The Boston University men’s hockey team, without head coach Albie O’Connell as he served his one game suspension, took down the University of Vermont Catamounts by a 3-0 final at Agganis Arena on Friday night to open the weekend series. Be sure to check out Brady Gardner’s full recap here. Here are my three takeaways, and all opinions are my own.
1. Sam Tucker is finding his groove
I know I’ve said this before and I was beyond wrong, but with how strong Tucker looked last weekend with a whopping 85 saves total, combined with Friday’s shutout, it seems like the graduate transfer is hitting his stride after some inconsistency, which made for a bumpy start to the year. Tucker made some saves look easy, including a nonchalant lift of the right pad to deny Bryce Misley on the doorstep in the second period. Overall, it was a strong outing for the netminder, who also picked up his first career point, a secondary assist on Patrick Harper’s goal.
2. Confidence is growing for BU freshmen
First-years Robert Mastrosimone, Ethan Phillips, and Domenick Fensore were all over the ice for the Terriers. Mastrosimone and Phillips have shown more and more poise with the puck by the game, especially in the defensive and neutral zones, on top of their already impressive offensive capabilities. What’s more, those two in particular have shouldered increasing defensive responsibilities. As for Fensore, the dynamic blueliner has never shied away from showcasing his puck-moving ability, but his net-drive without the puck to jump into the rush and bury Phillips’ feed for his first collegiate goal was particularly impressive.
3. Game-misconduct a learning experience for Zegras
In all honesty, Trevor Zegras took one of the most senseless penalties that I’ve seen in quite some time. Clearly frustrated after taking a hard shove from Carter Long, Zegras cross-checked Long as the two of them locked up heading into the boards, before finishing his check with a blatant elbow to Long’s head right in front of the official. After the play was whistled down, Zegras tripped Jacques Bouquot before heading to the box and eventually down the tunnel for the night. Although he has gobs of talent and a little bit of snarl in his game can be encouraged, plays like this do not belong in Zegras’ game. Hopefully this serves as a learning experience for him.
BU and UVM will face off again on the Agganis Arena ice on Saturday afternoon at 4pm.