Saturday, February 25, 2017

BU Bucks Notre Dame, Shares League Title

For the first time in league history, there will be a three-way tie atop the Hockey East standings after BU topped Notre Dame 4-1 in the Irish’s final regular season game in Hockey East play.
Captain Doyle Somerby with the Hockey East regular
season trophy after the game.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
“To share the league championship, the regular season is a great accomplishment for our guys,” said Quinn. “To finish the season tied for the most points in the league says an awful lot about out leadership and our seniors. It’s been a lot of fun coaching this group so far and I’m really proud of the way we finished the season. The sky was falling if you listen to everyone in the hockey world and we have dusted ourselves off over the last two weekends. I think we got our game to another level.

It was again a slow start for the Terriers as Notre Dame took a 1-0 lead on Mike O’Leary’s second goal of the year. Jake Oettinger was able to stop the initial shot by Dawson Cook, but O’Leary was there to clean up the rebound, just squeezing it in behind the goaltender and have it bleed over the goal line.

ND had a slight edge in shots after one at 13-11, and midway through the second it again looked like Cal Peterson was going stand on his head.

BU finally broke through on their struggling power play midway through the second. Ryan Cloonan let a shot go and Keiffer Bellows picked up a loose puck and jammed it past Peterson down low. It was a power play goal and Bellows’ fifth point in his last five games.

With 3:30 left in the frame, John MacLoud unloaded a blast from the far point that beat Peterson up over his shoulder for just his second goal of the year. Ryan Cloonan worked the puck out the corner and was able to line MacLoud up for a one-timer right inside the blue line.

The Terriers continued to hold momentum going into the third and it led to Clayton Keller’s first of two on the night. Dante Fabbro wristed a shot from the near point and from the mid slot, Keller got a stick on the puck and tipped it past Peterson.

Clayton Keller celebrates after scoreing
his second goal of the game.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Keller later scored on a roof job from the bottom of the left circle to round out the scoring. It was his 19th of the year.

Jake Oettinger finished with 40 saves, 14 of which came in the third.

This is the 13th time BU has finished with at least a share the league title.

As the tie breakers all shake out, BU will be the second seed in the Hockey East Quarterfinals. Lowell is one, BC three.

Unlike the night before, BU was able to finish on their opportunities and even cashed in on a power play rebound goal. Those were two issues after last night’s game. The Terriers also did a better job of getting pucks to the net and pucks through traffic.

“If you look at the goals, we got people to the net,” added Quinn. “I think we had a little bit more of an edge. We get to the net, but we are there because the coach tells us to go there, there's a difference between getting there and wanting to be there.”

“We got in his face,” said Doyle Somerby on the traffic in front of Cal Peterson. “There were a lot of scrums around the net, I don’t think he felt real comfortable in there. It always helps when you add some skill. It was a pretty good showing on the offensive side of things.”

All in all, it was much better effort from the team and BU is certainly on the right trajectory headed into the playoffs. BU could face anyone of the following: UNH, Merrimack, UConn or Maine

Friday, February 24, 2017

Irish Take Game One Thriller

In one of the more exciting pure hockey games this year, Notre Dame staved off a furious third period from the Terriers to capture a 3-1 win in a thrilling, up and down, back and forth affair in front of 4,562 at Agganis Arena

“It was just a great hockey game,” added coach Quinn. “It’s obviously disappointing with the result, but there's a lot to love about our game tonight. Two great goalies, their guy made some big saves, our guy made some big saves. the difference in the game was I thought we gave them two gift goals. You just can’t do that in a game of this magnitude.”

Notre Dame took a 1-0 lead on Jake Evans’ 11th goal of the year. From the bottom of the left circle, Evans beat Jake Oettinger (23 saves) up over his left shoulder for his first of two on the night

ND continued to control the pace in the first, outshooting BU 10-5. Strong neutral zone play by the Irish limited BU’s offensive chances, but with less than four minutes to play in the opening frame, BU tied things up. Clayton Keller wheeled around from the near hash along the boards all the way up top to the center point, before letting a shot go. Standing in the slot, Patrick Harper deflected the shot down, through ND goalie Cal Peterson’s legs. It was his third goal in the last two games.

