Friday, February 24, 2017

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.

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