End of Game, BC Wins 6-3: Well, BC just outclassed Northeastern in this one. Give the Huskies a huge amount of credit for making it a close contest early in the third period, but ultimately BC was just a more talented squad, and they proved it over 60 minutes.
Good choice on giving the tournament MVP to Kevin Roy and his five goals, even if it was in a losing effort. However, BC’s depth trumped Roy’s stellar play on Monday, and they’re the ones lifting the Beanpot right now. Perhaps most impressively, BC has never lost a Beanpot final that they’ve been a part of.
Well, thanks for sticking around our live blog, folks. Hope we were able to shed a little light on what’s going on on the ice.
3rd Period, 5:15, BC 5-3: Once again, we said Gaudreau would have to figure into this game, and with two goals he has in a big way. That was a more vintage effort from him, being the trailer and finding himself in the right place at the right time.
Now, with time quickly running out, Northeastern’s going to have to really bear down and make something happen to catch the Eagles. Otherwise it will be BC raising the Beanpot for the fourth consecutive year.
3rd Period, 15:00, BC 4-3: Well, it would be an improbable comeback, but it’s certainly in the works.
After BC takes an ill-advised penalty, Northeastern makes them pay, cutting the Eagles’ lead to just one goal with a lot of time left to play. NU looks completely renewed early in the period, keeping their legs moving and skating well, while BC looks to be back on its heels a little bit.
3rd Period, 19:45, 4-2 BC: Well, the Huskies needed a quick goal to open the period, and Roy stepped up. In the process, he becomes the first player to score at least five goals in a Beanpot tournament since 1973.
In actuality, that’s a pick that should probably be stopped by Milner. It was just a long-range wrist shot that beat him, without even the benefit of a screen. But, somehow, the seeing-eye shot found its way over Milner’s right shoulder and into the short right corner of the net.
Second Intermission, BC 4-1: Well, we’re going to let this tweet speak for itself. For the record, Northeastern’s president is Dr. Joseph E. Aoun, and apparently he has an awesome sense of humor.
[tweet https://twitter.com/billbarnwell/status/301146386630582272 align=’center’]
End of 2nd Period, BC 4-1: And here’s where the pace of the game becomes important.
For a while it’s seemed like the high-tempo pace of the game was not well-suited for Northeastern. And that finally catches up with them at the end of the second period, as the Eagles score another two goals in rapid succession. The second (their fourth of the night) came off a bad misplay by Rawlings, who tried to hand the puck off rather than just covering it.
So, that may have taken some of the wind out of the sails of the Huskies and the third period in general, as BC now has a commanding lead to go with its dominant puck-possession play heading into the game’s final third.
2nd Period, 1:08, BC 3-1: Well, that was certainly an innocent-looking play, but it leads to a goal and another two-score lead for BC.
Not much Northeastern goaltender Chris Rawlings could do about that one. It looked like the puck, which was already knuckling, was tipped twice on its way to the goal.
2nd Period, 4:40, BC 2-1: Well, Roy made it happen last week with a hat trick, and now he’s picking up right where he left off.
Roy flat out beats BC goaltender Parker Milner with his wrist shot, waiting for a little screen to develop before beating Milner over his left shoulder.
2nd Period, 5:46, BC 2-0: For the record, that second goal was indeed credited to Gaudreau as an unassisted tally.
So, just like we said pregame, Gaudreau ends up playing a big role in the game. And, despite the best efforts of the Huskies’ defense to blanket No. 13 and keep him off the puck, he still makes it happen all by himself.
2nd period, 7:52, BC 2-0: No sooner had we mentioned the conspicuous absence of Gaudreau than he makes something happen for BC, setting up (possibly scoring) a goal to put BC up 2-0.
First, Bill Arnold takes advantage of a turnover and some subsequently sloppy defense on the part of Northeastern, putting home a one-timer to draw first blood for the Eagles. Then, Gaudreau makes it happen the old fashioned way, putting puck into the Northeastern crease before taking a couple whacks at the goaltender’s pads to tap one over the line.
So, for all their dominant play, BC finally have a lead to show for it with just under eight minutes left in the second period.
2nd Period, 9:54: Although he’s done a good job on the forecheck today, it’s hard to notice that we haven’t taken notice of Johnny Gaudreau much.
