Returning to competitive action for the first time in nearly a month, the Boston University men’s hockey team (6-6-5, 4-3-4 Hockey East) will take on Brown University (3-11, 3-7 ECAC) at Agganis Arena on Wednesday night.
The Terriers kicked off 2020 with an exhibition game at USA Hockey Arena against the US National Team Development Program’s Under-18 squad on Friday. BU was victorious, overcoming Team USA 4-3 in a shootout after ten minutes of overtime, split between five-on-five play and three-on-three.
“It would be awesome [to have a shootout and 3-on-3 more often],” O’Connell said after the exhibition. “I wish we did it. The fans would love it. The guys on our bench were certainly excited.”
Aiming to carry the excitement back into collegiate competition, the Terriers will be facing a Brown University side that could be vulnerable, having dropped each of their last six games dating back to November 23. Most recently, the Bears fell 5-1 in a visit to New Hampshire on Saturday.
Brown is led offensively by sophomore forward Justin Jallen, who has posted a team-leading nine points. His seven goals sit four clear of the next closest Bear. Senior defenseman Zach Giuttari and junior defenseman Tony Stillwell share the team lead in assists with six apiece.
In the back, senior goaltender Gavin Nieto has dominated the Brown crease with 11 appearances thus far, holding a 2.94 goals-against average and .906 save percentage. Freshman defenseman Luke Krys, the brother of former Terrier Chad Krys, has notched 22 blocks – second only to Giuttari’s 24.
BU and Brown haven’t met since the 2010-11 season, when they played twice between November 27 and New Year’s Day. The Terriers went winless in both games, tying 4-4 before losing the rematch 6-1. Those two contests were the only Brown-BU fixtures of the millennium to this point.
Puck drop from Boston is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Wednesday. The Boston Hockey Blog will be providing live content on our live blog and on Twitter, @BOShockeyblog.