Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Weekend Lookback: A Welcome Return

Player of the Week: Clayton Keller
2 goals, 4 assists
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Last night, BU topped Yale 5-2 at home, and over the weekend, split a pair of games at Vermont to close out the first half of the 2016-2017 season.

The weekend marked the return of Clayton Keller, who gave the BU offense a major shot in the arm. Keller in three games back after suffering a knee injury notched six points and is rolling into World Junior Camp.

Speaking of the World Juniors, BU could potentially be without eight players for their game against Union on January 5th.

“It’s such a wonderful tournament,” said Quinn. “It's a great experience to play for your country. We’re talking about one of the few tournaments in hockey where all the best players at that age group in the world are actually in the tournament.”

When asked if his players would be tired from the festivities, Quinn said “No, they’re 18 and 19 years old. They get plenty of rest.”

Oettinger Standing Tall

Over the weekend, Jake Oettinger recorded his first road shutout as a Terrier, blanking UVM 4-0 and turning aside all 28 shots he faced. Last night against Yale, the freshman netminder, who will also be at WJC camp, stopped 28 of 30 shots faced. In a 5-2 game, the play of the goalie can sometimes be overlooked, but not by coach Quinn.

“We don’t take him [Oettinger] for granted, that’s for sure. He’s had a great first half. He gives our team a calming effect and I’m really happy he’s a Terrier,” mentioned Quinn.

Oettinger was also named Hockey East rookie of the week prior to the Yale game for his performance in Vermont.

Offense From Other Places
Yes, Clayton Keller returned this weekend, but BU also found some goals from down the depth chart. Last night, Shane Switzer netted the first two goals of his BU career. In total, the Detroit area defenseman has played in just nine games in the last two years. Chase Phelps notched his first two points of the year, including the game-winner on Saturday in Vermont. He added an assist to Switzer’s second goal last night, as well.

Bellows to the Bench
It was a tough weekend for Kieffer Bellows. The freshman forward, who was invited to USA WJC camp found himself on the bench for two of the three games. This comes after getting sat down for the majority of BU’s home game against Providence last weekend. Friday in Vermont he was -2 and took a tough slashing penalty that UVM scored on right before the conclusion of the first period.

Quinn said after Saturday’s UVM game, “sometimes guys need to watch from above.”

At The Polls
Prior to last night’s 5-2 win over Yale, BU fell one peg in the USCHO rankings from 5th to 6th. The top three from a week ago remained the same: Minnesota Duluth 1, Denver 2, Penn State 3. Harvard jumped up two slots from 6th to 4th and BC rounded out the top five.


Hockey East Scoreboard
Friday:
UMass 1, at UConn 3
Merrimack 1, at Lowell 4
America International 3, at Maine 5
Providence 5, at RIT 1
Boston University 2, at Vermont 4

Saturday:
Lowell 5, at Merrimack 1
Boston College 2, at Notre Dame 3
America International 2, at Maine 7
New Hampshire 1 at Dartmouth 5
Providence 3, at RIT 1
Boston University 4, at Vermont 0

Tuesday:
UMass 3, at Princeton 4
Yale 2, at Boston University 5

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Pair of Switzer Goals Power BU Past Yale

It was Shane Switzer’s night to shine as the sophomore defenseman, who makes the occasional appearance in the Terrier lineup, netted the first two goals of his college hockey career in BU’s 5-2 win over Yale. 

Charlie McAvoy opened the scoring midway through the first. Jordan Greenway wristed a shot up top that caromed off McAvoy in the slot and past Yale goalie Sam Tucker. It was McAvoy’s second goal of the year. 
Shane Switzer celebrates after scoring his first goal as a Terrier
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
“It was a good win against a good team,” mentioned Coach Quinn. “We got off to a bit of a slow start and I thought about eight minutes into the first we started to have some offensive zone time and going to the net.”

Going to the net is exactly what defenseman Shane Switzer did.

Switzer potted his first of two just before the conclusion of the period. The whole play was set up by a fabulous pass by Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson that found Switzer uncovered in the low slot. The offensive defenseman was all alone, but was right on top of Tucker. Switzer made a nifty move to move the puck to his backhand and slide it into an open net.

“It was just a great feed from Jakob. I wasn’t sure he was going to get it to me and I was just able to put it in, said Switzer after the game.
Bobo Carpenter scores from
Clayton Keller.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)

Bobo Carpenter made it 3-0 59 seconds into the second frame. Clayton Keller made a strong feed from behind the goal line to find Carpenter out in front. From there, Carpenter slammed it home low on Tucker for his fourth of the year.

Then it was it was back to the Switzer show. Oskar Andrén pulled a loose puck out of the pile in the slot and worked it back up to Switzer at the point. In the high slot, Switzer patiently waited for a lane and picked a corner on Tucker to make it 4-0.

Jokingly, Switzer noted, “the Swedes loves passing to me today.”

“We’ve always liked Shane as a player. He’s a great kid, works hard and is a very good hockey player,” said Quinn.

John Hayden finally got Yale on the board at the 6:39 marker of the period. Rain Hitchcock and Joe Snively picked up assists on the play.

Clayton Keller added a power play goal off another nice feed from JFK for his seventh on the year.

Hitchcock rounded out the scoring early in the third with a nice shot from the mid slot through a screen.

Jake Oettinger made some timely saves and was a key factor in the win despite the score. He finished with 28 on the night.

BU is off until January 5th when Union comes to town.

Monday, December 12, 2016

Looking At Yale

In the final game before the semester break, BU takes on the struggling Yale Bulldogs at Agganis, Tuesday night. 
From The Vault
Bobo Carpenter celebrates after scoring an extra-attacker goal
at Yale last December. The Bulldogs hung on for a 3-2 win.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)

Yale comes into this game with a 4-5-2 record, which is somewhat disappointing for a team projected to finish at the top of the ECAC. The Bulldogs returned 70% of their scoring from a year ago, and while scoring really hasn’t been an issue (3.09 goals per game) quality wins has been. Yale has beaten RPI twice, Sacred Heart and Holy Cross. Among those four, Holy Cross has the highest PWR at 46.

Yale did manage to tie Clarkson twice in back to back games. The Golden Knights have had a decent start to the year, currently sitting at 9-7-3.

Scouting the Bulldogs
It’s no surprise to see senior John Hayden atop the Yale scoring chart. In seven games played, the former USA WJC member has nine goals and six assists for fifteen points. Sophomore Joe Snively also comes in with fifteen points by way seven goals and eight assists.

Other players to watch include Ryan Hitchcock, Adam Larkin, and Frankie DiChiara.

In goal, both Patrick Spano and Sam Tucker have split time in hopes of filling the gap left by Alex Lyon’s departure. Spano, a senior, played all of one game last year and has seen time in nine games this year. He holds an .892 save percentage and a 2.84 goals against to go along with a 4-3-2 record. Tucker, on the other hand, is 0-2-0 in three appearances with an .839 SV% and a 3.98 GAA.

BU Notes
- Dante Fabbro will be out of the lineup for the second straight game, as he is at Canada’s World Junior camp. 

- When asked why Kieffer Bellows didn’t play Saturday night in Vermont, Coach Quinn said, “sometimes guys need to see the game from above and take a night off.” It wouldn’t surprise me if he sat tomorrow night.

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Oettinger, BU Blank Vermont

BURLINGTON - Shooting percentage isn’t normally a stat tossed around in hockey. However, it is when a team shoots the lights out and that's exactly what BU did in the third period. The Terriers shot 100% in the third period tonight, going three for three to break open a 1-0, nail-biting contest at Gutterson Fieldhouse.

Nick Roberto celebrates after scoring in the third to put BU
up 3-0.
(Photo by Matt Dresens) 
It started just 45 seconds into the final frame. Clayton Keller, after setting up some very promising looks last night on the man advantage, found the back of the net to double the Terrier lead. Jordan Greenway won a battle in the corner and worked the puck up top to Keller. From the dot, Keller patiently waited for a shooting lane to open. When he got his look, he didn’t miss, ringing a shot off the far post and in.

“Greenway did a great job retrieving the puck; we were able to keep the play alive and get a huge goal. A game changing goal. The power play delivered in a key time. Our power play was pivotal all weekend,” noted Coach Quinn after the game.

Nick Roberto scored on the second Terrier shot of the third with 3:56 to play. It was a high rising dart that beat Lekkas up stairs. Pat Curry picked up the lone assist on the play.

