By Tim Healey/DFP Staff
The Boston University men’s hockey team dismissed No. 9 Northeastern University, 4-2, Saturday at Matthews Arena to complete the two-game weekend sweep, the first time the Terriers have done that all season. The wins set up another trip to Indiana to play the University of Notre Dame in a one-game playoff, the first round of the Hockey East tournament.
In a reversal from most games this year — but similar to what happened Friday — most things went well for BU. Here’s a specific look.
A day after the sophomore winger was benched, Lane — who joked he was well rested — came out flying as the No. 2 left wing. He netted two goals, including a nifty move around NU goalie Clay Witt after forcing a turnover at the defensive blue line for the second.
Check back here Monday or read that day’s Daily Free Press for more on Lane.
He matched sophomore Sean Maguire’s 31-save performance Friday night with 39 stops of his own, setting up what seems to be a tough decision Quinn will have to make next weekend in terms of who will be between the pipes.
O’Connor likely wants Northeastern’s first goal back — the puck bounced off his pad, over his leg and bounded past the goal line — but other than that he was smooth. He showed off his quick lateral movement on several occasions, and snuffed out one Husky chance when he covered a puck from his stomach and absorbed several whacks from opposing sticks.
It was the seventh win of the season for O’Connor. BU has 10.
The man advantage has been a point of weakness for the Terriers ever since sophomore defenseman Matt Grzelcyk went down before the start of the second semester, but Saturday they rebounded from Friday’s 0-for-7 effort by filling the column early.
Six seconds after NU forward John Stevens went off for tripping, Lane finished a rebound created by freshman defenseman Doyle Somerby’s shot from the blue line. The goal gave BU a 1-0 lead at 5:13 in the first.
“It’s being ready, it’s being alert, it’s taking advantage of those quick opportunities,” BU coach David Quinn said of the goal. “And we did that.”
BU finished the night 1-for-3 on the power play.
Following Friday night’s four-man “sit-down crew,” as Quinn termed it, four more Terriers did not play Saturday as punishment for breaking a team rule. Sophomore Danny O’Regan, freshman Brendan Collier, freshman Kevin Duane and senior Matt Ronan all sat.
Freshman T.J. Ryan also did not play due to lingering issues of his concussion from last month.
Despite utilizing just 14 skaters, BU pulled together just fine.
“When something like this happens, teams usually play better,” Quinn said. “There’s urgency, there’s a feeling of uh-oh. When you have that uh-oh feeling, you pretty much simplify things.”
Quinn said heading into the weekend that the less traveling the team had to do the better, but once the final weekend played out, the Terriers found out they will have to go to the school farthest away: Notre Dame.
The Fighting Irish beat Boston College, 2-1 in overtime, Saturday.
“I’m excited that we won two hockey games and we feel the way we do tonight and I’m excited to be in the playoffs,” Quinn said. “Those one-game situations, anything can happen. So I’m excited to go to Notre Dame. In a long-winded answer, yes, I’m excited to go to Notre Dame.”