BU opens Hockey East tournament at UMass Lowell

The Boston University men’s hockey team had a golden opportunity to finish in the top four of the Hockey East heading into last weekend.

Maine had other plans, silencing the Terriers (14-16-4, 12-9-3) in a 6-0 shutout that bounced BU into the Hockey East tournament with a sour taste in its mouth.

The Terriers had the chance to eclipse UMass Lowell in the standings with a win against the Black Bears. The result was far from satisfactory, however, forcing BU to make the trek to Lowell for the quarterfinal round of the Hockey East tournament this weekend.

The best-of-three series will begin on Friday night at Tsongas Center, extend into Saturday night and conclude with a Sunday afternoon Game 3 if necessary.

“Lowell is a pretty good hockey team,” BU head coach Albie O”Connell said. “They are well-balanced. They have a lot of go-to guys, a lot of guys with good experience. A highly-competitive team.”

This should be an entertaining affair as these two teams split the season series with each team taking care of business on the road. In the first meeting on December 7, the Riverhawks (18-11-5, 12-7-5) continued the Terriers rough beginning to the season with a 5-3 win at Agganis Arena.

“It’s been a challenge with the group this year,” O’Connell said. “There have been some ups and downs.”

UMass Lowell scored twice in the first period to take a 2-0 lead, but goals by sophomore forward Ty Amonte, sophomore defenseman Cam Crotty and senior forward Bobo Carpenter evened it up at 3-3 early in the third stanza.

The Riverhawks took control from there, however. Freshman defenseman Seth Barton scored his first career goal 7:45 into the third period to give his team a lead they would not relinquish.

“It’s a team that is very impressionable,” UMass Lowell head coach Norm Bazin said. “They are going to rely on the experience of some of our seniors who have been there before and have gotten to the championship game.”

The series moved north to Tsongas the following night and that result should give the Terriers confidence they can go to Lowell and win this playoff series.

BU responded well from its defeat the previous night. The Terriers scored three times in a four-minute stretch in the first period to take a 3-0 lead. Carpenter accounted for two of those tallies with sophomore forward Shane Bowers chipping in the other one.

“It’s really about getting off to a good start and having a good first period,” O’Connell said. “There have been times where we have gotten down and we have had to chase the game.”

Sophomore defenseman Kasper Kotkansalo assisted on the first two goals and BU continued its offensive dominance in the third period. Junior forward Patrick Curry extended a one-goal lead to 4-2 five minutes into the last frame before putting the game out of reach by assisting on Bowers’ second score of the night with three minutes remaining.

“Guys know their role and understand how we have to play to be successful,” O’Connell said.

That win signaled a massive swing of momentum for BU. This game kicked off a five-game streak without a loss, a stretch which included crucial Hockey East wins over New Hampshire and Providence.

“It’s been a bit of a rollercoaster,” O’Connell said. “We started out slow. Then we got going a little bit. Towards the end of the first semester, we had some big games. As we went into the second half, we had a pretty good stretch there. Right now, we are relatively healthy for the first time in awhile.”

Do you think BU can advance to TD Garden? Let us know below! 

 

23 thoughts on “BU opens Hockey East tournament at UMass Lowell

  1. Unfortunately the season ends Saturday night and the mass exodus begins. Any body want to guess the first player, that has eligibility left to leave? Also which member from the every thing is awesome crew will have the most outlandish excuse for this year?

    • Sheesh, Frozen Out! Let’s stick with them through the season, shall we? Everyone has to win four games, so they have as good a chance as anyone to get to the top.

      But if you really need an answer, my money’s on Fabbro 😛

  2. Frozen out spoken like a die hard BU fan. If this team had more fans like you all there games would be on the road. I’m assuming your referring to me and Roy by saying the awesome crew. Well that’s the second thing you got right this year. And let’s not mince words here I never said things are awesome I have said we can beat anybody we have been in games against top ranked teams. Our record is what it is we have to win out it’s a tough task but one that is not impossible. The games need to be played and I have faith that BU will give it everything they have and hopefully that will be enough. How can one constantly tear a program down and say they are a fan I keep asking the question because I don’t get a valid response. I’m not blind I can see the holes on this team but I’m a fan of this program I don’t harp on the negative and when I do criticize certain things I offer alternatives and when my team looses I don’t get excited like most on this blog (authors not included) with your negative logic BU should just stay home well I have news for you that’s the worst attitude a player could have. I know the coaches know the players know they are underdogs so what we need to get out there play hockey for 2-3 days as if it was the most important thing in the world and when that final buzzer goes off and we win then we prepare for next week if we loose and we gave it everything we had we hold our heads up high and get ready for next year. Contrary to what you say this team has never quit this year and I don’t expect them to now just because you don’t think they can win. Go bu🐾

  3. Frozen clearly your a miserable prick clearly your post was to stir things up its ok tho win or lose I’m still a fan unlike u …. And as for u being in on thr program your ass got booted out its no secret bit that ain’t about Hockey which explains your hate … Yes the everything is awesome crew is and will ALWAYS SUPPORT THIS TEAM win or lose unlike u miserable douchebag!!! Get of this fucken blog u make me sick!!!

    • Rui… I appreciate the passion, but we can’t have this on the blog. It’s ok to voice an opinion, but let’s keep it clean, and focus on the hockey.

