Moscatel’s first career goal years in the making

By Annie Maroon/DFP Staff

Senior forward Jake Moscatel figured he was due for a goal, but when he finally scored the first of his Boston University men’s hockey career on Friday, he found it didn’t measure up to the satisfaction of throwing someone into the boards.

“I still think I’d rather have a big hit out there, but anything to help the team,” Moscatel joked.

Moscatel hadn’t recorded a point in any of his nine games before Friday’s 4-2 win over Northeastern. As part of a fourth line – along with freshman Mike Moran and senior Ryan Santana – that doesn’t generate many scoring chances, he had just five shots in those nine games.

When a rebound bounced to him near the crease in the first period, though, Moscatel knew what to do, flipping it past Northeastern University goalie Chris Rawlings to give BU a 1-0 lead.

“To be honest with you, I thought that goal would come a long time ago,” Moscatel said. “I’ve been dreaming of being a BU hockey player my entire life and I think this was my 10th or 11th game, and it’s a pretty big scoring drought for me in my long hockey career, so I knew one was going to come, I guess.”

Before last year, Moscatel’s “long hockey career” at the collegiate level consisted of three semesters playing Division III at the University of New England, and one semester with the BU club team before joining the Terriers as a walk-on last year.

Despite his detour to UNE, in Maine, Moscatel said he always envisioned himself playing for BU. His grandfather worked for the university, and he grew up in Lexington, barely a half-hour drive from Agganis Arena.

At the beginning of this season, the chances of the 24-year-old Moscatel ever playing a game for the Terriers were slim. But when departures and injuries began to reshape BU’s lineup, Moscatel found himself making the first start of his career against Renssalaer Polytechnic Institute on Jan. 4.

He’s now played in BU’s last six games, previously accompanying junior defenseman Patrick MacGregor as the only other player in the lineup without a goal in his career.

When Moscatel came back to the bench after scoring, his teammates and coaches went out of their way to congratulate him. When he returned to the locker room after speaking to CBS Sports about his game, he was met with cheers that echoed down the hallway, even with the door closed.

Moscatel said senior forward Ben Rosen, whom he knew from juniors before coming to BU, was the first one leaning over the boards to congratulate him. He added, though, that the entire bench – plus junior defenseman Matt Ronan, his fellow healthy scratch for most of the year – was excited for him.

“We always get fired up,” Moscatel said. “We love goals.”

Parker said the team is hoping to see Moscatel, who will turn 25 in December, play one more year as a Terrier.

“We called him up from the BU club team, and now he’s a regular and he’s one of our most improved players, to the point that – he could have another year of eligibility and we are going to bring him back next year,” Parker said.

Moscatel said he wants to return next year, although there’s been a slight complication: BU’s records say he dressed for a game last year and used up that year of eligibility. He said he expects that to be worked out, though, and credited Parker for making his BU career possible.

“He knows how hard I’ve worked to get in the lineup and just prove myself and get a shot, and I owe a lot to him,” Moscatel said. “He’s been the best to me.”

That appreciation is mutual.

“We are very, very happy to have him, and we are happy it is working out for him, because obviously, it is working out for us,” Parker said.