By Kevin Dillon/DFP Staff
Boston University men’s hockey junior assistant captain Alex Chiasson agreed to terms with the Dallas Stars of the National Hockey League on a three-year entry-level contract on Monday, ending his hockey career at BU.
The professional contract ends a successful career with the Terriers for the 6-foot-3 forward, who totaled 99 points in 108 games played. The Stars’ former-second-round draft choice said he made his decision on Monday after a meeting with BU coach Jack Parker.
“We had a good conversation and afterwards I cleared up my mind and made sure it was the right decision for me that I was ready to leave and go on for a new challenge and a new experience,” Chiasson said. “[Parker] thought if in my heart that’s what I wanted to do then he was going to support me through it.”
I took my decision [Monday] actually. I had a meeting with coach [Monday] afternoon. We had a good conversation and afterwards I cleared up my mind and made sure it was the right decision for me that I was ready to leave and go on for a new challenge and a new experience.
On what Parker thought of Chiasson leaving early:
I mean coach is really supportive. We had a good discussion and he wanted the best for me. He thought if in my heart that’s what I wanted to do then he was going to support me through it. Obviously I have learned a lot and I think I’ve grown up as a player and as a person under his charge. I thought that he needed to be the first guy that I wanted to share my thoughts with and that’s what I did. I think he deserved to know first what my decision was going to be and I wanted to see what he thought and what could be the best for me and he was really supportive. I can’t say enough about him how I grew as a player and as a person and I learned so much about myself. It was a good conversation, he was really supportive and like I said he was happy for me and I’m sure I will get to see him again down the road for sure.
On his experience at BU:
The last three years have flown by. It was hard for me to make a decision because I have made some great friends here and I have met some awesome people and it was definitely a great experience to know it’s probably the best three years I’ve had so far. So that was great. I really love the school, love the city, my parents are here pretty much every weekend and it was a good experience not just for me but for my family. I think we appreciate what BU gave to me and I’m almost done with my degree and it was something really important for me and my family that even though I leave I have to come back during the summer and finish my economics degree. You never know what is going to happen with hockey and sometimes you kind of need – you’re not going to play hockey for 30 or 40 years so I think there is always something to rely on and like I said, BU was the best thing, for me, to happen. I learned so much about life and it was more than hockey really, I grew up as a person and learned how to be on my own and live away from home. I can’t say enough about this school and the opportunity it gave me as a player and as a person.
On why he chose college hockey over the QMJHL:
I think for me it was the best thing to do. I thought, I was a tall guy and if you look over my three years I think my progression was great. I learned my freshman year and my sophomore year and even this year I learned a lot. I think after this year and looking back, it was the best decision. I’m not saying that major junior is not the right way to go but for myself I think it was definitely what I needed to do and obviously it paid off. Without coming here I probably wouldn’t be where I wanted to be, next year or in the future and that’s something that I’m going to really look down to and I’m going to be really proud of that. If there’s anything I could tell anyone, it’s that college hockey and coming to BU was definitely the best experience that you could ever have.
On his plan for the rest of the year with the Stars:
I’m going to go with the Texas Stars. Probably finish their season. They are out of the playoffs so there’s about eight or nine games left. So I’m going to finish there, train, get my feet wet, get rolling and try to see where I fit in professional hockey and see how that works. I think it’s going to be good for me to see where I’m at personally and what I need to work on this summer and obviously my goal next year is to make a good impression at camp and try to go in the Stars right away. You never know, you can’t read the crystal ball and see what’s going to happen. I like where I’m at. I like what I’ve learned here in my three years, so we’ll see what happens. I’m excited for a new challenge and it should be a good experience.
By Kevin Dillon/DFP Staff
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Boston University men’s hockey senior captain Chris Connolly is not a big guy. He is only 5-foot-9, and he weighs just 170 pounds. But packed inside one of BU’s smallest players is the leadership, character and attitude that made him one of the Terriers’ most important players over his four-year career.
As the final horn sounded at the Xcel Energy Center after BU’s 7-3 loss to No. 6 University of Minnesota in the NCAA Regional Semifinal, it signaled the end of the career of one of the most respected leaders the BU hockey program has ever had.
“We thought he was going to be a captain of the team as a senior when we recruited him,” said BU coach Jack Parker. “He knows how to do the right thing. He knows how to be a good teammate and a good captain, which is sometimes not being a good teammate. He is one of the best captains we have ever had. . . . We’re very, very proud that he wore our uniform.”
By Arielle Aronson/DFP Staff
ST. PAUL, Minn. — After the No. 8/10 Boston University men’s hockey team saw its season end in a 7-3 loss to the No. 6 University of Minnesota, junior assistant captain Alex Chiasson did not want to talk about the number of penalties BU took in the game or the turnovers the Terriers made. After all, he said, it did not really matter at that point. BU will not play another game this season, and it will not have a chance to fix its mistakes.
Instead, Chiasson opened up about his teammates, about the trials the Terriers went through during the 2011-12 season, about the adversity BU faced all year but refused to ever use as an excuse for poor play. Chiasson spoke about how for this Terrier squad, the season was more about the soul of the team than the actual results on the ice.