Back in the first, Chase Phelps opened the scoring on his first goal of the year. Oskar Andrén let go a shot from the high circle, and the rebound from UVM goalie Stefanos Lekkas dropped right in Phelps’ lap. From the bottom of the crease, the junior forward was able to swat home what turned out to be the eventual game winner.

Jake Oettinger was excellent in net. He turned aside 28 shots in total for his first road shutout of the year. Without a doubt, his most notable save was on a two on none at the tail end of the second period. He calmly followed the play and was in position to make a strong save after some quick passing.

“He made some huge saves,” mentioned Quinn. “A 2 on 0 and a 1 on 0, you don’t want to give those up and we obviously have to limit those opportunities. I thought we did a pretty good job defensively. We minimized our turnovers compared to last night and I thought we managed the puck better tonight.”

Brandon Hickey made it three for three in shots with an empty netter with a little over a minute to play.

Coach Quinn was pleased with his team’s effort tonight. “To come in here and play a really good hockey team and to play in the fashion we did after having a tough loss last night, I’m really proud of our guys.”

Yes, BU only generated three shots in the third, but there were some dominant stretches of hockey by all four lines. They didn’t generate shots, but there was no way Vermont was getting the puck out. Like Quinn said, the second goal was huge. It was a totally different game after that and with the way Oettinger was playing, a Vermont comeback didn’t seem possible.

BU is back at it on Tuesday at home against Yale in the final game before the semester break.

Friday, December 9, 2016

Forgione Tally The Difference, Cats Take Game One

BURLINGTON - It was a frustrating night for the Terriers, as they watched the UVM Catamounts score twice in the third period to bust open a 2-2 tie and, take game one of a two game set up here in Burlington.

Vermont goalie Stefanos Lekkas stones Charlie McAvoy at
the end of the first period, one of 20 saves on the night.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)

Tom Forgione netted the game winner with 12:29 left in the third on a delayed penalty. The goal came after some serious UVM pressure that drew a Chad Krys holding call. Before BU could touch up, Forgione buried his fourth goal of the year to give the Cats a 3-2 lead.

BU never got a push in the third. They had some decent looks on the power play prior to the go-ahead goal, but not enough shots. In total, BU generated just five shots in the third period.

Back in the first, the Terriers got on the board early with a power play strike from Bobo Carpenter just 3:17 into the game. It was his third of the year, with assists from Kieffer Bellows and Chad Krys.

Midway through the frame, UVM found the equalizer when Anthony Petruzzelli scored his first goal of the year. It came after Vermont looked rather sloppy in their own end, but the game totally changed when Petruzzelli picked up a loose puck in the bottom of the circle and roofed it on Jake Oettinger.

Vermont took the lead with less than a minute to play in the period on the power play. Matt O’Donnell got a shot through from the right point that found it’s way up under the bar and past Oettinger for his first colligate goal.

BU answered with another power play goal in the second to tie it 2-2. Patrick Harper scored on a broken play after a strong setup by Clayton Keller and Jordan Greenway. Harper beat UVM goalie Stefanos Lekkas up top, as the netminder was out of position on the quick release by Harper in the slot.

Ross Colton sealed the deal with an empty netter with 1:05 remaining.

The third period did offer two nice brawls. It’s clear these teams don’t have very much love lost and also shows how competitive this series is. It should be interesting, as the two teams will go at it again tomorrow night.

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Weekend With The Catamounts

From The Vault
Charlie McAvoy bodies UVM's Johnathan
Turk in last year's meeting on
December 4th, 2015. 
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
For a weekend series that really didn’t have a lot of flavor behind it when the schedule was first announced, this weekend's pair of games at Vermont could have a major impact on not only the Hockey East race, but the national tournament as well.

Vermont was a consensus pick to finish in the bottom of the league standings and well out of the top 16 in the PWR prior to the season. Add on to that the fact that they faced a hazing scandal involving the freshmen, which led to some of the players from last year’s roster being cut for “athletic reasons” (they over recruited), and the outlook for the season was bleak.

Well, UVM has been anything but dull so far. The Cats are 9-3-2, tied with Harvard for fourth in the PairWise (yeah, it’s about time to start looking at that, I guess), and sit in third place in Hockey East with nine points.

UVM is currently riding a six game unbeaten streak, in which they picked up four points over UMass, three points from Maine and, trounced Quinnipiac 5-1 in Belfast in the Friendship Four championship game. Other notable wins include a 3-0 blanking of Michigan at home and a 5-2 win at Clarkson to open the season.

BU has dominated Vermont in recent competition. The Terriers are 11-3-1 dating back to February 28, 2010, the last time UVM won two straight games against the Terriers. Last year the two teams split a two game series at Agganis in December, with Vermont winning 4-2 on Friday and BU scoring a 5-3 win on Saturday.

Scouting The Catamounts

Freshman Ross Colton leads the team in scoring with twelve points by way of a balanced six goals and six assists. Senior Captain Mario Puskarich, who was suspended five games in the hazing scandal, is second, coming in with five goals and five assists. Craig Puffer also has ten points, posting six goals and four assists.

Other players to watch include Jarid Privitera, Rob Darrar and Brady Shaw.

In goal, freshman Stefanos Lekkas has stolen the starting job from senior Mike Santaguida. In 11 games played, Lekkas is 8-1-2 with a 1.72 goals against average and a .940 save percentage. Satnaguida, on the other hand, is 1-2-0 and has registered a 3.66 GAA to go along with a .889 goals against.

BU Notes
- Clayton Keller could potentially be back this weekend. The Boston Hockey Blog reports he is “day to day”

- Tommy Kelley will be done for the rest of the semester with a lower body injury. He was walking around the rink on Friday in Providence with a boot on his foot.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Weekend Lookback: Boxed Up

Player of the Week
Nik Olsson
2 goals, no assists, 2 points.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Penalties. Penalties. Penalties. There is simply no other storyline from this past weekend’s series with the Providence Friars. Over the course of the two games, BU took 18 of them, including five alone in the first period on Friday night.
The Terriers did a nice job on the kill Friday, holding the Friars scoreless on the man advantage dispute having to kill off a five-minute major and an extended five on three. Even though Providence never found the back of the net on Friday, the penalties still took their toll.

“We had to kill eight minutes of penalties in the first period and that really took us out of our rhythm,” Said Coach Quinn.

Saturday was much of the same. BU took a staggering 10 penalties and was chasing the game from midway through the opening frame. Unlike the night before, PC was able to cash in on the power play once and scored again just one second after a Nick Roberto penalty expired.

Penalties were a major issue for the entire team, but maybe more so for Kieffer Bellows. Bellows only (I use that term nicely) took three penalties over the course of two games, but was benched for the majority of Saturday’s game. When asked about why Bellows was sat, Quinn simply said, “penalties.” Like the old toilet paper ads used to say “less is more.” I think that’s what we got from Quinn on this one.

Coming Back
The comeback: It’s been a staple of Dave Quinn’s BU teams since he took over in the Fall of 2013. BU once again dug themselves out of a late third period hole on Saturday night to salvage a 2-2 tie. Friday, despite not playing their best game and having a parade to the penalty box, the Terriers overcame a first period deficit by scoring two goals in the second to win 2-1.

“I’m not going to apologize for winning a hockey game that you don’t feel great about your performance in because the season has a funny way of playing out. There are going to be nights you play really well and you don’t win and there are gonna be nights you don’t play great and you win… I think we dodged a bullet,” Quinn said after Friday’s game.

They may have dodged a bullet, but they also showed some character. Good teams have to go through games like these and find a way to win (or tie). It’s these types of situations that help the team become battle tested for a playoff run in March and hopefully April.

Good To Be Back
Nik Olsson made an immediate impact in his return to the Terrier lineup this weekend. The junior forward from San Diego scored the game-winning goal Friday night and the game-tying goal with less than three minutes left on Saturday. According to Brian Kelley, BU’s director of Media, Olsson’s Friday night tally was his first since the 2015 Hockey East Championship game vs Lowell. BU has played 56 games since, and Olsson has missed 32 of them due to injury. His most recent setback was due to an undisclosed “upper body injury” that was reportedly not related to the shoulder injury that sidelined him for most last season. Olsson's last game was against Quinnipiac back on October 22nd.

Scoring In Bunches
Daily Free Press writer Nick Frazier pointed out after BU scored two quick goals on Friday that it was the fifth time this year the team had scored two goals in less than 1:25. Saturday, they scored two in 2:21.

