Over the course of the last 60 years, plenty of big names have made their way through the four schools that compete for this coveted title every year. Despite plenty of worthy candidates, only 52 people have ever been elected to the Beanpot Hall of Fame.
Now, with the 60th installment of the tournament through its first round, we have put together our own collection of the best-of-the-best from Harvard, Boston College, Boston University and Northeastern men's ice hockey.
Below is the Beanpot All-Time Team — the best starting six, a high-caliber seventh man, and the top coach to lead them.
Goalie: John Curry, Boston University, 2003-07
Curry is easily the biggest surprise in this lineup. He joined the Terriers as a walk-on in 2003 and, despite being slotted as a third-stringer, quickly made his presence felt. In his sophomore season, he became the starter and helped BU take down Northeastern in what would be the first of three Beanpot final victories. The following year, Curry got better. He posted an 24-8-4 record, including a 12-game winning streak that spanned roughly six weeks from Dec. 30, 2005 to Feb. 13, 2006. His efforts helped BU to both the Hockey East title and their second consecutive Beanpot title, this time taking out Boston College. If that wasn't enough, Curry's senior season put the cherry on top of a truly impressive career. Again, the Terriers won the Beanpot final over BC. The trophy belonged to the Terriers for the third consecutive season, all with Curry as the netminder. Curry ended the 2006-07 tournament with an unheard of .985 save percentage and capped his Beanpot career with an undefeated 5-0 record. He took home the Beanpot MVP that year, as well as the Eberly Award for goaltending.
Curry can now be found playing for the Hamburg Freezers of the Deutsche Eishockey Liga in Germany.
Defenseman: Tom "Red" Martin, Boston College, 1957-61
Protecting Curry starts with Red Martin and his impeccable resume. On the ice, Martin was a phenom. He helped BC win two Beanpot titles in 1959 and 1961. During their run to the latter title, he scored three goals and three assists and earned the Beanpot MVP award, the first ever given to a defenseman. Martin was also named an All-American that year, as well as in 1960. In each of his three seasons with the Eagles, Martin earned All-New England and All-East honors. Of course, after his college career was over, Martin kept skating. He joined the 1964 U.S. Olympic team as the alternate captain. Despite being drafted by the Bruins, Martin turned down the chance to play professionally because he would make more money in accounting. He was named to BC's Hall of Fame in 1968 for both his time on the ice and his skills at first base for the Eagles. In addition to his hockey accolades, Red played in two College World Series in 1960 and 1961.
Martin, who also has the third-most career points among BC defensemen (23-111-134), is now a retired business owner and resides in Norwood, Mass.
Defenseman: Vic Stanfield, Boston University, 1971-75
It is hardly surprising to see another BU name here. Between 1972 and 1975, Stanfield helped the Terriers claim two of their now 29 Beanpot titles. What was surprising, however, was how Stanfield impacted the team during their two title runs. During his sophomore season in 1972-73, he put together a 1-5-6 line and led the tournament in scoring, the first time a defenseman had ever done so. Despite not taking home the Beanpot crown in his junior season, Stanfield was awarded the first of two All-American honors. Fortunately, the Terriers were back at the top for his senior season in 1974-75. And again, Stanfield led the tournament in scoring, this time putting together six points with two goals and four assists. He ended his career on top and as an All-American. After both title runs, Stanfield came away with a Beanpot title for his team and an MVP award for his personal trophy case. By the time his BU career was over, he had amassed a career line of 31-129-160 in just 92 games.
Stanfield now works as a golf pro at Lochmere Golf and Country Club in New Hampshire.
Forward: Billy Cleary, Harvard, 1952-56
Cleary only played one season with the Crimson, but he made sure to leave his mark. He lettered in both baseball and ice hockey, and still holds or shares seven school records in the latter. Among those records is the most points in a single season with 89. His gift for scoring showed up in full force for his one Beanpot tournament in 1955. Cleary still holds several Beanpot records, including most goals scored in a period (4), most goals scored in a game (5), most points in a game (7), most goals in a tournament (7) and most points in a tournament (11). He helped the Crimson take home the title that year, ending the game with a cold-blooded overtime goal against Boston College. Cleary took home both All-American honors and the Beanpot MVP that year, but he was hardly done playing hockey. His remarkable performance for Harvard helped him to appearances with the U.S. Olympic hockey team in 1956 and 1960. After the 1956 Olympic run, Cleary was the proud owner of a silver medal. Four years later, Cleary's second time through, the U.S. took down the Soviets and brought home the gold.