The second offered a much more open style of hockey. Both teams traded chances and controlled the play for stretches. Both Peterson and Oettinger offered up some juicy rebounds, but no one was able to cash in.

The Irish took a 2-1 lead with less than two minutes left in the period. Tory Dello threw a shot on goal from the top of the circle and Ben Ostlie potted his first of the year from the edge of the crease. It was initially waved off for goalie interference, but after further review, it was determined Bobo Carpenter had pushed Mike O’Leary into Oettinger and so the goal stood.

With BU in a full on press to get the equalizer, Charlie McAvoy attempted to keep a puck in at the point and it resulted in a two on one the other way. After entering the zone, Anders Bjork slid a pass over to Jake Evans at the dot who beat Oettinger off the near post and in.

BU had a ton of chances that were just sitting in the crease waiting to be hit home, but ND was strong out in front and was able to make the necessary clears. Peterson was stout in the third, making 23 saves in the final frame.

“There was a lot of scrums in front of the net,” mentioned captain Doyle Somerby. “We like the fact that we went with grit in the last 10-15 minutes, actually the whole third period for that matter. We made life difficult for Peterson and hopefully we can bring that tomorrow for a full 60.”

“He’s very quick,” said Quinn about Cal Peterson. “He’s strong, doesn’t waste a lot of movement, you know, he’s just a great goalie. He’s been a great goalie for a long time."

The Terriers were most successful when they could get speed through the neutral zone and set up a forecheck. When they had long spurts of offensive zone time, it was because of strong play down below the goal line and winning battles.

The game ended with some serious chippy play. It is certainly something to look for as both teams will battle it out again tomorrow night.

Depending on other results tonight, BU can still capture at least a share of the league title with a win tomorrow and a BC loss against Lowell. Notre Dame can win the league with a win tomorrow night and a BC loss.

Weekend With The Irish

After a BC loss last night, BU now controls their own destiny when it comes to earning at least a share of the Hockey East title. Regardless of what BC does in the second game with Lowell this weekend, with a sweep of Notre Dame, BU would tie BC and win the tiebreaker based on head-to-head record with the Eagles.
Charlie McAvoy scored the game winner at Notre Dame
last February in BU's first ever win in South Bend.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
As for other scenarios, Notre Dame can still win the league with a sweep of BU. Lowell can also share the league title with another win over BC and BU picking up two or fewer points vs ND, but not with an Irish sweep.

It's the dream for schedule makers to have the last weekend come down to this. The top four teams vying for a league title all playing each other. Stick tap to Hockey East on this one.

Notre Dame is unbeaten in their last six games with a 4-0-2 record, picking up four points at Maine sandwiched between three-point weekends with Providence and Vermont at home. BU has traditionally struggled with the Irish, winning just twice since the first meeting in October 2009. In 11 total meetings, the Irish hold a 7-2-2 record. Last year the two teams split a pair of games in South Bend with BU winning 3-2 in game one and getting blanked 1-0 on night two.

While this weekend has huge league implications, there are certainly PairWise points on the line as well. BU is currently sixth and has the potential to possibly grab a number one seed with a deep Hockey East tournament run. Notre Dame, on the other hand, is right on the tournament bubble at 16. If the field was picked today, the Irish would be looking at fairways and greens rather than a trip to regionals.

Regardless of the outcome, this will be the final regular season weekend for the Irish in Hockey East, as they are jumping to the Big 10 next season.

Scouting the Irish
Bruins prospect Anders Bjork is far and away the top scorer for the Fighting Irish. In 31 games played, the junior out of Mequon, Wisconsin has 19 goals and 24 assists, leading the team in both categories. Behind him is sophomore Andrew Oglevie, who has racked up 34 points by way of 18 goals and 16 assists. Other players to watch include Jordan Gross, Jake Evens, and Bobby Nardella.

In goal, Cal Peterson is one of the best, holding an 18-9-5 record with a .926 save percentage and a 2.09 goals against average. In four games against BU, Peterson is 2-1-1, allowing seven goals with a .952 save percentage and one shutout.