At The Polls
BU jumped up one peg to 5th in the USCHO rankings. Minnesota Duluth was again number one and Denver was second. Making their first ever appearance in the top five was Penn State at three, while Boston College was fourth.

Hockey East Scoreboard
Tuesday:
Boston College 2, @ Northeastern 1

Friday:
Notre Dame 4, @ UMass 5
Maine 1, @ New Hampshire 5
UConn 3, @ Lowell 2
Boston University 2, @ Providence 1

Saturday:
Lowell 2, @ UConn 2 (OT)
Notre Dame 3, @ UMass 0
New Hampshire 4, @ Maine 3
Boston College 3 vs North Dakota 4 (at Madison Square Garden)
Providence 2, @ Boston University 2

Friday, December 2, 2016

BU Doubles up Providence

Tonight in Providence, Jake Oettinger and the BU penalty kill were able to propel the Terriers past the Friars behind two second period goals by Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson and Nik Olsson.

BU got into penalty trouble early in this one, taking five penalties in the first period. One of those was a contact to the head game misconduct by Nick Roberto that put the Terriers down a man for 5:00 minutes. Inside the major, John MacLoud was hit with a roughing call that gave PC an extended five on three.
Jake Oettinger makes one of 12 first period saves. The
freshman netminder finished with 38 on the night.
(Photo by Matt Dresens) 
The Terriers were able to get a couple key blocks and some very timely saves by Oettinger to avoid going down big early.

“Certainly the story of the game was our goalie. He was immense. We had to kill 8 minutes of penalties in the first and that really took us out of our rhythm,” added coach Quinn.

Providence got on the board 4:46 into the game on a horrendous turnover behind the BU net by Charlie McAvoy. The puck squirted loose into the slot, where Kasper Bjorkqvist was able to take two good strides, cock back and fire a laser past Oettinger, who had no chance.

BU finally was able to gain some momentum in the second period after posting only four shots in the opening frame. JFK was able to break in on the far side and with speed, and then cut across the crease and beat PC goalie Hayden Hawkey blocker side on a backhander. McAvoy and Brandon Hickey picked up the assists.

Less than two minutes later, Nik Olsson found a loose puck in the bottom of the right wing circle, before gathering it and roofing a turnaround shot. It was his first goal since the 2015 Hockey East Championship Game.

Overall, Providence carried the majority of the play. They had several opportunities to tie it late, but Oettinger again slammed the door shut.

"I thought we were chasing the game for most of the night. We had a push in the second period when we got our two goals and looked like we were going to right the ship. Then we took another penalty and they really stoned us in the third," said Quinn.
It was the type of game where BU didn’t have their best effort but still came away with two points. It was something coach Quinn mentioned, saying, “anytime you can come on the road and get two points in Hockey East it is an accomplishment.”

BU will have to be better tomorrow night, as the two teams go back at it again at Agganis.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Third Period Surge Pushes BU Past Harvard

In yet another back and forth, blow for blow BU-Harvard game, the Terriers came out on top with a 5-3 win at Agganis in front of 4,556, thanks in large part to two timely third period goals.

Patrick Curry celebrates with Nick Roberto after scoring with
less than two minutes left in regulation.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
With the game tied after two frames, Nick Roberto netted the eventual game-winner 3:07 into the final stanza. It was a broken play that saw John MacLoud fire a shot wide off the end boards. Roberto corralled the puck and looked to make a centering pass to Gabriel Chabot, but the puck hit off Harvard goalie Merrick Madsen’s stick and into the back of the net. It was Roberto’s third goal of the season.

With the game still very much still in the balance and the potential for Harvard to pull the goalie, Patrik Curry all but sealed the deal with a strike with 1:30 left.

“Bobo [Carpenter] made a nice play off the wall and I had some speed coming through the middle. I was in on the goalie so fast, I just tried to put it low blocker and luckily it went in. It was nice to get the assurance goal,” said Curry about his goal.

Coach Quinn was generally pleased with his team, saying, “I thought we did a pretty good job taking away their forwards, I’m really proud of our guys. It’s a great way to go into a little break. We got the [next] weekend off and we knew we were gonna have to live with this result for 10 days. It’s a lot easier to live with a win.”

Harvard's Sean Malone got the scoring started back in the first period. It came just minutes after Doyle Somberly had a goal disallowed for goalie interference. Similar to Roberto’s goal, Malone attempted a centering pass that never found its intended target. Instead, his pass banked off a BU defender out in front and went through Connor LaCouvee’s legs.

Kieffer Bellows knotted the game less than four minutes later on a rebound goal from Patrick Curry and Charlie McAvoy.

BU had a chance to break open the period with an extended five on three at the end of the frame, but it was the Crimson who cashed in. Bellows attempted to walk the blue line and dump off a backhanded, no-look pass, but Alexander Kerfoot read the play and jumped the route. He walked in alone from the Terrier blue line and beat LaCouvee upstairs for a 3 on 5 shorthanded goal.

The game’s number one star, Patrick Harper leveled the game 23 seconds later on the power play. Dante Fabbro worked the puck down to Jacob Forsbacka Karlsson at the side of the cage. From there, Karlsson slipped a pass through the crease over to Harper, who had the whole net to shoot at. It was his 6th goal of the season.

“That was a huge goal. You didn’t want to live with a 5 on 3 shorthanded goal. That’s tough to swallow, but to be able to get it right back was huge,” added Quinn

BU took their first lead of the game 3:49 into the second. Dante Fabbro wristed home a power play goal from the left point, beating Madsen for his third goal of the year.

30 seconds later, Malone struck again, wristing home a shot from the right wing dot over LaCouvee’s shoulder and in the far side. It was a rather weak moment for LaCouvee, in an otherwise strong game from the junior netminder.

This was a strong bounce back win for the team after a 4-0 blanking by UConn on Saturday. It will certainly go a long way in the PairWise rankings come tournament time.

BU is now off ten days. Their next game is Friday, December 2nd at Providence.

Harvard Preview

BU looks to bounce back from a disappointing 4-0 shutout against UConn on Saturday night when the host the Harvard Crimson at Agganis at 7:00 tonight. It will be the final game of the month of November for the Terriers, as they are off next weekend.
From The Vault
BU's Chris Connolly and Harvard's Connor Morrison
battle for a loose puck at center ice in a 5-2 BU win on
 January 15, 2011. Connolly had two goals in this game.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)   

Connor LaCouvee, who picked up his first win of the season in his first start on Friday night at Uconn will be in net for BU. He made 28 saves and allowed just one goal in his first start since February 20th.

Harvard comes into this game on a tear. They are 5-1-1 on the year and last weekend snapped Boston College’s 10 game win streak with a dominating 5-2 victory over the Eagles at home. Harvard’s only loss came at the hands of the Quinnipiac Bobcats two weeks ago in Hamden.

Last year, the BU-Harvard game in early January at the Bright Center was easily the most entertaining game of the season. Harvard had a 5-3 lead with less than four minutes left in the third, only to see Matt Grzelcyk, Danny O’Regan, and Ahti Oksanen all score in just over two minutes for BU to steal a 6-5 win.

Scouting the Crimson
Harvard is led offensively by Tyler Moy. The senior forward from San Diego has five goals and six assists for eleven points in seven games played. Fellow senior Sean Malone has chipped in with four goals and five assists. Harvard has averaged 4.13 goals per game. Not bad for a team that lost Hobey Baker winner Jimmy Vesey and Kyle Criscuolo off their roster from a year ago. Alex Kerfoot, who was their second leading scorer with 34 points (four goals, 34 assists) last year. has eight points on the year, good for third on the team.

In goal, Merrick Madsen is the only netminder to see time. He is 5-1-1, with one shutout (against Arizona State) with a .924 save percentage and a 1.85 goals against average.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Weekend With The Huskies

This weekend, BU get’s back into league play with a home and home series with UConn. Tonight’s game will be in Hartford at the XL Center and Saturday will be back on Comm Ave at Agannis.

UConn has had an up and down start to the season, coming in at 3-3-5. Yes, the Huskies already have five ties on the year. They opened the season with back to back home shutouts against Alabama Huntsville, but have only found the win column one other time. That was a 4-2 win at Notre Dame in the last weekend of October. Last weekend, UConn fell 7-4 at Ohio State on Friday and tied the Buckeyes 3-3 the following night.

Last season, BU and UConn played two games at the end of October. The Terriers battled to a 4-2 win at home on October 24th, thanks in large part to two third period goals, one by Brandon Fortunato and the other by Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson. Three days later, in a rare Tuesday night tilt in Hartford, UConn’s Tage Thompson went off, posting a hat-trick in a 5-2 Huskies route. It is the only UConn win against BU in five all time meetings.