Cleary went on to coach the Harvard men's ice hockey team for 19 years before becoming the athletic director in 1990. He retired in 2000.
Forward: Tony Amonte, Boston University, 1989-91
Every team needs a little bit of clutch, and Amonte provides it in spades. In 1991, the Terriers forward put together one of the most memorable performances in Beanpot history. After taking a brutal check that left him on the ice for several minutes during the title game against Boston College, he returned to the action to become the impact player of the game. During the second period, Amonte knocked in a hat trick for his first multigoal game in two years. And get this, he did it in 5:24 of play. BU went on to win the game 8-4, and Amonte took home the Beanpot MVP. Of course, he had success beyond the tournament, putting together an impressive career line of 56-70-126 in just 79 games. After two years with the Terriers, his collegiate career came to an early end when he was given the opportunity to play in the NHL. He is remembered most as a prolific scorer for the Chicago Blackhawks, scoring at least 30 goals five times and 40 goals three times in his Windy City career.
Amonte retired from the NHL in 2007 and now coaches the Thayer Academy varsity hockey team in Braintree, Mass.
Forward: Joe Cavanagh, Harvard, 1967-71
When NCAA rules kept freshmen, including Cavanagh, from competing in varsity sports, the Crimson forward was hardly deterred. In each of the following three years, he earned All-American first team honors and led his team in scoring. By the time Cavanagh had finished his career, he was the all-time Harvard leader in assists (he now ranks third), second all-time in points (now fifth), and third all-time in goals (now 14th). While some of his school records have fallen, his Beanpot mark has stood the test of time. Cavanagh still holds the all-time record for points scored in a Beanpot career, despite the fact that he only competed in six games, rather than eight. He compiled a 3-5-8 line in the Crimson's 1969 title run, earning him Beanpot MVP honors. In the four other games, he put together 11 more points on four goals and seven assists, bringing his total to the 19 points that no one has managed to touch in the 42 years since. Cavanagh attempted to make the 1972 U.S. Olympic hockey team, but broke his wrist in a practice with the squad and decided to pass up a professional career in ice hockey.
Since forgoing his hockey career, Cavanagh has found success as an attorney. He still practices law and lives with his family in Warwick, Rhode Island.
Seventh Man: Rod Isbister, Forward, Northeastern University, 1982-86
Isbister earns the seventh man spot for contributing to two NU title runs in the 1980s. In the 1984 tournament, he led the Huskies over Harvard in the opening round by scoring what would be the eventual game-winning goal. Northeastern would go on to win the title that year. Of course, what really draws the eye to Isbister as a candidate for the seventh man is his performance in the 1985 tournament. The seventh man has to exceed expectations and go above and beyond the call of duty. In Isbister's second title run with the Huskies he did just that by playing with a broken thumb throughout the entire tournament. In the championship game, he assisted on NU's final two goals in a 4-2 victory over BU. Without Isbister's gritty effort, the Huskies might have missed out on their second consecutive Beanpot crown. Thankfully, the forward fought through pain to make his contribution, ultimately earning All-New England and All-East honors that year. He finished his career as Northeastern's third-highest scorer.
Following his Northeastern career, Isbister played six games for the AHL's St. Catharine's Saints. He later went on to coach one season for UMass-Boston.
Coach: Jack Parker, Boston University, 1974-Present
There was no real question about who would be leading this squad of all-timers, as Parker has been a dominant force throughout Beanpot history, both on the ice and behind the bench. He helped lead the Terriers to three consecutive Beanpot titles as a player from 1966-68, then took over as the team's head coach in 1974 and won 21 more. That stretch of 21 titles as head coach includes a record six consecutive Beanpot crowns from 1995 through 2000. Parker has been named NCAA Coach of the Year three times, and has led the Terriers to three NCAA titles. In 2009, he won his 800th game as a head coach, becoming only the third coach to do so. He was elected to the Beanpot Hall of Fame in 2005.
Parker is still in charge of the Terriers and is looking to help the team win the 30th Beanpot title in school history. Regardless of what happens in the remainder of his career, Parker will always be a beloved and revered figure in the pantheon of Boston sports.
So there you have it, folks. The Beanpot All-Time team has been assembled and is prepared to take on all challengers. The blend of stalwart defense and dynamic offense, all led by the greatest coach in Beanpot history, will strike fear into the hearts of all opponents.
Nevertheless, we know these are some fierce rivalries and we are eager to hear what you have to say. Share your thoughts on the Beanpot All-Time team in the comments below.
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