Coming off a thrilling double overtime victory over Harvard University Monday night in the opening round of the Beanpot, the Boston University men’s hockey team took on the University of Massachusetts in a rematch of last week.
In the previous meeting between these Hockey East foes, the Terriers (15-11-3, 10-7-3 Hockey East) bested the Minutemen (12-16-2, 6-12-2 Hockey East) 3-2. Friday the two teams skated to a 3-3 tie.
BU head coach David Quinn was not pleased with the result of Friday’s game.
“A disappointing tie on our end obviously. You’re up 3-1 going into the third period. You just got to play a good solid period,” Quinn said. “I thought the game started changing a bit when we made it 3-1… I thought the game lulled us to sleep a little bit … We just didn’t have that killer instinct.”
Despite the Terriers being the hottest team in the nation, it would be the Minutemen who drew first blood.
Freshman defenseman Mario Ferraro intercepted a pass in the neutral zone and then passed the puck to sophomore forward Griff Jeszka who fired a shot from slot that beat BU sophomore goaltender Jake Oettinger at 12:15 in the first period.
It would not take long for BU to tie the score at one. Just under 35 seconds later freshman forward Shane Bowers converted a rebound opportunity from freshman forward Logan Cockerill for his 14th goal of the season. Freshman forward Hank Crone picked an assist on the goal.
BU scored one more time in the period. With 4.5 seconds left to play, Crone sent the puck to junior forward and assistant captain Bobo Carpenter who then scored on a breakaway to give BU a 2-1 lead heading into the first intermission.
BU doubled its lead just over two minutes into the second period while on the power play. Freshman forward Austin Albrecht got sent into the box one minute and 52 seconds in the period due to a cross-checking penalty.
Sophomore defenseman Dante Fabbro fired a shot from the point which was blocked by UMass’ freshman goaltender Matt Murray. Bowers tapped in the rebound and scored 10 seconds into the power play. Freshman forward Brady Tkachuk also received an assist.
Bowers now is tied for the lead among all freshman in the nation in goals with 15.
Quinn said he is pleased with the recent results of Bowers.
“He’s played very well,” Quinn said. “…That was a good line for us. It’s nice to see those freshmen contribute and get on the scoreboard.”
Bowers echoed his coach’s statement.
“I thought our line had a great game tonight,” Bowers said. “We had a lot of pressure and a lot of chances and we just couldn’t grab the win in the end.”
The Terries have now scored a power play goal in each of the last seven games.
Just over two minutes into the third period, UMass cut BU’s lead in half. Sophomore forward Jack Suter tipped in a shot from Albrecht. Freshman forward John Leonard also picked up an assist.
“Right from the get-go of the third, that first shift really set the tone,” Quinn said. “I thought we were sloppy [we] just didn’t play with that killer instinct.”
Almost two minutes later, UMass tied the game at three. Freshman forward Mitchell Chaffee passed the puck to redshirt senior forward Niko Ruo who then shot the puck. Oettinger saved the puck but Chaffee scored the rebound for his 12th of the season.
“We played a solid 40 [minutes], I thought we dominated the game but we got to play a full 60 [minutes},” Bowers said. “We kind of let our foot off the gas and we weren’t able to step on their throat and put them away. That’s something we got to change moving forward.”
BU successfully killed off both of its penalties on the night.
Neither team managed to score again either in regulation or in the overtime period, and the game ended in a 3-3 tie.
BU will play Northeastern University Monday in the Beanpot finals
“That was a big game tonight, a lot of league points on the line,” Bowers said. “We got one but that’s not what we wanted. We’re not happy with that. Moving forward we’ve got to come prepared and have a better game Monday, not only because it’s the Beanpot but we want to keep climbing the rankings this season.”