BU Notes
- The Boston Hockey blog said earlier this week that Brandon Hickey will be out this weekend. He is still recovering from a lower-body injury suffered in the Beanpot vs Harvard. He will likely be back for the Hockey East quarterfinals.

- Doyle Somerby will back on defense

- Oettinger in net.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Third Period Outburst Lands BU Back In Win Column

Keiffer Bellows and Chase Phelps
celebrate after Phelps scored in the
second period.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
After battling to a 4-4 come-from-behind tie last night at Agganis, BU once again found themselves facing a multi-goal deficit in the second period of tonight’s eventual 8-4 win that saw seven different Terriers score at the Whittemore Center.

“Our morale and our psyche was pretty fragile,” said Quinn. “Last night getting down 2-0, tying it, then going down 4-2, then battling back to get a gutsy point. And then tonight, obviously we get behind 1-0, behind 3-1, tying up, going down 4-3, making 4-4 right before the end of the second. You know, playing the third period that we did again tonight. To do what we did says an awful lot about that group of guys in that locker room.”  

Looking at a 4-4 game at the start of the third, Patrick Harper scored his second of the night just 3:30 into the final frame. Charlie McAvoy made a strong rush up the far side before dishing to Harper in the slot, where the freshman buried the eventual game winner.

Three minutes later, Kieffer Bellows potted his second goal in three games to add some much-needed insurance. From behind the goal line, Bellows was able to wrap in a bank shot, off UNH goalie Danny Tirone and in.

“We’ve had a lot of good third periods,” mentioned Quinn. “I think under the circumstances, that was the best third period this season. We needed something good to happen. Last night we had something good happen, but we didn’t get the win. Tonight we needed something good to happen and get the win and that’s what happened.

Way back in the first, UNH opened the scoring on Jason Salvaggio’s first of two, midway through the opening period. Minutes later, John MacLoud netted his first of the year from the left point to tie the game 1-1. Just as BU was getting some sort of momentum, the nation’s leading scoring Tyler Kelleher ripped home his 20th goal of the year on the power play to give the Cats a 2-1 lead headed to the second.

2:59 into the third, Salvaggio added his second on a rebound to Jake Oettinger’s right.

Before the Terrier offense could really kick into gear, it continued to draw from unexpected sources. Chase Phelps went post and in from the left hash mark on Tirone after a great feed from Keiffer Bellows. It was his second goal of the year.

Roughly two minutes later, Patrick Harper collected his own rebound out of a scrum in front and tied the game on his first of two. It was his 10th of the year.

Just as BU looked to have crawled out of the cellar (once again) UNH answered. Justin Fergona and Ara Nazarian broke in two on one. From the top of the circle, Fergona slid a pass over to Nazarian, who toasted Oettinger blocker side.

Dante Fabbro scored the game’s most pivotal goal with less than two minutes left in the second period. At the top of the far circle, Fabbro snuck in a low warm-burner of a shot past Tirone to knot the game 4-4.

Bobo Carpenter notched his 13th of the year at 16:27 of the third period and Clayton Keller added an empty-net goal to round out the scoring.

This was BU’s first win at the Whitt since November 2012, when UNH was ranked number one in the country.

With a BC tie against Vermont, BU is two points behind the Eagles with two games to play. BU will face Notre Dame at home for a pair, while BC will square off with Lowell in a home and home next weekend.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Weekend With The Wildcats

BU enters this weekend’s series with the UNH Wildcats looking to right the ship after a less than stellar outing in the Beanpot Final against Harvard on Monday night. The Terriers currently sit alone in second place in Hockey east, but only one point clear of both Notre Dame and Lowell. BU is still three points behind first place BC with just four games to play.
From the Vault
Former Terrier goalie Grant Rollheiser stops one of 41 UNH
shots in a 4-2 BU win on November 20th, 2010.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
New Hampshire on the other hand, is tied with Merrimack for 7th with 17 points. Remember, the top four teams in the league get a bye to the quarterfinals, while the bottom eight play a “play-in round.” Seeds 5-8 will get home ice in round one and UNH is right on that line.

