With the calendar year concluding, I couldn’t help but think of all the games we’ve covered over the last 12 months – after all, it was this time last year that I started with Boston Hockey Blog, and I’ve watched every minute of every game since. Looking back at the last year of BU hockey, here are the games I picked out as the top five most entertaining BU games of 2019 (in chronological order).
BU emerges victorious 4-3 in visit to Providence – Jan. 12
Coming off a rocky first half of the 2018-19 season, the Terriers started the new year strong with wins over New Hampshire and Providence in their first weekend back in action. Travelling south to face the Friars, who were ranked No. 7/8 nationally at the time, BU went down by two early but clawed back thanks to a pair of goals from Shane Bowers to draw even after 40 minutes. Providence took the lead 11 seconds into the third period but David Farrance and Logan Cockerill answered to give BU the come-from-behind 4-3 win, while Jake Oettinger shut the door with 33 saves.
BU knocks off UMass Lowell 4-1 in series decider – Mar. 17
There wasn’t a ton of joy for BU in tournament play in 2019, but the highlight in win-or-go-home games was undoubtedly the 4-1 win over UMass Lowell on the road in the third game of their best-of-three Hockey East quarterfinal series. Less than 24 hours after surrendering game two to the Riverhawks, the Terriers responded with a three-goal first period to overwhelm the hosts in the series finale. Chad Krys, Joel Farabee, and Patrick Harper scored early before Harper added another in the final minute of regulation, and with 18 saves from Jake Oettinger, BU punched their ticket to the TD Garden.
BU falls to Providence 6-5 despite Farrance hat trick – Nov. 9
Having tied 3-3 in Boston the night before, BU and then-No. 11 Providence exploded for an 11-goal affair at Schneider Arena, the most combined goals in a single game for either team thus far this season. David Farrance tallied his first career hat trick with a trio of goals between the first and second periods, and Trevor Zegras got in on the action to help send the game into the final frame knotted at four. The Friars would ultimately have the last laugh with two third-period goals to negate Ethan Phillips’s first of his career, but with a Terrier hat trick, two BU goaltender changes and 60 minutes of end-to-end drama, this game was a treat to any fan in the building.
BU gets by UMass 4-3 thanks to Tucker’s big night – Nov. 15
In the midst of a challenging two-week stretch featuring four games against two top-ten opponents, BU opened their series against then-No. 5 Massachusetts with a productive 40 minutes, getting goals from Matt Quercia, Patrick Curry, Gabe Chabot, and David Farrance to jump on top 4-0. Nearly tripling the Terriers in shots on goal, 38-14, UMass came storming out of the second intermission with three goals in eight minutes, but the Terriers held on, backed by a career-high 49 saves for Sam Tucker. It was the highest save total for any BU goaltender since 2017, carrying the hosts to a much-needed victory, ending a skid of five games without a win.
BU overpowers Northeastern 6-3 in first half finale – Dec. 7
The Terriers ended their 2019 slate of competitive fixtures in style against then-No. 8/12 Northeastern, breaking a 13-month winless streak in meetings with the Huskies. Patrick Harper opened the scoring before the teams traded blows in the middle frame when Jack DeBoer, Harper, Robert Mastrosimone and Domenick Fensore overcame two temporary NU leads to put BU on top for good. Matt Quercia’s late empty-netter made for a 6-3 final, BU’s most goals in a game against Northeastern since 2015, and Sam Tucker had 37 saves in the victorious effort.