Men’s Ice Hockey: Terriers Take on Riverhawks for Shot at Semifinals

BU Men’s Ice Hockey vs. UMass-Lowell (Hockey East Quarterfinals) March 11-13

ABOUT THE OPPONENT – BU Leads All-Time Series 72-26-9

Location – Lowell, Massachusetts; Mascot – Riverhawks; This Year’s Record – 21-8-5 (12-6-4 HEA), 12-2-3 at home; Fun Fact – This will be the second straight season that BU and UML will meet in the Hockey East Playoffs.

PREVIEW

For the second season in a row, Boston University and UMass-Lowell will meet in the Hockey East Tournament, this time to decide which school advances to the semifinals at TD Garden next weekend.

The Terriers and the Riverhawks met in last season’s Hockey East Championship, with BU winning 5-3. The teams split the season series this year, with each team winning at home.

The fifth-seeded Terriers are fresh off of a series sweep of UMass Amherst, outscoring the Minutemen 7-5 on the weekend. BU will travel to Tsongas Arena in Lowell to face the fourth-ranked Riverhawks.

UML is led by CJ Smith and Adam Chapie. The duo has led the Riverhawks top offensive unit, and together has scored 28 goals and 36 assists.

Defensively, the Riverhawks are paced by Dylan Zink. The junior has recorded 24 assists and is a team-high +15. Zink has also taken 88 shots on goal this season.

In goal for UMass-Lowell will be Kevin Boyle. The senior transfer from UMass-Amherst has been one of the country’s best goalies, boasting a .932 SV% and a 1.84 GAA.

For the Terriers, forward Danny O’Regan has been the highlight of the BU offense. The senior leads the team with 16 goals and 26 assists. He averages more than a point per game through his career, and has been one of BU’s most consistent performers.

Defensively, freshman Charlie McAvoy had an impressive series against UMass-Amherst. His strong freshman campaign is highlighted by his 20 assists and +14 rating.

In net, Sean Maguire looks to continue his impressive senior season in the quarterfinals. Maguire posts a .928 SV% and a 2.18 GAA through 22 games this season.

Faceoff on Friday in game one is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. and on Saturday at 7:00 p.m. for game two. Game three if necessary will be on Sunday at 4:00 p.m.

PREDICTION

UMass-Lowell and BU are close to even in terms of points, and are well within the pairwise threshold. To ensure advancing to the NCAA Tournament each team will be looking to win the series, which will likely take three games and could see the road team, Boston University, come out on top.

BU’s THREE KEYS TO THE GAME

  1. Do Not Fall Behind

UMass-Lowell boasts an impressive record under Head Coach Norm Bazin when taking a lead at any point in a game. It is important for BU to find a way to score first on UML in order to dictate the game.

  1. Draw Penalties

UML’s top two penalty takers are their two leading scorers. BU must draw penalties not only to get power play chances but also to wear down the Riverhawks top players.

  1. Traffic in Front of the Net

Kevin Boyle has been solid all season, but can be shaky when opponents make traffic in the net-front area. The Terriers must annoy Boyle and continue to crash the net to create chances.

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