The Wildcats are 12-14-4 on the year, but have won just one of their last nine games. The sole win came last weekend, a 4-2 decision at Vermont on Friday night. Prior to that win, you have to go all the way back to January 12th to find the last UNH win. In that span of futility, New Hampshire was shutout 3-0 by both Notre Dame and Providence, and steam rolled 6-4 and 8-2 by BC and Lowell, respectively.

Last year, BU took three points from UNH via a 3-3 tie in Durham and a 3-2 win on Comm Ave.

Scouting the Wildcats
Unsurprisingly, Tyler Kelleher is dominating the score sheet for UNH. The sophomore from Longmeadow, who racked up 46 points a year ago, has already surpassed that amount. Coming into this weekend, Kelleher has 51 points, 20 more than anyone else on the roster. In 30 games played, Kelleher has notched 18 goals and 33 assists, good for second in the nation behind only Northeastern's Zach Aston-Reese. His 33 assists are the most in the county, three ahead of Union's Spence Foo. Michael McNicholas is second on the team with 31 points by way of 10 goals and 21 assists. Look for defenseman Matias Cleland to get involved with the offense this weekend. The senior defenseman is third on the team in scoring with 30 points, 28 of those being assists.

In goal, Danny Tirone is 12-12-4 with a .911 save percentage and a 2.80 goals against. He has played 92% of the minutes in the UNH net this year and will almost certainly start both games this weekend.

BU Notes
The Daily Free Press reported earlier today that Brandon Hickey will be out on Friday with a “lower body injury on his right leg.”

Jake Oettinger will start in net.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Harvard Out-Works BU For Beanpot

It’s becoming a recurring theme: the sticks, gloves, and helmets scattered across the ice at TD Garden following the conclusion of a championship game belong to teams that are not the Terriers. Tonight, BU fell 6-3 to Harvard in the Beanpot final as the Crimson skated away with their first title since Bill Clinton was in office.
Both benches react at the final buzzer.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
Harvard dominated from the jump. The Crimson outshot the Terriers 46-17, starting out 18-2 in the opening frame.

Harvard struck first on Nathan Krusko’s first of two on the power play with 4:50 left in the period.

BU finally showed some life, scoring a pair of goals less than five minutes into the second. First, Kieffer Bellows found a loose puck in the crease by the side of Harvard goalie Merrick Madsen and buried his fifth of the year. Bobo Carpenter and Brandon Hickey picked assists on the power play goal.

Minutes later, Clayton Keller tipped home a John MacLoud point shot to give BU a 2-1 lead. It was Keller’s first of two on the night.

“From start to finish were fighting an uphill battle,” said Quinn “We got the 2-1 lead and I thought the first eight minutes of the second were the best eight minutes we played all night. We had a 2-1 lead and then I thought they started taking the momentum back. At the end of the day, this is a game of want and, oh boy, did they want it more than we did. They outskated us. They out hit us. They out competed us. They only thing they didn’t do is out goaltend us.”

Jake Oettinger made 40 saves and picked up the Eberly Award for the top goaltender in the tournament based on save percentage.

Harvard was able to swing the momentum back in their favor in a huge way in the final half of the period. First, Brandon Hickey’s night was cut short when Luke Esposito crunched him with a hard check along the scorer's table. Hickey was slow to get up and never returned after getting up slowly and putting no weight on his right leg.

Not long after, it was Esposito who found the back of the net off a tip from a well-placed Clay Anderson shot to tie things up.

Before the period ended, Nathan Krusko potted his second of the game on a delayed penalty. Dante Fabbro was called for hooking and then Charlie McAvoy delivered a brutal leg check on Alexander Kerfoot along the boards to set Harvard up with their second five on three on the evening.

30 seconds into the third, it was Kerfoot scoring the eventual game winner on Harvard's second five on three goal of the game.

“It's disappointing in a lot of ways," added Quinn. “It certainly wasn’t anything we expected. Penalties obviously killed us. You can’t go down five on three for that length of time against a team like that. Once we did that we just really put ourselves behind the eight-ball. It’s 2-2 in the middle of the second period and the whole momentum changes.”

