By: Jake Reiser
Coach David Quinn knows the psyche of his hockey team is fragile following a two-game losing skid. For the No. 4 Boston University Terriers squad, every regular season game counts with just two weeks left on the docket.
They started on Friday night at Agganis Arena, the first game of a home-and-home weekend series with the University of New Hampshire Wildcats. Despite going down 2-0 and 4-2 in the match, the Terriers fought their way back both times and ended overtime in a 4-4 draw.
Doyle Somerby made his season debut as a left-winger instead of a left defenseman, while Jake Oettinger drew the blue paint once again.
The Wildcats got on the board early in the game on their eighth in the nation ranked power play. With Bobo Carpenter in the box for high-sticking, Michael McNicholas and Tyler Kelleher played catch from each of the half walls until McNicholas ripped a one-timer through Oettinger. Next, Brien Diffley coughed the puck up to Ara Nazarian just behind Oettinger, and Nazarian’s wrap-around squeaked home to give UNH a 2-0 lead after one.
It took until a third of the way through the second period for the Terriers to find the back of the net. With Charlie McAvoy digging the puck out of the corner to the right of UNH starter Danny Tirone, he found Jordan Greenway on the backhand, whose ice-level shot zipped over the goal line.
To finish off their first two goal comeback, the power play cashed in. Patrick Harper carried the puck down the left-wing wall and compressed the UNH defense by cutting in towards the net. A back-pass to Bobo Carpenter and a one-time snapshot by the sophomore evened the game at two goals.
Less than two minutes later, Dylan Chanter scored his first collegiate goal by wristing one from the point through traffic, the Wildcat lead restored. With just 39.9 to go in the second, Kelleher received a pass at the right circle, spun, and fired a shot glove-side on Oettinger that snuck through, restoring a two goal lead for UNH.
What set the tone for the third period was a fluky goal by Charlie McAvoy just 20 seconds into the final frame. His shot, not intending to be a competitive shot, slid through everyone, including Tirone, and into the back of the net.
From there, the Terriers pounded away, ending the third with a 17-4 period shots differential. One more shot went in for BU, as after Jordan Greenway’s shot-pass from the side of the net deflected into the slot, Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson pushed the rebound in, bulging the twine and tying the game once again.
“We didn’t come out the best in the first period, but it shows a little strength that we can get back in this game and get a point,” Forsbacka-Karlsson said.
Boston University also held a marked advantage in the overtime period, a 6-1 shots differential, but couldn’t put home a game winner.
“Just really proud of our team,” Quinn said. “You know, we’re obviously not feeling great about ourselves and in a little bit of a rut, but to recover after the first period we had and play the way we did says an awful lot about our mental toughness and our resiliency and our togetherness.”
Puck drop for the second part of this home-and-home series from Durham, NH. is at 7 p.m. at the Whittmore Center.