By: Patrick Donnelly
The No. 8 Boston University Terriers (21-8-8, 15-6-6 WHEA) fell to the No. 6 Boston College Eagles (26-10-1, 19-7-1 WHEA) yesterday in the Hockey East Semifinals at Schneider Arena in Providence by a final score of 5-1.
Sophomore goaltender Corinne Schroeder got the start for Brian Durocher’s Terriers while freshman Maddy McArthur got the call for Katie Crawley’s squad.
The Eagles got off to a quick shot to say the least, taking a 1-0 lead. Just 22 seconds into the contest, Daryl Watts gained entry into the BU zone before shoveling the puck over to Makenna Newkirk, who uncorked a wrist shot on Schroeder. Schroeder made the initial save, but the rebound fluttered over her head and behind her, where Lindsey Agnew was waiting to bat it in.
After a lackluster start, the Terriers were able to get some chances of their own on McArthur, including an odd-man rush that resulted in Nara Elia hitting a post. However, the domination from the Eagles returned in the waining minutes of the opening frame.
A miscommunication between Reagan Rust and Conor Galway led to a breakaway opportunity for Caitrin Lonergan, who made a nice move to deke Schroeder out of position, but the net-minder was able to stretch and make an impressive toe save. As the two sides headed to the first intermission with the score still 1-0 in favor of the Eagles, the Terriers were being outshot 9-3, a theme that would hold for the rest of the contest.
Just over three minutes into the middle stanza, Courtney Correia was whistled for what was a questionable trip, adding to a dicey afternoon for the officials. Not long after on the ensuing power play, Watts circled the net, looking off both the BU defenders and Schroeder, and sent a seeing-eye shot that made its way through Schroeder to make it 2-0.
After what felt like a back-breaker of a goal, all the momentum swung the Eagles’ way as the Terriers were completely overwhelmed by the BC attack. A little over the halfway point of the second, Reagan Rust made her way to the penalty box, putting the Eagles back on the man-advantage. The onslaught continued from BC as Lonergan sent a cross-ice feed to Kelly Browne, who hammered the puck home with a one-timer through the wickets of Schroeder; making it 3-0 in favor of the Eagles.
13:33 into the second, the Terriers got a power play of their own as Erin Connolly went to the box for roughing. In what was a must-score power play, Abby Cook got the puck at the point after some crisp puck-movement for the Terriers. Cook let a wrist shot go that found its way through the screen of Elia in front and passed McArthur to pull the Terriers within two.
About two minutes after, Cayla Barnes skated into the BU zone and left the puck for Watts, who used Abbey Stanley as her own screen, zipping a shot passed Schroeder’s ear and under the bar to put the Eagles up 4-1. BC did not ease off the gas as the second period wound down, outshooting the Terriers by a total margin of 27-7.
The Terriers came out with a better effort in the third period, peppering McArthur with the most shots she had seen all game, but were still no match for the Eagles. 6:33 into the final frame. Megan Keller led the rush for BC before dishing the puck off to Delaney Belinskas, who let go a smart, low shot on Schroeder to create a rebound. Schroeder made the initial save, but a big, bad rebound made its way out into the slot where Connolly was able to put it home, putting the Eagles up 5-1.
That score would hold for the rest of the contest, despite a much better showing from the Terriers in the third; it was too little, too late. The final shots on goal totals stood at 36-17 in favor of the Eagles, who advanced to the Hockey East Championship where they will face No. 3 Northeastern.
On the day, Schroeder made 31 saves for her team in an effort where she did not get much help at all, while McArthur stopped 16 of the 17 shots she faced. Watts finished with two goals and an assist for BC while Newkirk, Barnes, and Kali Flanagan each had two assists.
“Today was a spot-on, great performance,” Durocher said of the Eagles’ effort today. “It was their day today, 100 percent.”
“I think we got grounded, gave ourselves a chance in that first period and into the second; then they got a couple of power play goals,” Durocher continued.
The Terriers finish their season with a 21-8-8 record, beating ranked opponents four times, and peaking in 2019 with a 13-3-3 record after January 1st. After being picked to finish fifth in Hockey East before the season, the Terriers went on to finish third in the conference as their 21 wins marked the seventh 20-win season in the program’s history, reaching the Hockey East Semifinals for the 11th time in 14 seasons.
Jesse Compher finished her breakout sophomore campaign with 61 points (17G, 44A) and was the first Terrier to reach at least 40 assists in a single season (her 44 helpers stand as a program record); she was named a top-10 finalist for the Patty Kazmaier Award, given to the best player in women’s Division I hockey.
Redshirt junior captain Sammy Davis capped off a sensational comeback season, setting career-highs in goals (25), assists (27), and points (52). Schroeder followed up a good freshman campaign with a great sophomore season, posting an 18-7-7 record, a .933 save percentage, and a 1.90 goals against average. All three of the Terriers’ goaltenders will return next season, along with 18 of the 21 skaters on the team, who accounted for 112 of the team’s 118 goals this season.
The Terriers will also graduate three seniors, who played in their final collegiate hockey games of their careers: captain Reagan Rust, Conor Galway, and Mary Grace Kelley. After transferring from RIT before her junior season, Rust skated in 74 games for the Terriers and 143 total on her career, posting 17 goals, 46 assists, and 63 points.
Galway appeared in 143 contests for BU with two goals and 19 assists for 21 points on her career while Kelley skated in 139 games for the Terriers, adding nine goals, 15 assists, and 21 points. The greatest accomplishment of their careers was bringing the Beanpot back to Commonwealth Avenue for the first time since 1981, ending a 38-year drought.