From the FreeP: New first-line combination settles in

By Sam Dykstra/DFP Staff

Nine different forwards on the No. 15 Boston University men’s hockey team have come together to form nine separate first-line combinations in the 34 games of the 2010-11 season. The latest trio of junior left wing Chris Connolly, freshman center Sahir Gill and freshman right wing/center Charlie Coyle have combined for 52 of the possible 102 starts at the top of the lines sheet, but before last weekend’s series against Providence College, those three had never played together on a line.

Put that relative inexperience with one another alongside their collective goal-scoring struggles heading into the end of the season – Coyle was the latest member of the newly formed line to light the lamp, with his last goal coming way back on Jan. 21– and it’s easy to understand how those struggles continued against the Friars, resulting in a pointless weekend for all three.

“It’s hard for guys to hit it off right away,” said Connolly, after BU’s 3-1 win over University of Vermont on Saturday. “Guys are used to kind of doing their own thing. Everybody’s their own guy and brings something to the line. Charlie’s a big strong kid with a lot of talent. Sahir’s a great playmaker. I just try to provide some energy for the line, get after the D a little bit. It takes a little bit [to gel].”