By: Brian Lombardo
LOWELL – An offensive frenzy, lead by two goals apiece from senior captain Bobo Carpenter and sophomore Shane Bowers, was backed up by 40 saves from junior goaltender Jake Oettinger as the Terriers took down the UMass Lowell River Hawks 5-2 on Saturday.
With the win, BU (5-8-2 overall) moves to 5-5-2 in Hockey East play, good for 12 points and sole possession of fifth place in the standings.
The Terriers got out to a hot start scoring three goals in the first period. Carpenter broke open the scoring 10:03 into the opening frame on a turnaround shot in the slot, beating River Hawk goaltender Tyler Wall low on his glove side. The score was made possible by sophomore defenseman Kasper Kotkansalo who picked off a UML breakout pass and found Carpenter with a pass.
BU struck again exactly three minutes later when Kotkansalo hit a streaking Bowers through the neutral zone with a pass. Bowers did the rest himself, carrying the puck in on Wall before unleashing a backhander that beat the goalie on his glove side.
Carpenter got his second of the period shorthanded. The goal was assisted by junior Patrick Curry. That score made it three goals in a span of 3:59 of game time for the Terriers. That chased Wall from the game in favor of Christoffer Hernberg, the goalie that kept the Terriers at bay the night before.
The River Hawks answered quickly after Carpenters shorthanded goal. With a set play off of the faceoff, just five seconds later Charlie Levesque put one past Oettinger.
Lowell then cut the Terriers lead to one when Mattias Goransson fired a one-timer from above the faceoff circle past the open glove of Oettinger. The goal came 10:42 into the second period.
It was all Terriers from there on out. In the third Harper scored while on the power play. The goal came 4:52 into the final frame and was assisted by the Max Willman and David Farrance. Then with less than three minutes to play Bowers provided the dagger in the
River Hawks when he scored his second goal of the game, pushing the Terriers lead to 5-2. Bowers’ mark was assisted by Curry and Farrance.
“I thought it was a gutsy road win,” said head coach Albie O’Connell postgame. “It was nice to see our players rewarded, when we had chances we capitalized.”
Five different Terriers finished the game with two or more points. Curry had three points (1G, 2A), Carpenter and Bowers each had two goals, and Kotkansalo and Farrance both had two assists a piece. Oettinger also had a strong game in net for the Terriers with 15 of his 40 saves coming in the third period.
“I thought [Oettinger] was really good,” O’Connell said. “Our best players played for the most part played really well tonight, and everyone followed their lead.”
The team will have one final game next Friday, Dec. 14, when they host Dartmouth at Agganis Arena to close out the fall semester.
Of course the team will be shorthanded in that contest as the two Terriers who were selected to Team Canada’s roster for the World Junior Championship Shane Bowers and Cam Crotty will be away at camp for their country. In addition, as mentioned in coach O’Connell’s postgame press conference on Friday night at Agganis Arena, junior defenseman Chad Krys will be out the remainder of the first semester.