Friday, December 11, 2015

BU Falls to Yale at the Whale

Brian Diffley and Chris Izmirlian get
into a shoving match along the boards
in the second period.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Tonight was battle from start to finish. Both teams played a very physical contest and that led to many little scrums after the whistle. Jordan Greenway was at the center of practically all of those scrums.

It was a strange game, too. There were only two power plays the entire night. BU had one late and Yale had a five minute major on a Ryan Cloonan boarding call at the end of the second period. There were certainly calls, on both teams, that could have been made throughout the game and were not.

After a scoreless first period, BU jumped out to a 1-0 lead just under seven minutes into the second frame on Ahti Oksanen's ninth goal of the year. Jordan Greenway set the whole play with a strong rush up the ice that started deep in his own end. Inside the Yale zone, he made another impressive play to protect the puck and then find Oksanen in the slot. Ahti one-timmed the pass by Yale goalie Alex Lyon to his low blocker side.

Greenway and the second line were a force all night. They out worked Yale and used their size to their advantage. In the physical nature of this game, they were definitely BU's strongest line.

Yale struck twice in the closing minutes of the period. Before the Cloonan major and game misconduct, Ryan Hitchcock banged home a rebound goal to Connor LaCouvee's left side. It was his fifth goal of the year from Mitch Witek and Stu Willson at 18:13.

Cloonan was called for the major penalty at 19:03 of the second period. 37 seconds later, Yale had the lead. John Hayden scored his first of two on the evening off a similar onetime shot to the Oksanen goal.  Ryan Hitchcock and Joe Snively picked up the assists.

BU killed off the remaining 4:04 of the penally that overlapped into the third period and then controlled the play following the kill. They put two strong shifts together that generated several scoring opportunities, but nothing found the back of the net.

Mike Moran goes hard to the net in the third period. This was
just another example of how physical this game was.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Yale weathered the storm and caught a break on a defensive breakdown by the Terriers. John Hayden led an oddman rush the other way, chose not to pass and slipped a shot in five-hole on LaCouvee with 13:29 to play.

BU fought back, though. They were finally given a power play with under five minutes to play when Brandon Fortunato drew a tripping call. Coach Quinn rolled the dice and pulled LaCouvee with will over three minutes left to make it six on four.  Fortunato and Charlie McAvoy both set up Bobo Carpenter for a onetimer from the near circle. Carpenter drilled the shot pass Lyon with 2:42 to play.

BU almost tied things on the next shift, but Lyon stood tall to a well setup onetimer from Oksanen on the far side. Yale was able to close out the game from there and won 3-2.

Tomorrow night, BU head over to face undefeated Quinnipiac.

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