Scouting The Huskies

Tage Thompson has picked up where he left off last year, leading UConn with 14 points. In 11 games played, the St. Louis Blues draft pick has seven goals and seven assists. Behind him is former BU commit Max Letunov, who has racked up four goals and seven assists in ten games played.

In goal, senior Rob Nichols and freshman Adam Huska have split time between the pipes. Nichols is 2-1-3 and has a .915 save percentage to go along with a 2.40 goals against average. Huska on the other hand, is 1-2-2 with a .916 save percentage and a 3.11 GAA.

BU Notes
- According to the Daily Free Press, Connor LaCouvee will get the start on Friday night in the BU net.

- No word on some of the injuries reported last week.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Michigan Lookback

Player of the Week
Jordan Greenway, 1 goal, 2 assists
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Unfortunately, I was not able to make the trip out to Ann Arbor this weekend as I was on my own hockey road trip in New Hampshire. I was, however, able to watch most of Friday’s game and the third period of Saturday’s game, so I have a few thoughts on the weekend.

Game one was a disaster. In the first period, Michigan capitalized on both of their power play chances to get off and running. The BU penalty kill that looked solid against Northeastern just a week ago was anything but on Friday night.

Unlike Michigan, the Terriers were unable to get anything going on their own power play, despite getting six opportunities on the man advantage. Jake Oettinger allowed three goals on 20 shots, and overall the team just didn’t have the spark they have shown in games earlier this season, as they dropped game one 4-0.

Saturday saw a huge shake up to the lineup. Two defensemen, Shane Switzer and Brian Diffley were slotted in as forwards. Switzer played right wing alongside Patrick Curry at center and Tommy Kelley on the left side, while Diffley played left wing on the fourth line with Gabriel Chabot in the middle and Oskar Andrén on the right. It was a much-needed shuffle for a team that hadn’t scored a goal in four periods going into game two.
Like I said before, I was only able to see the third period of this game. With the score tied 1-1 midway through the final frame, the two teams scored four goals in less than six minutes. Charlie McAvoy gave BU their first lead of the series, only to see Dexter Dancs score a weak angle goal less than two minutes later.

Finally, BU got their offense into gear, in large part to Jordan Greenway, who tipped in a JFK shot to regain the BU lead before adding an assist on Patrick Harper’s insurance goal a couple shifts later.

It was encouraging to see them finally take off in the third, but injuries are starting to mount up. Clayton Keller, Ryan Cloonan, and Nik Olsson can't come back soon enough. BU is lucky in the sense that they have two “extra” offensive defenseman who can slide in and play forward in a pinch.

Clearly, the team is better off with Cloonan, Keller, and Olsson up front. BU essentially played this weekend with two viable lines and the offensive productions shows that. They picked up two goals from defenseman, one on the power play by Dante Fabbro and the other by McAvoy when he pinched down and slammed home a centering pass from Greenway. BU scored four goals this weekend and only six players had points; two defenseman and four forwards, all from the top two lines.

Harper Named Rookie of the Week
Patrick Harper was named Hockey East Rookie of the week. He scored a goal and added two assists in Saturday's 4-2 win. He now has a team-leading 14 points in nine games played by way of five goals and nine assists.

At The Polls
BU fell down one peg in the USCHO rankings from 4th to 5th. For the first time this year, someone other than Minnesota Duluth or North Dakota sits atop the rankings. Denver leapfrogged Duluth to take the number one spot, picking up 28 first place votes. Duluth slid down to second, but still picked up 18 first place votes, while Boston college received the final six first place votes and is ranked third. Quinnipiac and BU rounded out the top five.

Hockey East Scoreboard
Tuesday:
New Hampshire 3, at Boston College 5
Friday:
Lowell 2, at Maine 5
Mass 3 at Merrimack 1
UConn 4, at Ohio State 7
BU 0, at Michigan 4

Saturday:
Notre Dame 5, at Northeastern 2
Vermont 2, at UMass 1
UConn 3, at Ohio State 3 (OT)
Arizona State 5, at New Hampshire 4 (OT)
BU 4, at Michigan 2

Sunday:
Maine 1, at Lowell 4
Merrimack 3, at New Hampshire 3 (OT)
Arizona State 1, at Boston College 3
Notre Dame 0, Northeastern 0 (postponed after two periods due to Zamboni failure/poor ice conditions)

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Weekend With The Wolverines

From The Vault
Nick Roberto leads a rush up ice in a 2-1 loss at
Michigan in October of 2013.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
A week after opening their Hockey East schedule with a three point effort against Northeastern, BU heads back on the non-conference trail, traveling to Michigan for a pair of games with the 18th ranked Wolverines.

Michigan has been disappointing so far this year. They are 4-3-1 and have yet to play a ranked opponent. UM opened their schedule with a split against Union at home, before picking up five of a possible six points against Ferris State and Michigan Tech in a three game span. Then things went downhill with two games out east. In the last weekend of October, Michigan traveled to Vermont and was blanked 3-0. The next night, they lost 3-2 at Dartmouth in just the second game of the year for the Big Green. Last weekend, they topped Arizona State 4-1 in Glendale.

BU and Michigan met last year in a two game set at Agganis. BU won game one in dramatic fashion, erasing a 2-0 third period deficit with goals from Danny O’Regan, Robbie Baillargeon and Doyle Somerby, who scored the game winner with five minutes left. The next night, Michigan rolled to 4-2 win.

Scouting The Wolverines
There are no runaway scoring leaders on Michigan's roster and the top two point getters are freshmen. Will Lookwood has eight points in eight games, scoring five goals and adding three assists. Jake Slaker has notched three goals and four assists for seven points. Luke Martin is certainly another player to keep an eye on. He was ranked #1 on the NHL Central Scouting preliminary list prior to the season, but has since fallen to #20 on ISS Hockey’s top 31 prospects. Needless to say, wherever he is ranked, the kid can play. The 6’2 defenseman from St. Louis, Missouri has one point, an assist vs ASU last weekend, in eight games played.

Michigan has had a revolving door of sorts in net. Three goalies, including two freshmen have all seen time this year. Jack LaFontaine is 1-1-1 in three appearances with a 2.28 goals against and a .936 save percentage. Hayden Lavigne is statistically the Wolverines’ best goalie, posting a .944 sv% and a 2.00 GAA. Finally, we get to Zach Nagelvoort, who is 1-1-0 in his career against BU. This year the senior from Holland, Michigan has seen time in two games and has allowed 5 goals on 72 shots.

BU Notes
-Earlier this week, the Boston Hockey Blog reported a slew of injuries for the Terriers. First, Clayton Keller is listed day to day with a lower-body injury (probably a knee) and is likely out this weekend. Nik Olsson will be available for Friday’s game and his injury is not shoulder related. He missed most of the second half of last year due to a separated shoulder. Ryan Cloonan is also “day to day” and coach Quinn is “not sure when he will be ready.”

- There was no update on Chase Phelps

- One would have to think Oskar Andrén will stay in the lineup along with Johnny McDermott and Gabriel Chabot. It will be all hands on deck this weekend with the forwards.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Monday Lookback: Discipline

Player of the Week
Clayton Keller, 2g 2a
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Friday night was the definition of a tie feeling like a loss. The Terriers had three one goal leads in the third period, but could never find a way to close out Northeastern, who always had an answer. Saturday was a bit different. BU’s penalty kill and goaltending were able to keep the game scoreless, despite taking four penalties in the opening frame. Eventually, BU scored two quick goals in the second period and unlike the night before, NU never answered.

In three home games so far, BU has yet to allow a goal at home.

Discipline was a big issue this weekend and played a huge role in the outcome of each game. As stated previously, BU took four penalties in the first period of game two, but only wound up in the box one more time for the remaining 40 minutes of the game.

While that may seem like an improvement from the night before when BU took nine penalties, coach Quinn was still not thrilled. “Five penalties is still too many. You want to stay under four and we just weren't able to do it, but the last 40 minutes we did a pretty good job staying out of the box,” said Quinn.

Let's go back to the third period of Friday’s game. With 11:05 left, Jordan Greenway scored to give BU a 3-2 lead. It was the last time Greenway was seen on the ice until the second period of Saturday’s game. He picked up a 10-minute misconduct after taunting the NU bench and sat the remainder of the game and the first period of Saturday’s contest.

