Game Recaps

Devin Kaplan posts two-point night as BU sweeps UVM, 5-2 win

Photo by Gracie Davenport.

The Terriers passed the test. 

The No. 1 Boston University men’s hockey team (16-4-1, 11-1-1 Hockey East) journeyed north for the weekend to the historic Gutterson Field House and left with a full six points against the University of Vermont Catamounts (10-11-1, 4-7-1 HE), winning 5-2 on Saturday night. 

On paper, this weekend sweep should not have been a tough task for a BU roster of this caliber,  but as it has been echoed all season long — no win in Hockey East is easy. 

Despite the weekend sweep, BU head coach Jay Pandolfo is still looking for more from his team going forward. 

“I still think we have room to grow,” Pandolfo said postgame. “You got to put teams away…it doesn’t matter what the score is, you can’t change the way you play.”

BU junior goaltender Mathieu Caron bailed his team out early on as UVM controlled the game to start before the star of the weekend — sophomore defenseman Lane Hutson — opened the scoring at 9:49 of the first period. 

After a strong shift by BU’s second line, the Terriers’ top defensive pairing went to work to give BU the 1-0 lead. Freshman Tom Willander’s initial shot from the blue line was tipped in by Lane Hutson for his fifth point of the weekend. 

The Terriers doubled their lead to a 2-0 scoreline after an impressive individual effort from Jack Hughes at 17:18 of the first frame. The junior forward worked down low along the boards before pulling the puck to the right circle and wiring it past senior goaltender Gabe Carriere for his third goal of the season. 

“I think he’s been coming along very well since the second half started. Seems like he has more confidence…There’s no question he can help us offensively,” Pandolfo said.  

BU’s lethal man advantage continued its hot streak from Friday, but it was the second unit that struck on the Terriers’ first power-play attempt of the night to start the middle frame. 

Photo by Gracie Davenport.

In tic-tac-toe fashion, Willander’s pass to Jeremy Wilmer in the right circle found sophomore forward Devin Kaplan in the slot. The Philadelphia Flyers prospect slapped the puck past Carriere for Kaplan’s fourth goal of the season, which became the eventual game-winner. 

Kaplan’s last goal came over two months ago on Nov. 18 against Maine. 

“Just to get the monkey off the back, it’s always good to score,” Kaplan said postgame. “We work on power play every day in practice…it was kind of the perfect play and just up to me to finish it.”

The Catamounts breathed some life back into their bench at 15:53 of the second period as graduate forward Ryan Miotto got his team on the board. UVM’s initial blast from the blue line could not find the back of the net, but with Caron down and out, Miotto tapped the puck home to make it 3-1.

The Terriers led in shots 20-16 heading into the final frame.

BU assistant captain Sam Stevens brought the Terriers’ lead to 4-1 less than a minute into the third period on a rebound off of Kaplan’s initial shot. Stevens’ goal marked his third in the last four games and fifth of the season. 

“He’s an example of how we need to play on a regular basis,” Pandolfo said of Stevens. “I’ve talked about our team being more consistent…so I think some of our guys should take a page out of his book because he does it the right way every time he steps onto the ice.”

After UVM successfully challenged Nick Zabaneh’s goal for offsides, Macklin Celebrini gave BU back its 5-1 lead at 7:51 of the third period on yet another highlight-reel goal. 

“We see it every day in practice, so it’s really not surprising,” Pandolfo said of Celebrini’s playmaking abilities. “How quick he attacks off the wall and attacks the middle of the ice is something he does very well.”

To finish off the night, the Catamounts struck again at 13:42 of the third period to bring the final score to 5-2. 

Ryan Greene did not play in the third period, and Pandolfo said postgame the sophomore forward “was a little banged up” and held out for “precautionary reasons.”

Caron posted another solid game, making 26 saves by the final horn, to give the Terriers their seventh-straight win and league-best eleventh Hockey East win of the season. 

Up next, BU has arguably its toughest test of the season next weekend, taking on the No. 2 Boston College Eagles in the season’s first Battle of Comm. Ave. 

“I think we did a good job building our game this weekend,” Kaplan said. “We’re rolling four lines and getting the flow going for our game…I think we’ll be good rolling into next weekend.”

The Boston Hockey Blog will have full, on-the-ground coverage of the weekend series so be sure to follow along on Twitter (X) @BOShockeyblog and Instagram

One Comment

  1. Very successful trip up to Vermont did what we were supposed to pick up six points and took care of business way to keep it going.. Go BU 🐾