By: Dan Shulman
Saturday, October 24, 2015
TOP – Brandon Fortunato
STATS: one goal, one assist, four shots on goal, +3 rating, 0 PIM
For the second game in a row on Saturday, Brandon Fortunato was the best player on the ice. As a defenseman, he commanded the pace of the play. Using his speed, he was able to generate odd-man rushes for the Terriers. The agile Fortunato also moved the puck around the offensive zone easily against the Huskies. His passing has gotten much crisper since last season and his shot has become more powerful. On defense, Fortunato made smart plays, taking pucks off opposing forwards’ sticks and thwarting UConn’s offensive opportunities. He netted his second power play tally of the season, which ended up being the game-winning goal.
BOTTOM – Brandon Hickey
STATS: one goal, two shots on goal, EVEN rating, 4 PIM
Brandon Hickey was sensational in his freshman campaign. Scoring six goals and adding 17 assists along with 115 shots on goal, he was one of the premier defenders in the nation. In his sophomore season, he has only taken four shots, recorded just a single point, and is a -3 for the season. Hickey seems reluctant to shoot the puck this season, and passes up any opportunity to get a puck on net. His passing was sloppy on Saturday and he showed little effort in hustling to keep pucks in the offensive zone. He redeemed his night with an excellent empty-net goal on a 170 foot bank shot, but his play must improve if he wants to stay in this incredibly deep defense.
SURPRISE: Sean Maguire
STATS: 16 saves, 59:13 ice time, WIN
Sean Maguire missed all of last season due to injury. After taking a year away from the game of hockey, Maguire returned this season for his senior year. He started the opening game at Union, and allowed four goals in the loss. Stepping in between the pipes for the second time on Saturday, Maguire almost relived a nightmare in the opening seconds as a UConn shot rattled the crossbar. Despite the shaky start, Maguire fought off 16 of 18 shots in the win. However, both goals came as a result of defensive breakdowns and poor coverage, hardly Maguire’s fault. Not only did Maguire shut down the opponents, but also moved the puck rather well for a goaltender, except for one minor blip. Overall, it was a solid performance from a goalie who is likely to be the starter down the stretch.
Tuesday, October 27, 2015
TOP – Danny O’Regan
STATS: one goal, no assists, five shots on goal, EVEN rating, 0 PIM
Danny O’Regan has finally opened his goal-scoring account for the 2015-16 season, notching his fiftieth tally as a Terrier. O’Regan was one of the only BU players who played a clean game, and despite winning just 39% of his face-offs, his play remained stellar. O’Regan was one of the only bright spots for the Terriers on a tough night in Storrs, earning Third Star of the Game honors. Not only did O’Regan create chances, but he played a major part in preventing them at the other end of the ice, blocking two shots.
BOTTOM – Shane Switzer
STATS: no points, no shots on goal, -1 rating, 4 PIM
Shane Switzer returned to the defensive rotation on Tuesday, getting the nod over sophomore Brien Diffley. After a terrific preseason, Switzer has yet to produce in regular season play. Tuesday was no different for Switzer. A rather forgetful performance, the freshman speedster took two penalties, one of which led to UConn’s fourth goal of the game to finish off the Terriers. Switzer was held to no shots on net and also failed to earn a point on the night. He was also on the ice for the Huskies’ only even strength goal, also the game-winning goal, which came as a result of a defensive zone breakdown from the Terriers.
SURPRISE – Robbie Baillargeon
STATS: no goals, one assist, six shots on goal, +1 rating, 0 PIM
Robbie Baillargeon showed flashes of his freshman-self on Tuesday. The junior center won 45% of his face-offs and recorded six shots on goal. On the other end of the ice, Baillargeon was instrumental in starting offensive rushes, blocking one shot and showing good defensive poise. He was also able to play a clean game, taking no penalties on the night. Baillargeon stayed poised and played hard until the final whistle, collecting an assist in the final minute of regulation. If Robbie Baillargeon continues to play like this, the once team-leading scorer will return to prominence yet again.