It was a move that may well have cost BU a point in the standings on Saturday, but hopefully taught Greenway a valuable lesson, which will pay off down the line. Greenway is a force when he is out there. There are certain situations where his size makes him almost indefensible in the college game. He is able to create so much room for his linemates Clayton Keller and Patrick Harper that gives the trio a dynamic look when they are together.

The line showed their ability to shape the outcome of the game on Saturday night when Greenway returned and picked up assists on both goals scored by his linemates in the second period. Quinn sent a message not only to Greenway, but to the entire team. "It was addressed and people won't see that out of our team again," he added

It’s plain and simple: BU is better with Greenway on the ice and not in the box/on the bench.

Clayton Keller
Clayton Keller has done something in each game that stands out. It doesn’t always end up on the score sheet, but there is always something that shows why he was taken 7th overall in the NHL draft. This weekend, it just so happened to be on the score sheet.

Saturday night was Keller’s first of (probably) many multi-goal games. Both goals were incredibly highly skilled plays. The first, his second shorthanded goal of the season, was the most impressive of the two from a highlight reel standpoint. His second, a power play goal late in the third that at the time gave BU a 4-3 lead is what sets him apart. From the high slot, he made a quick stick handle move to gather a pass from Bobo Carpenter. All in one motion, he corralled the puck, drew a defender out of the shooting lane, and released a wrister labeled for the top corner.

It was a move that happened so fast the defender didn’t even have time to turn around before the puck was in the back of the net. NU coach Jim Madigan put it simply saying, “19’s a pretty good hockey player.”

Staying on Keller, he recorded two assists on Saturday to bring him to nine points on the year. Unfortunately, he went down late in the third period and looked to be having trouble putting weight on his leg. He did not finish the game and there were no real comments on his injury afterward.

At The Polls
For the second straight week, BU was slotted fourth in the USCHO rankings. Minnesota-Duluth was once again the unanimous number one ranked team, picking up all 50 first place votes. Denver was second, BC jumped up to third from the fifth slot and Lowell rounded out the top five.

Yes, that means Hockey East has three of the top five teams in the nation for those scoring at home or even if you’re alone.

Hockey East Scoreboard

Friday:
Boston College 6, at Maine 1
UConn 2, at UMass 2 (OT)
Vermont 1, at Lowell 3
Sacred Heart 2, at New Hampshire 2 (OT)
Mercyhurst 1, at Merrimack 5
BU 4, at Northeastern 4 (OT)

Saturday:
Vermont 2, at Lowell 4
Merrimack 2, at Providence 2 (OT)
Boston College 3, at Maine 2
Mercyhurst 0 at New Hampshire 3
Northeastern 0, at BU 3.

Blog News
I would like to announce that I have added an editor to the site. Dan Graham, a high school friend, and former teammate will be joining the staff. Dan is a junior at UMass-Amherst and is a double major in History and English. 

Photos From Saturday

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Second Period Explosion Pushes BU Past NU

It took BU a little while to get going, but after killing off four penalties, including a 48 second five on three in the first period, the Terriers erupted for three second period goals on their way to dropping Northeastern 3-0 in front of 5,562 at Agganis Arena.

Jake Oettinger was spectacular in the opening frame, stopping 13 shots. In total, he made 24 saves.

Patrick Harper celebrates after scoring his first of two goals
in the second period.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
He, along with strong penalty killing, allowed BU to get their feet under them before taking off in the second period.

Coach Quinn added, “I thought our penalty kill was very good again, obviously a big part of that is your goalie.”

The Terriers took four penalties in the opening period, but managed to only end up in the box one more time the rest of the night.

Jake Oettinger makes one of
13 saves in the first period.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Patrick Harper got BU on the board halfway through the second period when he finished off a two on one rush with Clayton Keller. Keller set the enter play up with a patient move to draw a defenseman towards him before dropping off a pass to Harper on the far side. Harper was staring at a wide-open net and didn’t miss.

32 seconds later, Kieffer Bellows made it 2-0 on a rebound goal. Bellows noted after the game, “I tried to screen the goalie and saw Charlie [McAvoy] walking across the ice, maybe he was gonna shoot, maybe not. He got it over to JFK and as soon as he shot the puck, it was just lying there and I happened to tap it in.”

Later in the frame, Harper found the back of the net for a rebound goal of his own to make it 3-0 Terriers.

Overall, Coach Quinn was pretty impressed with his team’s effort tonight; “Getting three points on the week in our league is certainly an accomplishment. I thought we overcame a lot of adversity in the first period with the penalties. It has been a continuing theme all year long. To take four in the first period, overcome it and settle it down and not take another one until the third is certainly a positive note.”

In the third, Oettinger had a skate malfunction and actually had to come out of the game for a short period of time. Connor LaCouvee made three saves in 4:12 of relief appearance.

BU heads to Michigan next weekend for a two game set with the Wolverines at Yost in Ann Arbor.

Photos From NU

Here are a few of the 500+ pictures I took last night at Matthews.


Friday, November 4, 2016

BU-NU Efforts Go For Knot

It was a classic back and forth battle between the two teams picked to finish one, two in the Hockey East standings that saw BU and Northeastern combine to score five goals in the third period. The most dramatic of course was NU forward Zach Aston-Reese’s game-tying tally with 55 seconds left in regulation.

Patrick Curry celebrates after scoring his first goal as a
Terrier.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
NU goalie Ryan Ruck had been pulled for an extra attacker with 1:30 left in the third period. NU threw everything they had at BU, and the Terriers struggled to get the puck out of the defensive zone. Eventually, the puck made its way to the point where Ryan Shea let a low shot go. Aston-Reese was able to get just enough of a tip on the shot to redirect it past BU goalie Jake Oettinger to tie the game.

BU was sitting pretty with less than 5:00 to go, when Clayton Keller ripped home his second goal of the game on the power play from the mid slot to give the Terriers a 4-3 lead.

Coach Quinn noted, “we were up 4-3 with three minutes to go and we give up that goal with less than a minute to go. We just weren’t disciplined enough."

It was BU’s inability to put NU away and immaturity allowed NU to come back time and time again. Three separate times in the third period BU had a one goal lead and could not close out the Huskies. Each time NU had an answer

Quinn added, “our number one weakness is immaturity and that cost us tonight. We have to have a better understanding of certain situations.”

The Huskies opened the scoring back in the first period on the first of two power play goals on the night. Garret Cockerill snapped off a quick wrister that beat Oettinger blocker-side high for his second goal of the year on a five on three man advantage.
Tonight was Clayton Keller's first multi-
goal game in a Terrier uniform. Here, he
scores a shorthanded goal in the first.
(Photo by Matt Dresens) 

Seconds later, on the remaining five on four power play, Clayton Keller scored an absolute highlight reel goal. He caused a turnover at the side of the NU net and was able to corral the puck before out waiting for Ruck, who was flopping to get back in position. Keller tucked in his first of two on the far side for BU’s fifth shorthanded goal of the year. The goal came just 17 seconds after Cockerill’s strike.

BU got their first lead minutes before the end of the opening frame on Patrick Curry’s first collegiate goal. Following a large scrum in front of the net, the puck came loose to the point where Brandon Hickey was able to find the stick of Curry for a redirection past Ruck.

Adam Gaudette scored a very similar goal to Cockerill’s from the first period to tie it 2-2, 2:22 into the third.

Jordan Greenway then regained the one goal lead halfway through the frame. Dante Fabbro sent in a shot for the point that Greenway was just able to get a piece of to redirect it past Ruck. Following the goal, Greenway celebrated just a little too much as he went over to the NU bench and started taunting the Huskies. He picked up a 10-minute misconduct and missed the remainder of the game.

Needless to say, Quinn was not too pleased, saying “we lost one of our best players tonight because he wanted to celebrate. I know that's the generation we live in, but that’s not what BU hockey is about.”

Less than five minutes later, Dylan Sikura once again tied the game. It was the only NU goal all night that came at even strength.

In overtime, Kieffer Bellows took a two minute slashing penalty that led to an NU shooting gallery. The Huskies teed-off on Oettinger, throwing six shots his way in the overtime period. BU did not record a shot in extra time and the game ended in a 4-4 draw.

Oettinger may not have had his best stuff tonight, but in overtime he was solid. “He’s a heck of a goalie. I’m sure he would liked to have two of those goals back, but he’s a guy we have a lot of trust in and a lot of confidence in,” said Quinn.

