Game Recaps

Terriers dominate Merrimack 7-1 behind Jack Harvey’s two goals

Macklin Celebrini (71) embraces Jack Harvey (12) after his linemate scored his first two collegiate goals 27 seconds apart. GRACIE DAVENPORT/ BOSTON HOCKEY BLOG

“Scoring for your Boston University Terriers — Jack Harvey!”

While the announcement stays the same for each BU goal, this one held some weight for the freshman forward.

Harvey has had limited ice time in his first year with the Terriers. He played few games in the first half of the season and only first played legitimate minutes against Northeastern a couple of weeks ago.

Harvey then moved to the top line to pair with former Chicago Steel teammate Macklin Celebrini, earning two assists in the win over University of New Hampshire last Friday.

This week, however, Harvey was playing on Agganis Arena ice. The freshman flashed his on-puck skills, scoring his first collegiate goal in front of a sea of scarlet and white.

Harvey wasn’t satisfied with just one, however. Only 27 seconds later, he netted his second collegiate goal in similar fashion.

“It was pretty exciting,” Harvey said. “Working every day on my own just trying to stay ready for when that opportunity came, and then it came, and I felt I did a good job.”

Harvey’s back-to-back goals contributed to a 7-1 onslaught by the Terriers (19-7-1, 13-4-1 Hockey East), completing the regular season sweep of the Merrimack Warriors (10-17-1, 3-14-1 HEA) on Friday evening. 

“I’m really happy with our group tonight,” BU head coach Jay Pandolfo said. “I thought we were focused right from the start … we were good in the first period, but we missed the net a lot.”

While the Terriers eventually outshot Merrimack 42-22, it didn’t start that way. BU’s flashy offense was able to set-up with ease but had issues getting shots off against the aggressive Merrimack defense. The Warriors recorded eight blocked shots in the first and ended the period tied in shots on goal, 7-7. 

Devin Kaplan (21) gets into a scrum with Merrimack after the whistle. GRACIE DAVENPORT/ BOSTON HOCKEY BLOG

The Terriers finally broke through with just under two minutes left in the first frame. Sophomore defenseman Lane Hutson found senior forward Dylan Peterson skating outside the left circle. Peterson fired a shot through traffic and past senior goaltender Zachary Borgiel at 18:36 for a 1-0 lead.

“We kind of took off from there,” Pandolfo said.

The pay-off from an otherwise frustrating first period carried momentum for the Terriers into the second period when Celebrini netted his third goal in two games on a quick flick from the slot. The goal at 4:20 of the second period, came off a pass from, once again, Lane Hutson, earning his 24th and 25th assists of the season.

Merrimack had lost some luster since coming out of the locker room in the second period. They were losing stick battles and the Terriers were able to easily expose holes in their defense. The hits kept on coming.

Just over two and half minutes later, BU graduate defenseman Case McCarthy fired a missile from just ahead of the blue line at 6:54. 

“We were getting to the net a little bit more than we were in the first period,” Pandolfo said. “The results are there.”

The Warriors didn’t go quietly. Seconds after a slashing penalty on freshman defensemanGavin McCarthy ended, Merrimack junior forward Mark Hillier found mesh past BU goaltender Mathieu Caron’s glove side. The score was 3-1 at 10:53 of the middle frame. 

It didn’t stay that way for long. 

Junior forward Jack Hughes found a rushing Harvey, who danced his way in front of the net and scored his first collegiate goal. After the long wait for goal No. 1, the freshman forward only needed 27 seconds to ring in No. 2.

Celebrini found his former teammate and current linemate rushing in front of the net. Harvey, in similar fashion, rung the puck off the post and in for an emphatic second goal and an emphatic four-goal lead.

“I can’t give him enough credit for how he’s handled himself this year,” Pandolfo said about Harvey. “For really not getting much of an opportunity at all to just keep working, keep doing the right things, be a really good teammate and now taking advantage of the opportunity, but that’s not always easy.”

If the annual “Beanpot trap game” existed, it didn’t for Boston University. The Terriers earned a breakaway in the final seconds of the period, which led to a 3-on-1 and a backdoor goal for sophomore forward Jeremy Wilmer to take a 6-1 lead. It was the third goal in 90 seconds.

Harvey wasn’t the only Terrier to have a career first on Friday. Freshman goaltender Max Lacroix, who joined the team in the second semester, took the pipes for the first time, recording his first six collegiate saves.

“We tried to get him some live game action,” Pandolfo said. “He’s a competitive kid, so I’m happy for him that he got a chance to get in there and did very well.”

Jack Harvey (12) celebrates his first collegiate goal. GRACIE DAVENPORT/ BOSTON HOCKEY BLOG

Sophomore forward Quinn Hutson put the icing on the cake with a wide-open lane to Borgiel, kicking the extra point for the Terrier to make it 7-1.

“I like the way we played in the third. We didn’t give up much,” Pandolfo said. “We could have scored probably six or seven more goals. They’re goalie made some really good saves.”

After falling in three-straight games a couple of weeks ago, the Terriers are now looking to ride the momentum to their fourth-straight win — and it’s a big one. BU will take on Northeastern in the Beanpot Championship at TD Garden for a 7:30 p.m. puck drop. The Boston Hockey Blog will have full, on-the-ground coverage so be sure to follow along on Twitter (X) @BOShockeyblog and Instagram 

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