Three Takeaways from Saturday’s tie versus Vermont

David Farrance goes for a shot earlier this season. Photo by Emily Hunter.

The Boston University men’s hockey team came up with a 3-3 draw against the University of Vermont Catamounts at Agganis Arena on Saturday afternoon. Be sure to check out Brady Gardner’s full recap by clicking here. Here are my three takeaways – as always, opinions are my own.

1. When does David Farrance for Hobey become a legitimate conversation?

Farrance continued his torrid production to start the year as he put away a pretty wrister to beat UVM’s Stefanos Lekkas. The goal was the defenseman’s team-leading tenth of the season, which is the most among Division I defensemen and tied for the second-most in the entire nation. Farrance’s tally also marked his eighth power play goal of the season, which is the most in D-I, in addition to it being his 19th point of the season – most among d-men in Division I and tied for the fourth-most in the nation. Needless to say, the junior’s start to the season has been utterly ridiculous, and there’s no reason to believe he will slow down anytime soon. So, I know it’s early, but how about Farrance as an early candidate for the Hobey Baker?

2. BU still needs to shoot and make better decisions with the puck

Head coach Albie O’Connell touched on it in his postgame presser, but turnovers were costly for BU in this one. Penalties aside, BU had opportunities in their own end to make the simple play and clear the puck, but certain instances of trying to cut the play too fine led to bad giveaways. This was especially true in the seconds leading up to UVM’s game-tying goal as the Terriers had numerous opportunities to simply get the puck out of danger. Vermont deserves credit for bearing down on the forecheck to force overtime. To the point on shooting, this is not as glaring of an issue as it was earlier on in the year. However, specifically in the final minute of OT with BU on the power play, it did not seem like any Terrier on the ice had any intention of shooting the puck until it was too late, after what seemed like extra passes or dekes forfeited opportunities to get a quality shot away.

3. Trevor Zegras being scratched is not the reason BU tied

After being ejected Friday night for what was, in my opinion, a senseless penalty, Zegras was a healthy scratch for Saturday’s contest. One can make their own assumptions as to what went into the decision there, but needless to say, BU must hope that their freshman sensation learned from the experience. In his absence, Sam Stevens slid up to the first line, and performed quite well, tallying his first two collegiate goals. While the Terrier power play was not necessarily firing on all cylinders and one could make the case that BU missed Zegras’s talent, BU still managed to score three goals, and had the lead in the waning minutes of the third. The bigger issues resulted from costly turnovers, which ultimately sent the game to overtime and deprived BU of the full two points.

The Terriers will return to action with Zegras in the lineup, per O’Connell, on Tuesday night as they take on Sacred Heart University at Agganis Arena. Puck drop is slated for 7:00 pm. Stay tuned for my preview, which will be published in the coming days.

13 thoughts on “Three Takeaways from Saturday’s tie versus Vermont

  1. Hi Brady. I respectfully disagree with your #3 takeaway. I understand that Stevens did an amazing job stepping up as first line center and that we made costly turnovers. Having said that, I think having Zegras in the lineup would have added at least another goal to our tally … to make up for those mistakes. Of course I do acknowledge that it’s possible the team will benefit in the long run from knowing there will be hell to pay for committing really stupid penalties.

    • Hey Glenn, while I do agree that the team could have definitely used Zegras and his all-world talent, I just feel like the turnovers and playing down to Vermont is part of what cost them most

      • Thanks Patrick. They definitely did play down to UVM. There’s no other way to slice it … when you can’t earn all four points against the cellar dweller of Hockey East. We will soon find out if they learned their lesson on the “playing down” thing. We should dominate SHU tomorrow night.

  2. I continue to exercise patience with this team, but I must say bu should have won both games and should have won them by large margins. We played down to Vermont’s level. We made careless plays as you pointed out Patrick. We also continue to dangle with the puck to much in the neutral zone which totally handcuffs us from using our biggest asset our speed. We are making it way to easy for teams to cover us. Another Saturday another bad day for refs. The penalty on Chabot was terrible. There was barely any contact. On zegras I trust coach made the best decision for the team. No ones above the team. We just need to get back on track Tuesday.

    • I agree Colin, and I assume the staff was sending a message to Zegras. As for the team as a whole, the poor puck-management and trying to be too cute is frustrating to say the least. Also, regardless of whether or not the calls were right, it feels like BU takes a concerning amount of penalties.

  3. Agree with some of the other comments made. There is a time to pass and a time to shoot. Right now the Terriers are the best passing 0.500 team in Division 1.

  4. i love watching Farance and Fensore skate. i hold my breath waiting to see their magic or sometimes make the fatal turnover. but both are great.

    also like phillips and mastrosimone a lot. imagine that line with amonte centering and not jake wise. enough said

    tucker, i don’t know. he seems to be getting it done but his form is kind of tough to watch. his bum is in the net. but whatever. i do hope they bring in a goalie the second half

    we needed a 4 point weekend and we squandered that one which could come back and bite us down the road

    this is a tough stretch with 4 games in 9 days. let’s hope the freshman hold up. now is when some can hit a wall. need a W against sacred heart because the Big Red loom

    • I like your points Vinnie, both about Farrance and Fensore’s boom-or-bust play-styles and the encouraging play of Phillips and Mastrosimone. Tucker can be a bit unorthodox, but I thought he gave no reason to doubt him for the second week in a row. Need is a strong word, but it certainly could’ve helped. It’s a testing stretch for sure, we’ll see what they’re made of!

    • Vinnie, if we don’t beat SHU convincingly, that will be ultra-lame. I think it will be over after the first period. Cornell will be tough … to say the least. It would be nice to give them their first “L”. In the Pairwise Rankings … it’s the two Ivy teams (Cornell and HU) as #1 and #2.

  5. I think Ferrance and Fensore are not only playing well offensively obviously but defensively as well. When they get stalled offensively which doesn’t happen much they move there feet and are in position defensively.

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