The two teams will do it all over again tomorrow night down at Agganis. Game time, 7pm

Weekend With The Huskies

After a scheduling quirk that saw BU have a vacant weekend to close out October, the Terriers open Hockey East play in a home and home series with the defending league champion Northeastern Huskies, tonight.
From The Vault
Former Terrier Matt Nieto rips off a shot at Matthews in March
of 2013. BU won this game 4-2.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Last season, the two teams squared off in two of the more entertaining games of the year. BU slugged out a back and forth come-from-behind 5-4 win at Agganis in Matt Grzelcyk’s first game back from offseason knee surgery. The next night, BU completed the sweep with a 4-1 win at Matthews.

NU is 3-2-2 on the year and was picked to finish second in the league standings by the Hockey East coaches, prior to the year.  The Huskies opened their season rather sluggish. They picked up just one point on opening weekend at Quinnipiac and skated to a 1-1 tie at Bentley the following weekend. Finally, NU found the win column against those same Falcons the next night with a resounding 7-3 win. From there, NU rolled over Arizona State in a two-game set and then fell to Vermont last weekend 3-2.

Scouting the Huskies
Dylan Sikura is once again off to a hot start, leading the team in scoring with 11 points (2g, 9 a). Sophomore Adam Gaudette, who played a major role in NU’s run to the Hockey East title last year, currently leads the Huskies in goals scored with five in just seven games. Gaudette has also has added five assists for ten points on the year. Zach Aston-Reese, who also has ten points, and Lincoln Griffin are other players to watch.

In goal, Ryan Ruck is the lone Husky goalie to see time in net. In seven games, he has a .904 save percentage and a 2.25 goals against. A year ago, Ruck allowed nine goals in three games against the Terriers and never found the win column.

BU Notes
- The Daily Free Press reported earlier this week that Nik Olsson will be out for tonight’s game with an upper body injury.

- Oettinger likely in net.

- I will be down at the glass taking pictures for tonight’s game. I hope to have some of the good ones up by the end of the night.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Monday Lookback: Defense Comes Up Strong

This past weekend, BU posted back to back shutouts for the first time since March 2013. While Jake Oettinger was perfect in net, Coach Quinn gave most of the praise to his team’s defense.
Jordan Greenway was named Hockey East Player of the
Week. He posted 5 points, 2 goals and 3 assists in the
two games this past weekend, Jake Oettinger was also
named Hockey East Rockey of the Week.
(Photo by Matt Dresens) 
I would not disagree with him. While I saw very little of the Sacred Heart game, Oettinger was only really tested once in the Quinnipiac game. It was a bang-bang place off a centering feed from the corner. Oettinger was well positioned and got a piece of the shot with his glove. It was easily his best stop of the night.
The BU defense was stingy, to say the least. A week ago in Denver, they allowed only 12 more shots, but the difference was where those shots were coming from. The Terriers made Quinnipiac take long range shots and blocked out the front of the net, allowing Oettinger to easily see the puck.

BU also blocked a season high 26 shots on Saturday night. So, even when QU was able to get shots off, not only were they from a long range out, but most of the time they never even got through to Oettinger.

“We have really come a long way in three weeks defensively. We have done a nice job protecting the net front. Jake [Oettinger] played really well tonight [Saturday], but for a team that had to kill twelve penalties, he didn’t have to make a lot of great saves. Boy, did we do a good job in front of him,” added Coach Quinn.
Yeah, about those penalties… It was once again a penalty-filled weekend. I’ll skip past the penalties on Friday night because I wasn’t there, but from what I have heard/read there were a lot of little scrums.
Saturday was an awfully chippy game, something that is probably expected between two top ranked teams, but only to a certain point. There was a scrum in the first period that went to video review for a solid 10 minutes to sort out who exactly did what. Also, this notion of “taking back to the rulebook” as USCHO put it is going to take some time to sort itself out.

“I know what the mandate is, but I think the referees and the players all are continuing to figure out what a penalty is. Nobody wants to see that [in reference to 19 power plays between the two teams]. The game was ruined. I’m not blaming the officials, the players need to adapt to the system and standard, but also the referees do too. It’s going to take little bit of time and all we can do is work on what we can control and not take dumb penalties,” said Quinn following the Quinnipiac game.

All of that is well and good, but I’m just waiting for the third period of the Beanpot Final (for example, insert any big game here) where basically the only penalty called is murder. If the referees are consistent, that’s all you can ask for. Just don’t have a “mandate and a standard” for the regular season and bury the whistles when the games start to mean a whole lot more.

At The Polls
BU slid up four slots in the USCHO rankings from 8th to 4th. North Dakota was, for the second week in a row, unanimously atop the rankings. They received all 50 first place votes. Minnesota Duluth was second, Denver third and Lowell closed out the top five. Hockey East had a total of six teams in the top 20.

Hockey East Scoreboard

Wednesday:
UConn 2, at Quinnipiac 5

Friday:
Colorado College 1, at Boston College 4
Arizona State 2, at Northeastern 5
Army 2, at UMass 3
Clarkson 3, at Providence 3
American International 2, at UConn 2
St. Lawrence 2, at Lowell 5
Colgate 3, at Merrimack 4
Maine 3, at Miami 3
Penn State 3, at Notre Dame 3
Vermont 4, at Nebraska-Omaha 4
Sacred Heart 0, at BU 7.

Saturday:
Arizona State 1, at Northeastern 6
Clarkson 4, at Lowell 3
Colorado College 4, at New Hampshire 3
Boston College 6, at Holy Cross 1
Colgate 2, at Merrimack 5
Maine 0, at Miami 5
Penn State 3, at Notre Dame 2 (OT)
St. Lawrence, 3 at Providence 6
Vermont 5, at Nebraska-Omaha 2
Quinnipiac 0, at BU 3

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Penalty Kill Powers BU Past Quinnipiac

Jake Oettinger needed just 46
saves to shutout both Sacred
Heart and Quinnipiac
this weekend.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Jake Oettinger posted his second shutout in as many nights, turning aside 22 shots as Jordan Greenway, Bobo Carpenter and Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson provided the offense in BU’s 3-0 win over Quinnipiac in front of 5,555 at Aggains Arena, tonight.

Penalties were once again the main focus. The teams combined to have 19 power plays, yet neither team found the back of the net on the man advantage.

Despite all the power play time for the Bobcats and numerous extended five on three three opportunities, BU’s defense held QU to very few grade A chances.

Logan Smith offered the one point blank bid that Oettinger did have to stand tall on. A centering pass from the corner found Smith all alone in the low slot for a bang-bang play. Smith got good wood on the shot, but Oettinger fought it off with his glove to preserve the shutout. It was the first back-to-back shutouts for BU since March of 2013, when Sean Maguire blanked Merrimack and Northeastern in a row.

Jordan Greenway got BU on the board 6:11 into the first period. JFK made a strong move to cut to the middle, before dishing a pass to Greenway in the slot. From there, Greenway got off a quick backhand shot that beat QU goalie Andre Shortridge blockers side. It was his third goal of the season.

Bobo Carpenter doubled the lead in the second on a two on one rush with Patrick Harper. Harper made a very patient play, drawing the lone defender towards him, before slipping a pass over to Carpenter on the near side. Carpenter was all alone and had nothing but net to shoot at.

JFK added a shorthanded empty net goal to seal the deal with less than a minute left.

It was a particularly scrappy game from both teams, but that is expected with two highly competitive programs.

BU’s penalty kill was outstanding. They limited QU to the parameter and when the Bobcats were able to get shots off BU blocked a good chunk of them. Quinnipiac coach Rand Pecknold described it as “eating pucks.” BU blocked a season-high 26 shots. Doyle Somerby lead the team with four.

Coach Quinn said “our effort never stopped and there were a lot of obstacles tonight. We faced three five on threes and a lot of those obstacles we planted ourselves, but we really gutted this win out.”

BU will have next weekend off before facing Northeastern in a home and home the following weekend.

QU Comes To Town

Former Terrier Kevin Duane, who
transferred to Quinnipiac last season
will make his first appearance back at
Agganis since 2014, tonight.
(Photo by Matt Dresens) 
After blanking Sacred Heart 7-0 last night in their home opener, BU has a quick turnaround as they host Quinnipiac in just the second meeting all-time between the two schools.

Last year, BU handed Qpac their first and only loss of the first semester with a 4-1 win in Hamden. Quinnipiac made it all the way to the National Title Game a year ago, but lost 5-1 to North Dakota in the championship game. While this year’s squad doesn’t return everyone from their playoff run last year, It will still be a solid test for the Terriers tonight.