Bruins prospect Ryan Donato made it 5-2 on a great individual effort with 7:13 left. 27 seconds later, Keller got the goal right back on his second of the night. Off the initial rush, his shot was blocked, but Keller stayed with it, picked up the loose puck in the slot and beat Madson down low. It was his 16th of the year, and that was close as BU would get.

Adam Fox added an empty-netter to seal the deal.

As stated before, it was Harvard’s first Beanpot since 1993. It marks the first time since that year that a team not named BU or BC has taken home the title. Also, 1993 marks the last time Boston College has finished last in the tournament, and that happened again tonight, as Northeastern won the consolation game 4-2.

Coming into this game, the last three Beanpots Harvard won came in the year when a new president was inaugurated. You can add this year to that list as well.

BU continues league play this weekend with a home and home with the UNH Wildcats.

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Beanpot Final Preview -- Harvard

For the first time since 1998, BU and Harvard will square off in the Beanpot final, Monday night. This is  Harvard’s first appearance in the championship game in nearly a decade, having to go back to 2008 to find the last time the Crimson played in the late game on the second Monday in February. That was a 6-5 overtime loss to Boston College in 2008. Harvard is the last non BU/BC winner, taking home the 1993 tournament with a 4-2 win over BU in the finals.

From The Vault
Nick Gillis tips home a Tom Poti pass to win the 1998 Beanpot Championship game against Harvard 2-1 in overtime

Back to this millennium… BU and Harvard met earlier this season, with BU pulling out a crazy 5-3 win. The teams went blow for blow through 40-minutes, tied 3-3 after two, before Nick Robert and Patrick Curry both scored in the final frame to give BU the win.

Monday night’s game will feature the two top teams in the east according to PairWise rankings. Both would be “one seeds” if the bracket was to come out today. BU is third and Harvard is fourth.

Harvard is currently riding a seven game unbeaten streak and a five game win streak coming into the Beanpot final. In round one, the Crimson took down Northeastern 4-3. Harvard had a 4-1 lead midway through the third before NU stormed back and scored a pair of goals late to make things real interesting in the final minutes, but Harvard hung on. Over their current hot streak, Harvard has beaten Cornell, Colgate, Dartmouth and last weekend torched Union 6-2 at home.

Scouting the Crimson.
Alex Kerfoot leads Harvard in scoring with 30 points, by way of 10 goals and 20 assists in 24 games played. Right behind him is fellow senior Sean Malone with 28 points. Malone is second on the team in goals scored with 14 and has also added 14 assists. Bruins prospect Ryan Donato, son of Harvard head coach Ted Donato, is the team's leader in goals scored at 15. He has also notched 10 assists for 25 points in 24 games.

Merrick Madsen will more than likely get the start in net for Harvard. The junior from Acton, California is 17-5-2 on the year with a .918 save percentage and a 2.22 goals against average in 24 appearances.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Lowell Preview

Before BU and Harvard battle it out in the Beanpot Final on Monday night, the Terriers will travel to Lowell tonight to take on the River Hawks at Tsongas Center.
Mike Moran scores on former Lowell goalie Boyle in the
second period of a 2-1 overtime win for BU last year.
(Photo By Matt Dresens)
Two weeks ago, BU upended Lowell 4-2 at home after losing two straight to Merrimack the week prior. Bobo Carpenter had a three point night, scoring two goals and adding an assist, while Clayton Keller posted a goal and an assist to get BU back on track and pick up two huge league points.

Since that meeting, both teams are unbeaten. Lowell steamrolled over Northeastern and New Hampshire by scores of 6-4 and 8-2 respectively.

Lowell is currently tied with Notre Dame for fourth in Hockey East with 19 points. Fourth place, as you know, is the cut line for a first round bye in the league playoffs. BU, on the other hand, is still three points behind Boston College for the top spot with 24, but are four points clear of third place Providence.

Thinking that this will be a “trap” game and one that will get overlooked in anticipation of the Beanpot Final? Well, since 2000 BU is 10-3-0 in the game between the first round and the championship, when they advance to the championship game.

