By Allie Debe
Boston University (1-1-2, 0-0-1 HE) tied 3-3 in their first Hockey East Conference matchup Friday against UMass-Lowell (3-2-2, 0-0-1 HE) in Lowell.
The Terriers started off poised and controlled, maintaining puck possession for most of the first ten minutes. Though there wasn’t the flurry of goals characteristic of the first few minutes of BU’s first contests, they maintained the same level of aggressive, fast-skating play the team has developed. The team looked more comfortable, relaxed, though, with the added benefit of seemingly fewer jitters as the newbies have settled.
The first penalty of the night came just over six minutes in, with a hooking minor called on senior captain Patrick Curry. The Terriers down a man, managed a successful kill and maintained their first period prowess.
The first goal of the game came from senior assistant captain Patrick Harper. A man of incredible patience, Harper faced off against Lowell goaltender Tyler Wall on a breakaway and snuck in a feed from junior defenseman David Farrance as Wall went low. Unfortunately the buzz lasted only seconds as freshman forward Ethan Phillips took another hooking call just a minute later.
As in previous games, the Terriers’ physical game resulted in too many penalty minutes. Constantly being on defense for BU seemed to slow their momentum in terms of gaining a substantial lead, but yet even in the first period, having the man advantage didn’t bring any help.
The Terriers saw three power play opportunities in the first 20 but were unable to capitalize on their chances. Then, to add to the frustration, freshman defenseman Case McCarthy was called for a cross-checking minor with less than a minute left in the first. Not only could the Terriers not seem to find an offensive stride, but now to start the second, they would need to focus on maintaining their one-goal lead with just four men on the ice.
This didn’t seem to phase BU, though. The Terriers hit the ground running in the second period when just 14 seconds in, and with a minute left on Lowell’s man advantage, Harper swooped in to capitalize off a Lowell turnover, this time unassisted. Not even five minutes later, now on the power play after Lowell’s Andre Lee was called for interference, Farrance shot a one-timer from the blue line to extend BU’s lead to three.
It seemed the Terriers had finally gotten the ball rolling offensively, but this was short-lived. The River Hawks answered 24 seconds later with their own goal and then scored another with less than five minutes left in the second.
Through this, the Terriers retained their shot advantage, ending the period with 25 shots to Lowell’s 18, and controlled puck possession. However, the Terriers just didn’t get looks good enough to capitalize on. With patience wearing thin, BU saw a number of unnecessary turnovers that only added to their offensive frustrations.
The third period saw a resurgence of energy for the Terriers, and though Lowell was able to tie the game a minute and 20 into the last period, BU refused to go down without a fight. Despite penalties called on Curry and freshman forward Trevor Zegras throughout the third, a number of good yet unsuccessful chances and some great saves from graduate net minder Sam Tucker sent the game to overtime.
Tucker faced 28 shots, stopping 25 of them, while Lowell’s Wall faced 36 and stopped 33.
In overtime, neither team was able to capitalize, leaving the Terriers unsatisfied with their second tie of the season. BU will turn around to face New Hampshire Saturday at Agganis at 7:00 p.m.