So far this year, QU is 3-1-1. They opened the season with a three point weekend against Northeastern, before splitting with Maine in Orono in two overtime games. This past Wednesday they dropped UConn 5-2 at home. In a weird scheduling quirk for the Bobcats, their first seven games of the 2017 season are all against Hockey East teams.

Scouting the Bobcats
Travis St. Denis and Sam Anas, along with goaltender Michael Garteig are QU’s main departures from last year. Anas, despite playing through a devastating shoulder injury for most of the season, racked up 50 points, including a goal against BU. Garteig was a wall in net posting a .924 save percentage and picking up 32 wins.

This year, Tim Clifton will be looked upon to try and pick up some of the slack. Last year, he finished with 43 points and so far has found the back of the net three times this year. Andrew Taverner has also potted three goals and has added two assists. The two have five points each in five games played.

Replacing Garteig between the pipes is Senior Chris Truehl. In four games played, he has a .920 save percentage to go along with a 2.43 goals against.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Sacred Heart Preview

Tonight, BU opens their home schedule as they face Sacred Heart for the first time in program history.

Sacred Heart is usually found at the bottom of the Atlantic Hockey standings, but have made strides this past year. They used to be sentenced to the very unfriendly and dreary confines of the Milford Ice Plex as their home barn. It was less than ideal rink for a Division 1 school and barely acceptable for high school games. Finally this year, the Pioneers moved to a first class AHL stadium in Bridgeport.

As for their current record, SHU is 1-2-1 on the year. They opened their season with a 4-0 loss to Army, but then rebounded to drop Merrimack 2-1 in North Andover. Last weekend, Sacred Heart again lost to Army 3-0 and then tied Union 4-4 at home.

Scouting the Pioneers
Evan Jasper and Justin Danforth are the early front runners in offensive production for the Pioneers. They both have three points, with Jasper leading the team in goals scored with two.

In goal, senior Brett Magnus has played all four games and has posted a 2.49 goals against with a .910 save percentage.

BU Notes
Coach Quinn said earlier this week that junior Chase Phelps will be available this week. There was no indication whether he would actually crack the lineup.

Quotes
Assistant SHU coach Scott Mcdougall on average age of college hockey players, "Our goal is to beat Boston University... We hope our 24 year olds can beat their 18 year olds."

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Denver Lookback

Kieffer Bellows scored his
first collegiate goal on
Saturday night as BU lost
3-1.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
It’s been a busy week over here at the blog headquarters, so I’ll keep the revision of last weekend to a minimum.

BU lost not one, but two games at Denver and really did not look good doing it. There were moments where their pure skill was on display, but other times their inexperience showed.

Penalties were again a big issue. Denver had 14 power plays in two games, but only scored twice on the man advantage. While at the end of the day that doesn’t look horrible, penalty killing obviously takes a lot out of a team.

The other negative was the goaltending. I'm not one to sit here and blame everything on goalies. Far from it… but Jake Oettinger can’t give up the goals like the first one he allowed in game two. A bad angle shot from far out that went up over his shoulder is inexcusable, especially in that type of low scoring game. Granted, Kieffer Bellows scored off an equally horrendous angle later in the game to tie it. The goaltending needs to be more solid than it was.

Oettinger, like the other eight freshmen are going to take time to adjust to the college game. I think especially for Oettinger, who is just 17, it might take a little longer. It is certainly a lot to ask of a 17-year-old freshman to step in and take over the starting job in net.

Look, not all the kids are going to be Jack Eichel. I don’t care how high and how many first round picks the team has, it's going to take time to adjust. Look how dominant Colin Wilson was in the second half of his freshman year. It took him time. He developed and became an absolute force in college hockey. Put the panic button away, people. It’s a work in progress that ends in April, not the second weekend in October.

Ok, enough with the negative…

While it may take some time for the kids to fully adapt to college hockey, they certainly have some skill. There is no denying that. BU’s first goal of the weekend was an absolute thing of beauty. Patrick Harper made a strong push up the far side, before posting up at the hash marks along the boards. From there, he dumped off a pass that was a bit behind JFK. The Swedish forward made a nifty move to corral the puck behind him, drag it through his legs and then slide a pass through the crease to Brandon Hickey on the near side. Hickey one-timed the pass into the back of the net to cap off a spectacular power play goal.

Later in the game, Clayton Keller put on full display why he was drafted 7th overall with an impressive shorthanded goal. Denver attempted a centering pass from below the goal-line that was deflected past it’s intended target and hopped over Will Butcher’s stick in the slot. Keller, who was a good three strides behind Butcher in the BU zone, caught and passed the Denver captain before the redline. In full stride, Keller was able to pick up the loose puck, stay on his feet as Butcher made one last-ditch effort to catch him by diving and almost tripping him before he broke in free. Once in alone, Keller made quick work of Denver goalie Tenner Jaillet with a swift backhanded five-hole finish.

Overall, I think the weekend has the potential to be a learning experience for the team. They now know they can’t just show up and expect to win. This team will get better. They have too much talent not to.

Saturday, October 15, 2016

Denver Bends But Doesn't Break, Holds Off Terrier Comeback

Jordan Greenway scored his first goal of
the 2017 season in the third period.
(Photo by Matt Dresens) 
In their first real test of the year, BU struggled to stay out of the box and saw Denver take a 3-0 midway through the second before clawing back, only to fall 4-3 in the Mile High City.

Penalties were a major problem for the Terriers in this one. Denver had seven power play opportunities, including four in the first period. It was a tough way start the game for the Terriers and on their third power play chance of the opening frame, Denver finally made BU pay.

Matt Marcinew ripped home his first of the year from the point with less than three minutes left in period one. Denver then scored two goals in 42 seconds to open up a 3-0 lead 4:44 into the second period.

First, Troy Terry potted his first goal of the season off a feed from Michael Davies that beat Jake Oettinger (31 saves) short side. Not long after, Evan Janssen banged home his first of two on the night to extend the Pioneers' lead.

Brandon Hickey got BU on the board with a power-play goal of his own just under halfway through the frame. The puck came to him at the near side circle and he was able to wire a shot past Taner Jailet (23 saves) to get BU back in the game. Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson and Patrick Harper picked up assists on the play.

Minutes later, Jansson let go a quick wrister from the far side dot off a nice passing play by Tyson McLellan and Logan O’Connor that beat Oettinger upstairs to make it 4-1.

At this point in the night, my viewing experience came to a crashing halt, as T’s Pub transformed into a dance nightclub and the game was shut off. This was all despite the fact there were seven people (my two friends and I and four guys at the bar) in the entire place, who were less than interested in the blaring hip hop music and were not about to hit the dance floor.

Anway, as I flipped over to the Hockey East Scoreboard page, I noticed Jordan Greenway scored 2:47 into the third to make it a one-goal game. After I saw that he scored, I pulled up the BU radio call on my phone (what a time to be alive!) and was able to hear Clayton Keller make it a one-goal game on a shorthanded breakaway goal.

That was as close as BU would get.

The two teams will wrap up the series tomorrow night. Game Time 9:00est.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Weekend With The Pioneers

This weekend, BU embarks on a two game trip to the Rocky Mountains to face the Denver Pioneers, the team that ended BU’s season in the West Regional in St. Paul last year.
From The Vault
Matt Lane rips off a shot in the second period of last year's
West Regional meeting between the Terriers and Pioneers
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
The Pioneers stumbled out of the gate last weekend in the Icebreaker Invitational. As tournament hosts, Denver lost both games and finished fourth. On opening night, DU lost 3-2 to Ohio State and then fell 3-1 to Boston College in the consolation game.

To add injury to insult, the Pioneers lost one of their top players in the process. Dylan Gambell suffered an upper body injury during the Icebreaker and will miss four to six weeks. Gambrell was second on the team in scoring as a freshman a year ago, posting 47 points, including a goal and an assist vs in two games against BU.

Scouting The Pioneers
Denver was ranked 3rd in the pre season USCHO poll and have since slipped to 10th. Denver lost two huge components to their team from 2016 that made it to the Frozen Four in Tampa. Danton Heinen (now with the Bruins) and Trevor Moore racked up a combined 92 points last year.

The good news for Denver is that Will Butcher returned for his senior year. Butcher, a 5th round pick by Colorado in 2013 posted 9 goals and 23 assists from the point in 2016. He scored once last weekend as well. In last year’s meeting at Agganis, Butcher notched a goal and two assist in a 6-5 overtime loss. Butcher’s first of two goals in the NCAA tournament last March against the Terriers proved to be the game winner.

