemed to light a fire under him. He was knocked off the puck originally, but fought hard to get it back and even got a shot on goal during the play. Later in the period, he made a spectacular pass through two defenders to spring Matt Lane in on goal. It was his first collegiate point. Greenway also picked up a point on Cloonan's goal in the Denver game.

Clean Up The Middle Please
This weekend, the neutral zone was an absolute horror show for the Terriers. There were several turnovers either between the blue lines or just into the attacking zone that lead to odd-man rushes the other way.

Starting on Friday, JFK tried to make a drop pass at the MC blue line and it was picked off and turned into a 2 on 2 the other way. That led to the third Merrimack goal, right after BU had been controlling the play. It was an absolutely back breaking turnover. It wasn't the only one, though. Saturday, Brian Diffley attempted to step up and keep the play in the DU zone. It didn't work. Matt Marcinew chipped it right by him and then stripped the puck from Karlsson at the red line before passing to Will Butcher, who scored to make it 1-1 on a 2 on 1. 

Brandon Fortunato also had a horrendous turnover, but this one was deep in his own zone. The play was quickly turned into a chance, then a rebound, and then a goal.
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At The Polls
BU dropped to 11th in the national poll after falling on Tuesday at UConn and splitting the weekend's games.

North Dakota was again your number one ranked team. Providence jumped up one slot from 3rd to 2nd. Boston College moved up to 3rd from 4th. Lowell made the jump from 7th to 4th and 6-0-0 Qunnipiac rounded out the top 5.

Around Hockey EastTuesday: UConn surged past BU 5-2 at home.

Thursday: Vermont snuck past Northeastern 3-2 at Matthews

Friday: UMass took down Maine 5-4 in overtime... Boston College topped Denver 4-3 at home... Providence ran over Colgate 7-2 in Hamilton... Lowell was upended by Minnesota Duluth 2-1 in Duluth... BU fell to Merrimack 4-3 at Lawler.

Saturday: Notre Dame doubled up UConn 2-1 in Hartford... New Hampshire beat Merrimack 4-2 in North Andover... Northeastern and Vermont skated to a 3-3 tie in Burlington... Princeton took out Maine 3-1... Providence completed the sweep of Colgate with a 4-3 win... Yale handed UMass third first loss, 6-1... Lowell rebounded for a 6-3 win at Duluth... BU dropped Denver 5-4 in overtime.

Sunday: Notre Dame steamrolled UConn 8-2 in Brooklyn.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Quick Denver Recap

Yesterday afternoon, BU pulled out a 5-4 overtime win against Denver. They were up 4-2 in the third when Denver took over the game and scored two goals including a shorthanded tally to tie things up 4-4 and send the game to overtime.

That's where Ahti Oksanen scored his second goal of the game giving BU the 5-4 win.

Ryan Cloonan, Robbie Baillargeon and Brandon Hickey had the other BU goals. Will Butcher, Gabe Levin, Troy Terry and Quentin Shore all scored for Denver

Sorry about the really short recap, I had a game of my own last night after the BU game and didn't get back until around 12:30. More to come in the next few day.