Games at Madison Square Garden, Fenway Park highlight BU’s 2013-14 schedule

By Tim Healey/DFP Staff

David Quinn’s first year as the Boston University men’s hockey head coach is sure to be a memorable one.

The program released its 2013-14 schedule Thursday, and there are plenty of big games throughout. Besides the switch to Hockey East’s new template — schools will play conference opponents just twice — the Terriers have games at Madison Square Garden and Fenway Park, as well as non-league contests at home vs. Wisconsin and North Dakota, among others.

For the full schedule, check out the “2013-14 schedule” tab to the left.

BU’s annual season-opening exhibition against a Canadian college will be against St. Francis Xavier on Saturday, Oct. 5. It will open the regular season at home vs. the University of Massachusetts the following Friday.

Quinn’s crew won’t hit the road until it visits Michigan and Michigan State on Oct. 25 and 26, respectively.

The fourth edition of Red Hot Hockey, the biennial BU-Cornell game at MSG, will be Nov. 30, the Saturday after Thanksgiving. The Terriers will participate in Frozen Fenway for the first time since 2010 when they “host” Maine at Fenway.

Wisconsin (Oct. 19), North Dakota (Nov. 22-23), Bentley (Dec. 13) and Dartmouth (Jan. 8) highlight the Agganis Arena schedule. Additionally, future Hockey East member University of Connecticut will visit Nov. 17.

The first round of the Beanpot — which will be against Boston College — is Feb. 3.

BU will visit the University of Notre Dame for the first time as a Hockey East foe Feb. 21-22 before wrapping up its regular season with a home-and-home against Northeastern University Feb. 28-March 1.

Report: Mike Bavis resigns from position as associate head coach

By Meredith Perri/DFP Staff

After 15 seasons on the coaching staff of the Boston University men’s hockey team, associate head coach Mike Bavis has resigned, according to U.S. Hockey Report.

Bavis’ resignation comes approximately two months after Jack Parker announced his retirement and BU named David Quinn as the new head coach of the Terriers.

Following Parker’s announcement on March 11, Bavis said he felt he was very qualified for the head coaching position. 

“Over the years I’ve had to handle the team on Coach’s behalf [while Parker was out for medical reasons],” Bavis said. “I feel pretty confident the players have responded to me. In some ways I think I’m a little more uniquely positioned to deal with this. As the last couple of years have shown, this is more than just a hockey job.”

When BU announced Quinn as the new head coach on March 26, Quinn was asked if he was concerned about how Bavis’ would react to not getting the job.

“I don’t think there will be anything to smooth over,” Quinn said. “Mike and I have been in a long, long relationship before either one of us got into coaching, so it’s something that Mike and I will certainly handle in the way we normally handle all of our life situations, and I’m looking forward to talking with him.”

Bavis became the associate head coach four seasons ago. Prior to that, he worked as an assistant coach for a decade and played for the Terriers from 1989-93. During his time playing, BU won three Beanpots, won one Hockey East title and participated in four NCAA tournaments.

In the beginning of the 2012-13 season, Bavis filled in as head coach during a home-and-home sweep of the University of Massachusetts while Parker dealt with a sore back.

Updated: Bobo Carpenter, son of former NHL All-Star Bobby Carpenter, commits to BU

By Kevin Dillon/DFP Staff

New Boston University coach David Quinn has added some scoring to the future, as forward Bobo Carpenter — son of former NHL all-star Bobby Carpenter — committed to BU Friday. The 16-year-old North Reading resident could come to BU as early as 2015.

Carpenter was second on his team in scoring as a sophomore last season, recording 16 goals and 14 assists in 24 games with Austin Preparatory School. He had his best game on Feb. 21 when he scored four goals in a 9-0 win over Falmouth high school.

“He is a coach’s dream,” said Austin Prep hockey coach Lou Finocchiaro, adding that Carpenter will be a captain as a junior next season. “His work ethic is phenomenal. His positiveness on the ice, off the ice, in the locker room is impeccable … He is a phenomenal hockey player.

“[Quinn] is going to be extremely, extremely happy with his choice of Bobo Carpenter when it is all said and done. I think he has got a diamond in the rough.”

According to Finocchiaro, who is a former Merrimack College assistant coach, Boston College, Providence College and the University of New Hampshire all showed interest in Carpenter.

Bobo’s father Bobby made history as the first U.S. citizen to jump directly to the NHL from high school. He spent 18 seasons in the NHL, including four with the Boston Bruins, and scored 320 career goals. Bobo’s sister, Alex, is an All-American at Boston College and led Hockey East in scoring as a sophomore in 2012-13.

Carpenter is the second player to commit to BU after Jack Parker retired, following forward Nick Roberto’s decision last month to come to BU this fall.

From the FreeP: Oksanen scoots into place on, off ice

By Annie Maroon/DFP Staff

Despite being one of the Boston University men’s hockey team’s biggest defensemen in the 2012-13 season, Ahti Oksanen was also one of its mildest-mannered, with just 12 penalty minutes over 36 games.

However, the 6-foot-3 freshman said when he was growing up in Kirkkonummi, Finland, he looked up to an NHL defenseman known and feared for his mean streak.

“I always liked Chris Pronger,” Oksanen said, grinning. “I know everybody hates him, but I liked him.”

As BU senior defenseman Sean Escobedo pointed out, Oksanen may not be throwing any open-ice hits worthy of Pronger any time soon. But he has worked over the last year to adapt to the more physical style of North American hockey, trying to blend the offensive gifts he developed on a bigger ice surface in Finland with a stronger approach to playing defense.

Oksanen said he was disappointed with his first year at BU, in which he put up four goals and 13 assists. While he improved throughout the year, he acknowledged that his defense needed work early on.

In fact, Oksanen was a forward until four years ago, when a coach back in Finland suddenly decided otherwise. He said it took him a while to feel comfortable on the blue line, although he put up 14 goals and 27 assists for 41 points in the 2011-12 season with the Espoo Blues in Finland.

“[The coach] just said, ‘OK, Ahti, you’re on D today,’” Oksanen said. “And that was it. I never played forward again.”

For more on Oksanen and his progress throughout the year, including overcoming some language issues, go to dailyfreepress.com.