Other players to watch include Troy Terry, Henrik Borgstöm and Liam Finlay.

In goal, BU will probably see both Evan Cowley and Tanner Jaillet. The two split the Icebreaker games already this season. Last year, Jaillet went 17-5-5 with a 2.27 goals against and a .922 save percentage. He did allow 3 goals on 18 shots to BU last Halloween and was yanked after 27:09 of action. Cowley was 8-5-1 in 2016 with a .929svp and a 2.07GAA.

BU Notes.
Coach Quinn said earlier this week that both Ryan Cloonan and Chase Phelps “are available” this weekend.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Pictures From Colgate, News And Notes

Tonight I finally had a chance sit down and upload the 900+ pictures I took at Colgate this past weekend. I'll spare you the whole collection. Here's about 60 of the best.

Like I said a few weeks ago, coverage will be a bit different this year. Because I was taking pictures, it made actually watching and analyzing the action quite difficult, so there will be no Monday break down this week.


At The Polls
BU shot up two slots from fourth in the USCHO poll to second. They also picked up five first place votes. North Dakota was one with 45 first place votes. Quinnipiac dropped from two to three, Duluth was four and Notre Dame rounded out the top five.

Around Hockey East
Thursday: BU rolled past the National Team Development Program 8-2 at home.

Friday: Boston College fell to Air Force in the opening round of the Icebreaker Invitational in Denver... Vermont down Clackson in Postdam 5-2... Maine Skated past RPI 5-1 at Houston Field House... Northeastern and Quinnipiac tied 2-2 in Hamden...UMass blanked Colorado College 3-0 at home... Providence one-upped Miami-Ohio 4-3 at home... UConn destroyed Alabama Huntsville 6-0 in Alabama... Lowell and Minnesota Duluth tied 4-4 in Duluth... Notre Dame obliterated Arizona State 9-2 at Family Arena.

Saturday: UConn again shutout Huntsville, 4-0... New Hampshire was dropped by Bentley 5-1 at the Whitt... Maine finished the sweep at RPI with a 4-2 win... Quinnipiac grabbed game two from Northeastern 5-2... Colorado College rebounded to blow out UMass 7-4 at the Mullins Center... Lowell and Duluth again skated to a tie, 1-1... Notre Dame swept Arizona State, 4-2... Miami managed a split with Providence with a 2-1 win... Clarkson got back at Vermont, defeating the Catamounts 3-2... Boston College beat Denver 3-1 in the Icebreaker Consolation game... BU upended Colgate 6-1 in Hamilton.

Sunday: Merrimack lost to Sacred Heart 2-1 at Lawler.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

BU Skates Past Colgate In Season Opener

If the exhibition games showed anything, it was that BU could score. Tonight was no different as they rolled to a 6-1 win at Colgate’s brand new Class of ’65 Arena. 

Nick Olsson and Nick Roberto celebrate Roberto's
shorthanded goal in the first period.
(Photo by Matt Dresens) 
After being held in check for most of the first period, Patrick Harper got the BU offense rolling, as he picked up right where he left off in the exhibition games. Harper potted his first official goal 15:11 into the first period on a 5 on 3 power play. Bobo Carpenter picked up an assist on the play. The goal came after BU had to kill a full 2:00 of Colgate 5 on 3.

Less than two minutes later, Nick Roberto scored a shorthanded goal to make it 2-0 Terriers heading into the second frame. Roberto picked up the puck and drove wide, creating a two on one with Nick Olsson, who fired off a shot. Roberto crashed the back post, found the loose rebound and stuffed it home. It was his first goal since February 27th, 2015.
Clayton Keller pulls back the bow and
arrow after scoring his first collegiate
goal.
(Photo by Matt Dresens) 

Harper scored BU’s different style goal less than three minutes into the second. With the goalie pulled for an extra attacker on a delayed penalty, Clayton Keller made a strong cross-ice feed to Harper who was open back door. Harper wasted little time shoveling a shot into the top corner past Charlie Finn for his second of the night.


Later in the period, Brandon Hickey slashed Tyler Penner on a breakaway. Penner was awarded a penalty shot and was stopped on a short side attempt by Jake Oettinger. Oettinger made 29 saves, including 13 in third period.

Coach Quinn noted that after Oettinger made a few big saves at the end of the second, the team started the third period much better off,


He also said, “We were opportunistic and capitalized on chances.”

Tommy Kelley netted his first goal of the season midway through the third to make it 4-0. Gabriel Chabot set up the whole play with a wonderful pass to Kelley on the back side.

Less than two minutes later, Clayton Keller put home his first goal as a Terrier in a scrum in front of the net. Brandon Hickey and Kieffer Bellows had the assists. 19 second later, Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson scored a rebound goal to make it 6-0. 
Jake Oettinger stops Tyler Penner on a penalty shot in the
second period.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Colgate broke up Oettinger’s shutout bid with less than ten minutes to play on Mike Panowyk’s first goal of the season. Had he blanked the Raiders, Oettinger would have been the first goalie to record a shutout in his first career start since Sean Fields in 2000.

BU will head to Denver next week for a two-game set with the Pioneers.

I had a chance to sit by the glass and take a bunch of pictures tonight. I hope to post a few more in the coming days. 

Friday, October 7, 2016

Season Opener

Game one of the regular season gets underway tomorrow night in Hamilton, New York as BU takes on Colgate.

Last weekend, Colgate unveiled their brand new Class of 1965 Arena with a 2-2 tie to Army. Class of ’65 replaces Starr Rink, the long time home of Raider hockey. The Colgate University class of 1965 gave over $22 million to the university to construct the new arena. Tomorrow night’s game will be just the second game every played in the new barn.

Scouting the Raiders
Colgate is not projected to have a strong year. They finished 11th out of 12 teams in the ECAC coaches poll earlier this month. They lost their four leading scorers from a year ago in Tyson and Tylor Spink, Mike Borkowski and Darcy Murphy to graduation.

Tim Harrison represents Colgate’s top returning scorer from 2016. In 36 games played, Harrison racked up 8 goals and 9 assists for 17 points. He has already found the scoresheet this season, netting a goal against Army on opening night. Jake Kulevich and Derek Freeman are also notable returners.

Colgate does return their starting goalie from last season. Charlie Finn posted an .899 save percentage and a 3.28 GAA with a 10-23-1 record in 2016. He made 25 saves against Army a week ago.

BU Notes
Coach Quinn said last night he was not sure who he was going to start in goal. My guess would be Jake Oettinger. Lines should look the same with a few tweaks, maybe.

The Last Time They Met…
November 28, 2014 at Agganis. The then top-ranked Terriers knocked off the ninth-ranked Raiders 5-2 behind two goals from Evan Rodrigues.

Most Notable Meeting…
1990 Frozen Four, National Semifinals. Second-seeded Colgate advanced to the National Championship game with a 3-2 win over BU in Detroit. Colgate lost 7-3 in the finals against Wisconsin.

Thursday, October 6, 2016

BU Rolls Past USA-18's

BU’s offense picked up right where it left off on Saturday night as they made quick work of the USA U18 team tonight at Aggains.

Patrick harper continued his blazing hot start to the exhibition season with another hat trick. Bobo Carpenter also added a pair of goals, while Patrick Curry, Date Fabbro and Clayton Keller all found the back of the net once.
Jake Oettinger steered aside just 3 shots (he only faced 4) in 30:32 of action. Connor LaCouvee made
16 saves and allowed one goal in the half of action he saw.

Harper started the scoring less than five minutes in. Two minutes later, Curry tipped home a well-placed shot from the point by Chad Krys to make it 2-0.

Carpenter’s first goal put the Terriers up 3-0, before Josh Noris got the NTDP on the board with a shorthanded goal in the dying seconds of the first period.

Harper picked up his second of the night just 24 seconds into the second frame. Less than a minute later, Keller slammed home a shorthanded goal on a two on one rush with Jordan Greenway. Harper finished off the hat trick with a wrister through a crowd later in the period.
Team USA notched their own shorthanded goal with less than two minutes left in the period. Jacob Tortora finished off a breakaway goal with a slippery backhand that snuck through LaCouvee’s legs. That made it 6-2 Terrier heading to the third.

Carpenter banged home his second of the night 15 seconds into the third off an unreal through the legs pass from Harper below the goal-line. Dante Fabbro rounded out the scoring on the power play midway through the period.

BU will travel to Colgate on Saturday to open the regular season.