With little news coming from the NHL or the college hockey world, I’ve been trying to stay positive and optimistic about the 2020-21 Boston University men’s hockey team. Here are my thoughts on the good, the bad, and the ugly in terms of next year’s season. All opinions are my own.
Logan Cockerill will serve as captain for the 2020-21 Terrier team. Cockerill wore an “A” this past season but spent the majority of this year on the bench due to an injury in the home opener. In his 92 games played as a Terrier, he has accumulated 36 points with 14 goals and 22 assists. Although Patrick Curry’s absence will be felt, Cockerill’s energy and drive to make up for lost time have the potential to fill that hole.
Similar to Cockerill, Ty Amonte missed this season due to an upper body injury. Returning to play as a redshirt junior, Amonte will make a huge difference on the team this season. Amonte will hit the ice with an “A” on his jersey and I’m looking forward to seeing his return. With 25 points in 73 games played, I credit Amonte for his ability to produce game winning goals.
Both Matthew Quercia and Jake Wise are returning to the team as upperclassmen, and their jumps from freshman to sophomore year can’t go unnoticed. As a freshman, Wise had only two points in 12 games. In his second year, he notched 13 points in 33 games, and while he played in three times as many games, his improvements on the ice are noticeable. Wise makes big moves in big games, like his goal in the 2020 Beanpot Final.
Quercia, meanwhile, had only two points after his first year from one goal and one assist. As a sophomore, he upped his numbers to six goals and seven assists in seven fewer games. Seeing the jumps made in just a year, it’ll be interesting to see their moves from underclassmen to upperclassmen, along with the jumps last year’s freshman class can make as they become sophomores.
I don’t think I could write this without mentioning the most obvious point: David Farrance. I was nervous that he wouldn’t return for his senior season, but his commitment to the team proved me wrong. Notably a top 10 finalist for the Hobey Baker Award and a Hockey East First Team All-Star, Farrance’s return will be a game changer for the Terriers. He finished sixth in the country in points, ninth in assists, and led all Division I defensemen in points, goals, and power-play goals. Having Farrance for one more year, especially as an assistant captain, has the potential to end BU’s trophy drought.
When Trevor Zegras was picked ninth overall in the 2019 NHL Entry Draft, it was almost obvious that he would be a one-and-done player, like Joel Farabee the season before. Zegras’ departure is upsetting, but definitely not surprising. He was a superstar freshman with 36 points in 33 games who was ready to go professional after just one season. Zegras has since inked a three-year deal with the Anaheim Ducks.
The team will always suffer losses with the graduation of its senior class. This year, the Terriers will be losing six players, the most notable being Patrick Curry and Patrick Harper. Curry led the team with 19 goals this season and also served as a leader on and off the ice with a “C” on his jersey. Harper also played a major part on the team with 37 points in 32 games played. Harper signed a two-year, entry-level contract with the Nashville Predators and Curry has committed to a two-year deal with the Grand Rapids Griffins of the AHL. While both have exciting futures ahead, their ability to produce goals and play consistently will be missed.
As states move through the reopening process, it’s still unclear whether or not college hockey will resume. BU has plans for students to return to campus this fall, but the decision to return to play remains unknown. If hockey returns, and I’m optimistic that it will, will fans be allowed to watch? Will the team be allowed to travel? Are conferences being shuffled?
There are lots of questions still to be answered. Now, all we can do is wait and hope that the NCAA and college hockey can make the best of this unusual situation