Game Previews

Terriers face Maine for two nights at Agganis

By Mark Fraenkel

Photo by Caroline Fernandez

After a thrilling win over the Cornell Big Red (10-6-1, 7-3-0 ECAC), the Boston University men’s hockey team (15-6-0, 9-4-0 Hockey East) is set to face the University of Maine Black Bears (9-10-2, 3-6-1 HE) on Friday and Saturday night at Agganis Arena.

“They play really hard,” Head Coach Jay Pandolfo said of Maine in his Thursday afternoon media availability. “They’re structured. they’re very well coached. So we have to make sure we’re ready.”

BU enters the weekend after beating Cornell last Saturday evening on home-ice. Freshman defenseman Lane Hutson found the back of the net in beautiful fashion with 3.8 seconds left in regulation to win the game for the Terriers.

Maine comes to Boston after splitting with the No. 16 University of Massachusetts Lowell River Hawks (12-9-1, 6-5-1 HE) last weekend. 

In a two-game series in Orono, the Black Bears lost game one. The next night, goals from sophomore defenseman David Breazeale, freshman defenseman Brandon Holt, freshman forward Aidan Carney, junior forward Lynden Breen and senior forward Ben Poisson helped Ben Barr’s team beat UML 5-3.  Junior goaltender Victor Ostman made 25 saves and picked up the win.

“I’ve actually been really impressed with them,” Pandolfo said about Maine. “Just they play with a lot of structure and they compete really hard. I think that those are two things that stand out to me.”

There’s a lot of history behind these two teams dating back to Pandolfo’s playing days on the Commonwealth Avenue campus. In 1995, the Terriers beat the Black Bears to win the national championship.

“We had some great matchups with them,” Pandolfo said.  “Paul Kariya was a freshman when I was a freshman so he was still the best college hockey player that I’ve seen (…) For me it was probably our biggest rival when I was here.”

Going into the weekend, BU is currently tied with the Providence College Friars (12-7-6, 7-3-5 HE) for fourth place in Hockey East with 26 points. The University of Connecticut Huskies (13-7-3, 8-6-2 HE) lead the Terriers by one point. BU leads sixth placed Lowell by six points.  Maine is sitting in eighth place with 12 points. 

Senior forwards Jamie Armstrong and Ethan Phillips will not be available this weekend. Pandolfo said Armstrong is more day-to-day and skated for the first time today. Phillips, on the other hand, is week-to-week and has yet to return to the ice. 

The puck is set to drop at 7:00pm on Friday and 6:00pm on Saturday. The Boston Hockey Blog will have full coverage from Agganis Arena so be sure to follow along on Twitter @BOShockeyblog and Instagram @boston.hockey.blog. 

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