By: Jake Reiser
BOSTON, MA – This weekend was one of utmost importance for the Terriers. Last season ended in disappointment against the Providence College Friars, and this weekend was their chance at redemption. But as a #11 ranked team taking on a #1 ranked team with former Terrier stars Jack Eichel and Evan Rodrigues onto greener pastures, the task would prove daunting for this new-look BU squad. Just like their game on Friday, the Terriers and Friars skated to a tie, this time ending 3-3.
After a very physical opening 17 minutes, Providence College capitalized first, as a wide open Brian Pinho took a pass from Nick Saracino in open space in the middle of the ice, and ripped one past LaCouvee to put the Frairs up 1-0.
BU was shorthanded most of the second period, an interference penalty Brandon Hickey and a hitting from behind against Doyle Somerby put the Terriers down 5-on-3, and Jake Walman slammed a one-timer through LaCouvee, a 2-0 Friars lead.
Coach Quinn was clearly irate on the bench after the goal, drawing a bench minor, and putting BU down 5-on-3 once more. But in a big show by the Terrier’s penalty killers, they staved off the Friar power play, seemingly firing up the bench and the crowd. On a delayed penalty against Brain Pinho, chaos ensued, with Oksanen hitting a post, and multiple one-timer chances down low missed.
“I think we were playing a great game at the end of the second,” said BU captain Matt Grzelcyk. “We just tried to stay motivated and positive in the locker room”
BU came out firing to start the third, and on the power play, Matt Grzelcyk slid a skillful pass to Ahti Oksanen, who threw one past PC starter Nick Ellis to cut the lead in half.
“I was trying to find a lane, and Ahti is great at finding those soft areas, that’s what great goal scorers do, I saw him at the last second, and he made a great shot,” said Grzelcyk.
Only after that goal did the BU Dog Pound student section definitely get loud and start to put the heat on the Friars. The Terriers would go quickly back to the power play on a hitting from behind on Erik Foley, and seven seconds after the end of that man advantage, Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson tied the game at two.
BU’s power play continued to bring the Terriers momentum, and during a cross-checking call against Steve McParland, JFK tallied his second goal of the game to give the Terriers the lead with 7:28 to go.
“I felt we were a little too predictable early, from up top,” said BU Head Coach David Quinn. “Then we started getting things down low and changing out look a little bit, so when we did go up top, we had a little bit more room.”
But just 1:17 later, Walman scored his league-leading and NCAA best ninth goal of the season on the power play, his second of the game, to tie the game once again.
Despite an overtime period filled with chances for both sides, the game ended in a 3-3 draw.
“I think we found out an awful lot about ourselves this weekend,” said Coach Quinn.
BU stays at home for both games next weekend, as the University of Michigan Wolverines play two games at Agganis Arena. Friday’s game gas a 6:00 p.m. puck drop, while Saturday’s game will start at 4:00 p.m.