Scouting the River Hawks
Joe Gambardella continues to pace the River Hawks scoring. In 29 games played, the senior from Staten Island has 37 points by way of 12 goals and 25 assists. CJ Smith is second with 32 points. Smith is the team leader in goal scored with 16 and has also added 16 assists. Other players to watch include Dylan Zink, Michael Kapla, and Jake Kamrass.

In goal, Tyler Wall is 16-8-1 in 25 games played. The freshman has posted a 2.22 goals against average and a .914 save percentage. Wall allowed three goals on 22 shots when these two teams played earlier in the year.

BU Notes
The Boston Hockey Blog is reporting that Jake Oettinger will be in net. In addition, Nick Roberto will be on the top line and Patrick Curry will be on the third line.

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Bring On Harvard; BU Drops BC In Beanpot Opener

BOSTON GARDEN — For the first time since 2007, BU defeated Boston College in the Beanpot, ending a six game drought for the Terriers against their Green Line rivals and will face Harvard in the finals next Monday.

Clayton Keller celebrates after scoring shorthanded in the
second period to give BU a 3-1 lead.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
“Its been a while since we beat Boston College in the Beanpot,” said coach Quinn. “We have had three great games with them all year. We’ve been fortunate to come out on the winning end. I thought all three games could have gone either way.”

BU controlled the pace of play for most of the first period, dominating the Eagles on the shot counter by a 12-2 margin, but only one found the back of the net. Patrick Harper made a strong move up the near side boards and swung in all the way behind the net to attempted a wrap-around. From the edge of the crease, Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson found the loose puck and punched it home through BC goalie Joe Woll five-hole to get the Terriers on the board 4:29 into the game.

“I really liked our first period tonight. We were really ready to play from the drop of the puck,” added Quinn.

The second period evened out. Boston College had much more jump and outshot BU 17-5, but it was the Terriers extending their lead on a power play goal from Chad Krys three and a half minutes into the frame. Krys beat Woll upstairs through traffic for his fourth of the year from Bobo Carpenter and Dante Fabbro.
Kieffer Bellows and Patrick Curry react after Chad Kry's
(not pictured) shot went in on the power play early in the
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
BC got on the board just under four minutes later. Austin Cangelosi was Johny on the spot for a loose puck in the crease to Jake Oettinger’s right and was able to pump home his 12th of the year before Oettinger could recover.

“I thought the second period was a little bit sloppy,” mentioned Quinn. “We got up 2-0, I thought we maybe dropped our guard a little bit, but we weathered the storm.”

Weather the storm they did and a bit more. Clayton Keller scored shorthanded on a breakaway at the 11:06 marker to give BU and all important two goal lead.

“Charlie [McAvoy] made a great play to me,” said Keller. “He found me breaking for the breakaway and Joe Woll’s a guy I played with ever since I was about ten years old, so I know his game a little bit. I was lucky enough to slide one five-hole.”

“ I don’t know If I have ever coached a guy who has the hand-eye coordination that he has,” said Quinn in praise of Kellers’ fourth shorthanded goal of the year. “He’s just so dangerous killing penalties. He’s such a threat out there, such great instincts out there. You know, when you’re on a power play and you got him coming at you, you get a little nervous ‘cause you know what could happen.”

Ryan Cloonan seemed to have made it a 4-1 game early in the third, but after review, it was determined he dislodged the puck from Woll by pushing him into the goal and thus it was waived off.

BU was able to hold the BC offense in check for the remainder of the game, thanks in large part to the number of penalties the Eagles took. BU had four power plays in the final frame, but could not convert on any.

BU is back at it on Friday at Lowell, before facing Harvard in the championship game for the first time since 1998.  

Monday, February 6, 2017

Beanpot Preview -- BC, Semifinal

Still in awe of last night? Yeah… So am I, but its time to shift the focus from Super Bowl talk to Beanpot hype. Tonight, BU and BC once again face off on the first Monday in February at Boston Garden.

From The Vault
Jake Oettinger stuffs Colin White in the first period on a
onetimer in the meeting at Conte earlier this season.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
It is a rematch of last year’s epic 1-0 overtime thriller that saw Boston College’s Alex Tuch score the game’s only goal 1:57 into the extra session to give BC their 20th Beanpot title. BC still is a minimum of a decade away from tying BU’s total of 30.