  4. Rui,
    Sticks and stones will break my bones and names will never hurt me . You cannot express yourself so you have to swear.
    I was never thrown out that is simply not true.
    Your attack on me is truly ignorant and unprofessional . If you continue to threaten or ever mention me., you will leave me alternative but to make this a legal matter.

  5. Speaking of ignorant and unprofessional I will leave it at that… I was raised better then to disrespect my elders so.if u took it to heart I apologize but I still don’t like u …. Go BU

  6. Let’s just talk hockey here. Frozen I have no problem taking you on dealing with hockey issues and even the politics of off ice activities. I think Roy was just frustrated by your hate for bu again this is the bu hockey blog so I think by you consistently going on here and bashing the program we love you try and get a reaction like you just got. I would hope you can take it with a grain of salt. And I think bu will do all the talking. I don’t hate you I even enjoy reading your posts because I enjoy sticking up for my team however it is my opinion if you hate bu so much you should put some of that energy into rooting for another team.

  7. I must say I just read the last few posts on the last article. I don’t know why all of a sudden things have gotten personal I must say we are talking hockey here. I think it’s playoffs so emotions are high. The great thing about college hockey is you can root for whatever team you want. I’m a big boy and I’m sure the haters will hate that I’m the so called head of the awesome crew I will root for bu till the day I die I hope we can agree to disagree on bu hockey in the end it’s just a game and the participants are just kids so I don’t mind the jabs but let’s keep it appropriate for the sake of the athletes and to make it fun on the blog. Go bu🐾

  8. Its a shame that the fans on this blog have to fight with each other and take the comments personally over something that we are all fans of : BU Hockey. there are questions about the program that need to be discussed that have emerged this year. The season of course is not over, we have an important series coming up and i’m sure the boys will give it their all to advance.
    However questions remain: is Albie the right head coach for this program going forward?He ‘s a nice guy and has reopened contact with the Friends personally and seems to be for re establishing connections with the fans and this is an important plus. The results this season have been overall disappointing so far and there is a question about the players motivation to make it work. A negative. Do we need to change our recruiting strategy? Frozen and I have identified this issue quite a while back, if our high end players are all going to one and dones than it will be very difficult to run a program with the aspirations of winning nat’l championships every year as is stated during the game introductions at Agannis, or at least be legitimate contenders. If some are satisfied with the program as is that’s fine but if we wish that BU hockey return to its former nat’l prominence some things have to change, i think that is clear.

  9. I want to get back to hockey on this blog a question to you Liam with bu speed. Would you change there approach through the neutral zone? Also what’s your ideal D pairings do you put Ferrance back with Fabbro or do you keep Krys with Fabbro? In my opinion our defense drives our offense I think a simple game a hard fought game using our speed through transition will give us opportunities. The haters will say we don’t score enough which is true but when we do and we had opportunities in Lowell last time we generated them by getting pucks to the net. We must score and why it’s not a must but certainly helpful to score first get the kids to play with some confidence and quiet the Lowell fans. I’m looking forward to watching playoff hockey go bu🐾

    • I’ll answer your question Colin – we don’t really have the physicality to dump and chase, so I think the only choice is to pass our way out of trouble in the neutral zone. Indirect passes off the boards seem to be the best options as teams have often learned to clog the middle of the ice with so many talented puck handlers for BU. On D, Fabbro and Krys both bring good offensive production, but can get caught forward sometimes. If you put a strong defender like Farrance (who still produces offensively) back with Fabbro and bring Krys’ offensive skill next to Crotty’s defensive focus, you’ll have a more balanced and overall safer defensive unit.

  10. Guys, let’s keep this clean. we all want to win but some of us see real problems with the team. One of the problems is that why do former BU players seem to play so well in the NHL but not so much when with BU ? I saw Coyle and the Bruins now top D man play a couple of times this week. They did not play with as much spirit with BU s they do in the pros. Why ?

  11. SoCC, Coyle played really well while at BU. No Eichel of course but averaged 0.7 points per game as a freshman and 0.88 points per game his sophomore season (the half season he was at BU). Not sure why you have a problem with how he played at BU. Just like Greenway, he had an imposing physical presence and got better each season. Of course I have a big problem with how he left BU but not at all how he played while at BU.

  12. I went back and watched some of the last game against Lowell and I’m not a stats guy but one thing popped up that I think is important when you don’t shoot you don’t score our loss to Lowell we had 28 shots which is not bad but not the 37 jake saw. Our win we peppered there goalie with 42 and some obviously were weak but my point is the more rubber we throw at this kid the better off we will be. A valid criticism this year is our lack of scoring I think to often we are looking for the perfect shot and don’t want to give up the puck . I think our success is based on shooting the puck getting rebounds and if we don’t get rebounds pick up our guys make them work hard in there zone and let’s see if we just can’t make the garden . It’s a new season anything can happen let’s get behind these kids put your differences aside and let’s get ready for some playoff hockey. Go bu

    • Good points Colin. Let’s hope the guys come out hot in the offensive end – for this team, shots win games!

  13. Go Bu!!!! Everyone’s post should include that sentiment. I’m not exactly brimming with confidence tonight but hey, miracles do happen. Oettinger needs to steal a game for the Terriers to have any chance. He can silence a lot of skeptics (myself included) with a big game here. TK out!!!

  14. Guess season isn’t over Saturday . well balanced and seemed locked in all night … Go BU… Good night ladies and gentlemen…

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