By: Patrick Donnelly
BOSTON – After dropping their first game last Friday against Northeastern and skating to a tie in the rematch on Saturday, head coach Brian Durocher’s Terriers will face stiff competition against Merrimack College (3-0-1) on Friday and the University of New Hampshire (0-1-1) on Saturday. The Terriers (0-1-1) will be looking for their first win of the season after a tough start to last weekend.
Durocher knows his team will have to give its best effort for a full 60 minutes of both games this weekend in order to find success.
“We have to understand that 60 minutes of competing around the net means one game, not the season,” Durocher said. “If we forget that and if we come with anything less than 110%, we’re not going to be good enough.”
The Terriers continue their Hockey East slate with two matchups this weekend. The action kicks off Friday night at 7 p.m. as Merrimack Warriors hosts the Terriers at Lawler Rink. Merrimack has yet to play a Hockey East team this season, but the Warriors rattled off two dominant wins against Union College followed by a hard-fought tie and a win against Penn State.
Durocher said the Terriers need to support their goaltending with a more sound defensive game for the all three periods, especially against these strong Hockey East teams.
“You may get lucky on a given day, but your goalies can’t stand on their heads and keep dealing with people right in front of the net,” Durocher said.
After their tilt at Merrimack, the Terriers will return home to Walter Brown Arena in a Saturday matinee at 3p.m., hosting UNH. The Wildcats are also in search of their first win of the season. Saturday’s game will be UNH’s first of their Hockey East schedule.
Durocher knows that the Terriers struggled on the penalty kill last weekend allowing opponents four power play goals in just nine chances.
“You can run-and-gun, but if you’re giving up odd-man rushes or great chances by the net, you’re going to be in trouble,” Durocher said. “That has to be our focus this week as we just keep getting better and we want to keep working on killing penalties.”
The team will look to come out flying and string together three full periods in their games this weekend as they look to bounce back and get some points early on in this young season.