After a disappointing 3-3 draw on Friday night, the No. 9 Boston University Terriers came back to Agganis Arena to take on the University of New Hampshire Wildcats. BU honored its tremendous senior class of hockey players before the game, including goaltender Sean Maguire, forwards Mike Moran, Ahti Oksanen and Danny O’Regan, and defenseman, the captain as well, Matt Grzelyck. Members of every class helped contribute throughout the game, as the Terriers beat the Wildcats, 3-2.
Before the game, BU brought family of each of the seniors to honor their Terrier careers. Coach Quinn said,“Those guys mean so much to this program. It gets emotional. It really feels good to send them off with a win tonight, but the good news is we get to play more hockey here at Agganis.”
“It was weird that it was our last regular season game here, but it was great to get my parents on the ice before the game. It was a nice night and glad to get the win.” senior Danny O’Regan said.
The Scarlet and Red would dominate possession in the first period, and coach David Quinn’s power play would capitalize at 5:51, albeit a fluky goal. Grzelyck carried the puck on the wing to the right of UNH starter Danny Tirone and threw a changeup at the net. The puck took a weird hop five feet out and skipped past Tirone and into the net, giving the Terriers the lead. BU would come up large on an O’Regan tripping call, and O’Regan himself would redeem the penalty with a goal. Shane Switzer, in the lineup because of a Brandon Hickey injury on Friday, took a pass at the top of the blue line, found a small window to pass and slipped a cross-ice feed to O’Regan, one-timing it over the goal line.
“I kinda got caught out there, I probably should have changed earlier, but I saw Laner jumping on a loose puck, winning a battle, and same with Ahti,” O’Regan said. “They both did a good job getting the puck to the point, and Shane Switzer just made a great play, found me off to the side of the net.”
Boston University had another possession-heavy frame in the second, some credit to be given to three Wildcat penalties. Harry Quast slashed Matt Lane on a breakaway, Matt Dawson cross-checked Jordan Greenway on said power play, leading to a 43 second 5-on-3, and Andrew Poturalski kept his elbow high on a hit. Dawson’s penalty would be the lethal one, as Bobo Carpenter took the puck in the slot and roofed a sly backhander from the right hash-mark, increasing the BU lead to three.
Despite a good start, the Terriers would let UNH back into the game in the third period. In a net mouth scramble, Ara Nazarian would find the puck and slide it past Boston University goaltender Connor LaCouvee. On a fast Wildcat breakout, Shane Eiserman found Cameron Marks untouched as the trailer, and Marks sniped a wrister over LaCouvee’s glove to cut the Terrier lead to one goal.
LaCouvee came up big on a Matias Cleland shot and got a toe on a golden rebound to Poturalski with just under eight minutes to go in the third period. With the UNH net empty and a Brien Diffley hold with 1:12 to go, LaCouvee continued to make teriffic saves, holding onto the one goal victory.
LaCouvee said, “In hockey, you can’t live in the past, you have to live in the present. That’s what I like to do, and by doing that, I was able to make a couple more saves, along with the help of my team and get the win.”
“Obviously, this time of the season, every point is valuable,” Quinn said. “We kinda felt like we missed out on an opportunity to get two points last night, but we took advantage of the opportunity tonight, got a valuable win.”
In the last weekend of the regular season, Boston University travels to South Bend, In. to take on the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.