The two teams have already met twice this year. BU swept the season series with the Eagles in mid-January with a 2-1 win at home and a 3-0 blanking at Conte. It was BU’s first weekend sweep of the Eagles since 2002.

Jake Oettinger and BU special teams were the stories of that weekend. Oettinger stopped 66 of 67 shots he faced and the Terrier power play went three for five. Also, BU's PK only allowed one power play goal on seven BC man advantages in two games.

Since the two teams last met, Boston College hasn’t lost another game. The Eagles ran through Umass, UConn, Notre Dame, and New Hampshire and currently find themselves in seventh in the PairWise.

Scouting the Eagles 
Matty Gaudreau continues to lead the scoring charge for the Eagles. In 29 games played, Gaudreau has posted six goals and 20 assists for 26 points. Right behind him is Colin White. White, one of the heroes on the US World Junior squad that won gold in Montreal a month ago, has notched 23 points by way of 13 goals and 10 assists. White scored BC’s only goal against BU this season, a power play goal midway through the second period of game one. Other players to watch include Austin Cangelosi, Chris Brown, Casey Fitzgerald and Ryan Fitzgerald.

Between the pipes, Joe Woll has continued his excellent freshman campaign. In 22 appearances, Woll has a 13-8-1 record with a 2.34 goal against average and a .923 save percentage.

Early Game
As is the norm when BU and BC play in the opening round, Northeastern and Harvard will take the ice at 5:00 for semifinal number one. NU has been playing better as of late, winning four of their last five games. Harvard on the other hand, has rebound nicely from three consecutive losses in mid-January and are unbeaten in their last five games played.

All in all, it should be a very competitive night of hockey. Unlike in years past, all four teams have a legitimate shot at winning this tournament.  

Friday, February 3, 2017

UMass Preview

Tonight, BU goes for the season sweep of UMass, as the Minutemen come to Agganis. A little less than a month ago, BU took down UMass 5-3 at Fenway Park as part of Frozen Fenway in early January.
From The Vault
Ryan Cloonan and Ivan Chukarov go after a puck along the
wall in the first period of Frozen Fenway earlier this year.
(Photo by Matt Dresens)
BU has won the last seven games in this series and you have to go back four years to find the last UMass win. That was February 1st, 2013 at the Mullins Center, a 5-1 Minutemen victory. UMass’ last win at The Greek was February 10th, 2012, with a 3-2 score.

Currently, the Minutemen are 5-20-2 under the command of first year head coach Greg Carvel. They are last in the league standings with just five points, and haven’t won a game since December 30th, the opening round of the Marriucci Classic in Minnesota vs Alabama Huntsville, a 2-1 overtime win.

UMass played the Terriers tough at Fenway. They fought to the end, scoring an extra-attacker goal in the final minute, but came up short. BU controlled most of the play in that game and was leading 3-0 before UMass stormed back to make it a one goal game. Chad Krys and Gabe Chabot scored two goals in 40 seconds with less than five minutes to play to snuff out any chance of a Minutemen comeback.

Scouting the Minutemen
Senior Steven Iacobellis is the offensive leader for UMass, coming in with seven goals and nine assists for 16 points on the year. Second is Austin Plevy, a sophomore from Langley, BC, who has posted 14 points by way of five goals and nine assists. Other Players to watch include Ray Pigozzi, Ivan Chukarov and William Lagesson.

In goal, Ryan Wischow has played the majority of the time between the pipes. In 21 appearances, the freshman has a 4-14-2 record to go along with a .901 save percentage and a 3.05 goals against average. Wischow allowed five goals on 25 shots against BU at Fenway earlier this year. Sophomore Nic Renyard has seen time in nine games with a 1-6-0 record. In that time, he has recorded an .880 sv% and a 4.01 GAA.

BU Notes
The Daily Free Press is reporting that Jake Oettinger will be in net for BU. In addition, Nik Olsson will be out “long term.” He had surgery on his right leg to repair a broken bone. There is currently no timetable for his return.

I will not be there tonight, as I have my own hockey commitment. I know you are all devastated.