“Right now, it doesn’t matter what hockey means,” Chiasson said. “It’s about becoming a team and how guys grew up and how guys became leaders, how many character guys we had in this locker room. That’s what you have to look at.”
By Annie Maroon/DFP Staff
ST. PAUL, Minn. — On Saturday, the No. 8/10 Boston University men’s hockey team’s season ended with a 7-3 loss to the No. 6 University of Minnesota in the NCAA Regionals. Minnesota outshot the Terriers 42-34 and scored two empty-net goals to ice the game, which saw BU rack up 29 penalty minutes.
“Kind of a bizarre game in that there were times when both teams had pretty good territorial advantages and both teams looked okay,” said BU coach Jack Parker. “I thought Minnesota had the best of it as the game progressed. I was really impressed with the Minnesota goaltender. I thought he had a nice night for them.”
About six minutes into the first period, senior goalie Kieran Millan lost track of a rebound that wound up behind him, and Gopher forward Kyle Rau poked it into the net nearly six minutes into the first.
Minnesota (27-13-1) led 1-0 through the rest of the first as each team picked up three penalties. Then, with Gopher forward Nico Sacchetti in the box for goaltender interference, junior forward Wade Megan evened the score for BU (23-15-1) 7:49 into the second.
By Annie Maroon/DFP Staff
ST. PAUL, Minn. — The matchup between an eighth and ninth seed in should be, by its nature, one of the closest games of any NCAA tournament. The ninth-seeded Boston University men’s hockey team has plenty in common with its West Regional semifinal opponent, the eighth-seed University of Minnesota, but the differences between the teams’ styles will likely determine which one advances to play on Sunday.
Both teams are coming off semifinal losses, and both the Terriers (23-14-1, 17-10-1 Hockey East) and the Gophers (26-13-1, 20-8-0 WCHA) rely on a strong offensive attack. The Terriers’ 3.58 goals per game lead Hockey East, and the Gophers’ 3.55 rank second in the WCHA.
But while Minnesota’s defense is a difference-maker – holding opponents to 2.2 goals on 24.6 shots per game – BU leans more heavily on its goaltending, giving up 34.6 shots per game while taking 32.
BU senior goalie Kieran Millan has been up to that challenge all year, especially in the Hockey East playoffs, but his 39 saves weren’t enough in the conference semifinals, where BU lost 5-3 to the University of Maine. Four of the Black Bears’ goals in that game came on the power play, and BU coach Jack Parker said special teams will be crucial in Saturday’s game.
“In general, our power play has been a big part of our success all year long up until our recent outage, so to speak . . . so we’re trying to turn that around,” Parker said. “Penalty kill and special teams are always huge in these types of games, so we’d like to stay out of the box and take advantage of any power-play opportunities we get.”
By Emily Overholt/DFP Staff
Former Boston University men’s hockey forward Corey Trivino is no longer being charged with assault with intent to rape, the most serious of seven charges stemming from a Dec. 11 incident, due to insufficient evidence, officials said.
Brighton District Attorney spokesman Jake Wark said there was no evidence suggesting Trivino intended to use force in efforts to rape the victim.
“We have an ethical obligation not to pursue a charge that we know we can’t prove,” he said. “It’s certainly not a reflection of the victim’s credibility or anything of that nature.”
To all of our followers,
We greatly appreciate your support all season long as we have done our best to cover this team. As many of you know, we are student journalists who do our best to provide you with the most thorough coverage of BU hockey as possible. We do not get paid for any of our work, and as such, we have to pay for all of our travel expenses throughout the season out of our own pockets. The Daily Free Press is not affiliated or funded by Boston University. All three of us are currently planning on going to St. Paul to cover BU in the NCAA Tournament as we have been doing all year, but travel, especially at the last minute, is very expensive. We are trying to pay for this trip to St. Paul on our own, but any financial help we can get would be much appreciated. We are hoping to keep the trip to about $750 per person with flights, food and transportation within St. Paul. One of our parents is helping us with the hotel. For anyone interested in donating, please contribute via the PayPal button at the top of the column on the right-hand side of the blog. If there is any extra money at the end of the St. Paul trip, it will go toward a possible trip to Tampa Bay for the Frozen Four or to The Daily Free Press if BU does not make it to the Frozen Four.
Again, thank you all for your support this season. It has made our job covering BU hockey that much more enjoyable.
The Boston Hockey Blog
By Arielle Aronson/DFP Staff
Despite losing in the Hockey East Semifinals Friday night, senior captain Chris Connolly of the No. 5 Boston University men’s hockey team was all smiles Sunday afternoon.
The reason? Connolly and the Terriers are headed to Connolly’s home state of Minnesota for the West Regional of the 2012 NCAA Tournament in St. Paul.
After a two-year absence from the national tournament, the Terriers earned an at-large bid due to a 23-14-1 overall record this season. BU is the ninth overall seed in the tournament and will face eighth-seeded University of Minnesota on Saturday at 4 p.m. Central Standard Time.
Fourth-seed University of North Dakota and 14th-seed Western Michigan University fill out the rest of the West Regional bracket.
“This is quite a field, and I think every bracket has tough draws,” said BU coach Jack Parker. “Certainly ours is a tough draw for everybody.”