The talented offensive player has mostly been kept quiet in the offensive zone, so that’s something of a surprise. Give some credit to the Huskies defense for keeping him blanketed, and giving him the extra bump every opportunity they’ve had.
2nd Period, 11:48: The period began with some furious back-and-forth play, including a golden opportunity from point-blank range for Northeastern’s Garrett Vermeersch.
However, Northeaster has also been very, very lucky. First, Colton Saucerman drew a tripping penalty against BC when the real culprit seemed to be his own shoelaces. Then, the Huskies got away with a clear penalty after having six men on the ice for several seconds.
Overall, BC’s gotten the better of play, but it’s been slightly more even. However, the tempo would seem to favor BC, who’s better suited to play an up-and-down, shootout style of hockey.
End of 1st Period: Tempers flare as the whistle sounds due to a late shot on goal, but at the end of a period we’re still tied with no scoring.
That being said, BC has clearly, undeniably had the better of play so far. They’ve simply had the puck in the Northeastern zone for most of the game thus far, as the Huskies are lucky to still be even with the Eagles. After a couple goal-mouth scrums, BC could easily be up by at least a couple goals.
For BC, no one player looks particularly dangerous, but Gaudreau looks like he’s really trying hard to find open space, to no avail. Northeastern, meanwhile, needs to find a way to slow the pace of the game and hold on to the puck a little bit. Saponari has given them an occasional threat, but the rest of the team hasn’t looked up to the task so far.
However, despite BC’s dominance, we’re still tied and Northeastern still very much has life if they can get it together.
1st Period, 2:55: Looks like someone on the Huskies is going to go to the box for a hooking call, but more on that later.
Northeastern is finally getting some opportunistic offense together, but it’s mostly just from picking off errant pucks in BC’s zone. Likewise, their defense has had trouble standing up the Eagles at the red line, but is doing a good job of backchecking and getting sticks and bodies in front of passes.
Vinny Saponari has really been Northeastern’s standout so far. A couple times already he’s turned on the jets, showing some impressive speed up the boards and putting BC on their heels. Roy needs to be looking for the front of the net to find a rebound or pass from Saponari.
1st Period, 9:36: Halfway through the first period and Northeastern has yet to get a shot on goal, while BC has already had a couple opportunities to poke at loose pucks in front of the goal mouth.
In short, right now BC is just outclassing Northeastern, as the latter wasn’t able to get set up at all in the offensive zone on their first power play chance. Northeastern probably needs to simplify its play a little bit and just look to play some puck possession games to try and get the puck into the BC zone.
1st Period, 13:38: Roy gets booked early for a well-deserved penalty, as he just rolled right over the BC player.
On the ensuing power play, both teams can probably take positives away. For the first minute or so BC did well to set up in the offensive zone, nearly getting a goal on a tip that went just wide of the net. On Northeastern’s end, they were able to disrupt BC during the second half of the power play, using an effective forecheck to waste some extra ticks in the BC end of the ice.
7:30 p.m.: Alright folks, we’re almost ready to drop the puck here, as the BC Eagles will try to win their fourth consecutive Beanpot.
During the pregame Kevin Roy of Northeastern was profiled, and he did indeed look dangerous a week ago, netting a hat trick. However, Johnny Gaudreau is not only one of the best players in Hockey East, but in the entire country. He was kept relatively quiet during the semifinal, having at least one golden opportunity stopped at the goal, so it would be a safe bet that he won’t be shut down again.
12:45 p.m. ET: The Beanpot will wrap up on Monday night as Boston College takes on Northeastern at TD Garden at 7:30 p.m.
The Eagles will be going for their fourth straight Beanpot championship. Only two teams have accomplished that feat before — Boston University rallied off six straight from 1995 to 2000 and four straight from 1970 to 1973. BC matched its best streak in 2012 with three straight, which the Eagles had also done from 1963 to 1965.
The Eagles and Huskies come into the Beanpot championship game on different ends of the Hockey East landscape. BC is in first place with 25 points, while Northeastern is dead last with 11.
In the first round of the Beanpot, BC took down Harvard 4-1, while the Huskies shocked BU 3-2.
Stay here for all the action, and tune in to NESN for coverage starting at 7 p.m.