Three Thoughts: BU’s weekend split with UConn

For a deeper rundown of how BU fared against UConn last weekend, check out our From The FreeP post from this morning.

The short version is the Terriers snagged a 2-1 win away from home, only to lose 4-0 at home the following night. There’s a lot to digest from what unfolded, so we tried to sift through some of the minutiae. Without further ado, check it out:

Three Thoughts

1.) We saw junior defenseman Brien Diffley get the start in Saturday’s loss, filling in for classmate John MacLeod, who apparently is dealing with a nagging injury. MacLeod had been playing well alongside senior captain Doyle Somerby as of late, totaling three assistsĀ and a +5 rating in nine games. We’re going to guess that MacLeod will sit out Tuesday’s game versus Harvard if he truly is injured. We’ll try to get more information on his status before the game.

2.) Well, we finally saw freshman goaltender Jake Oettinger have a rough outing at home. Oettinger let up four goals on Saturday after going over 204 minutes without a goal allowed at Agganis to start his career. It was a shame to see his streak come to an end, especially in that fashion, but we have no doubt Oettinger will bounce back on Tuesday or down the road.

3.) Going off of that, it was comforting to see junior netminder Connor LaCouvee play so well in Friday’s win at the XL Center. He made 28 saves on 29 shots, often making acrobatic plays to deny the Huskies. Coach Quinn and junior defenseman Brandon Hickey noted that LaCouvee was extremely focused in practice once he found out he would get the start. Having the capable LaCouvee behind Oettinger will likely prove to be huge as the season wears on.

The Small Five

1.) In Saturday’s defeat, BU’s top line of freshman Patrick Harper and sophomores Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson and Jordan Greenway attempted 16 of the Terriers’ 37 shots. That’s astounding and lopsided to say the least, but this factoid becomes even more concerning when it’s noted that BU’s six D-men attempted 11 shots. That means BU’s bottom three lines only got 10 shots on goals — that’s just not good enough.

2.) The defensive partnership between sophomore Charlie McAvoy and freshman Chad Krys is so smooth. Both are cool as can be on the puck, and their instincts on the blue line are spectacular. The charge before them now is if they can lock down opponents’ top forwards, much like they did with UConn’s Max Letunov and Tage Thompson.

3.) One of the hardest things to measure is how a team bounces back when adversity rolls around. Specifically, when BU was losing 2-0, then 3-0, then 4-0 against UConn, there just wasn’t that much life in the squad. That’s concerning, especially because Quinn’s teams have historically been fantastic in the third period.

4.) It’s team to seriously consider what toll widespread injuries are taking on BU. Clayton Keller, Ryan Cloonan and Nikolas Olsson are all out, and they’re top-nine forwards. We honestly don’t know when they’ll be back, and it seems as though Quinn isn’t 100 percent sure either. BU needs their grit, scoring touch and hockey sense back — badly.

5.) Tuesday’s game against Harvard is no slouch, and Terrier fans would be foolish to view it as a guaranteed two points. BU snagged a shock 6-5 win last season, but the Crimson defeated BC last weekend. It wasn’t even close, as Harvard won 5-2.

10 thoughts on “Three Thoughts: BU’s weekend split with UConn”

  1. who in their right mind would consider Harvard a guaranteed 2 points? Especially after Saturday. Beyond grateful if we pull it out

    Real disappointed in Ottenger’s play of late. started in the game at NU. i know he is only 17 and i think he will be real good for us, but right now he is struggling. that third unconn goal was shades of jason tapp. he even knew it was a bad goal

  2. It will be a tough game Tuesday BU will have to bring there A game. They need to be opportunistic in front of the net not just get shots but get rebounds. Don’t worry about jake he is the best goalie in the country that said Connor is very good too coach will make that call. The goalie problem is a good one. Can’t wait for Tommorow Saturday’s loss has been bothering me so much go bu???

  3. Over the last two years, I have been putting extra weight/emphasis on this 2016-2017 season because I feel, although many other talented players will be coming in for 2017-2018, there are some major “flight risks” to the NHL after April of 2017. So, I want to win some serious hardware while we have such an amazingly talented team. Despite this setback, I still think it will happen.

  4. One thing we need to do is stop concerning ourselves with pro prospect ratings and dealing the season and games at hand. If players do really well, they might go. Until they do, stop focusing on that and focusing on what they are doing here.

    The team right now really misses Keller’s speed and skills, Olsson’s grit and tenacity and Cloonan’s overall play, despite a lack of productive numbers.
    There is not much experience or leadership due to the lack of upper classmen. Tommy Kelley is working his butt off every shift, but he is a 3rd or 4th line guy.
    JFK does everything right, is a tremendous all-around player, but hasn’t produced numbers.
    Bellows is overdue for a bust out. He and Harper have great releases!

    I went to both UConn games. The powerplay is just much too casual, particularly moving the puck out of the defensive zone. And dump-and-chase is a lame for the talent at hand.

    McAvoy looked world class in Hartford, and was poor at Agganis. But he can take charge of a game. So can Fabbro, and he needs to start asserting himself.

    The Crimson will be a good test. Vesey is gone, but Donato’s kid is a terrific player.

  5. Ottenger ha not looked any way a top goalie at any time. He was not even the starter in this years Jrs as the BC goalie was number one. ( Why does BC always get the better goalie ???). Yes, he does look like Tapp a lot. Always on his knees way before the shot is made. Lacouvee showed how to play goalie Friday as he was much fluid and not in the paddle all the time. Maybe in time he will be much better. 17 is young but did not BC have a goalie at that age who was great for them ??? It has been very frustrating year so far. Bellows also looks only so so. Only can get better. No goals last game ??? What ???

  6. Few weeks ago I went to go see bc play and I can say this now Jake is definitely the better goalie not even close woll is down 2 mins before the shot even happens when u can look into it.. Jake will be the best goaltender in ncaa … my opinion.. I injuries taking a toll on us we will be fine at the end and yes u see bc record but look who they have played.. let’s go bu..

  7. Jake is a great goalie he has played well in several games this year. He has several weekly honors and shut outs to prove it. He struggled a little bit last game but did not play horrible. Coach Quinn decided to play Connor who played very good on Friday I see the goaltending to be a strength of this team not a weakness. I also think Woll is a great goalie as well but I don’t rembeer anyone pegging him above Jake this summer. Jake will be the starter on that team in my view he is the best goalie in the country

  8. I think Ottenger has the potential to be a great goalie. But, alla Nobles and McKersie, having two goalies is only a strength if both are playing well. That means no soft goals that deflate the team. Lately both have let ones in that they wish they had back. That third one last night seconds after we went ahead is exactly what I am talking about. So we shall see. Neither is solid at this point. I thought Ottenger would be after the back to back shutouts but now I am not so sure. He is susceptible to being beat high stick side. NU did it 3x.

  9. For the Son of Caesar Carlaci … Oettinger played more games for the US. 18 Jr. National Team than Woll.
    Oettinger was the goalie in the World Juniors. Woll didn’t play.
    Oettinger is the higher rated goalie according the NHL Scouting Bureau.
    So what are you talking out?

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