Lighting the Lamp: Episode 2

We’re back with another episode of Lighting the Lamp.

We’re recapping the Northeastern series, preview the game against the University of New Hampshire, talking the women’s team and what’s happening around Hockey East

The Terriers look to make it two straight victories and extended their unbeaten streak to three games as BU heads to UNH. Read Matt’s preview here.

Please note, there will not be a live blog tonight as we were unable to make the trip to UNH. However, we will be following the game and will be providing updates via Twitter.

The Look Back: BU sees mixed results vs. UNH

PHOTO BY MADDIE MALHOTRA/DAILY FREE PRESS STAFF
Kieffer Bellows now has two goals in his last three games. PHOTO BY MADDIE MALHOTRA/DAILY FREE PRESS STAFF

It probably wasn’t how head coach David Quinn drew it up, but he’ll gladly take three out of four points from this past weekend’s series with the University of New Hampshire.

After slumping hard, the No. 4 Boston University men’s hockey team clawed its way back to the status quo, outscoring UNH 12-8 across two contests. It got underway with a 4-4 tie at Agganis Arena on Friday night, then wrapped up with an 8-4 win for the Terriers over the Wildcats up in Durham, New Hampshire on Saturday evening.

Content

  1. Friday’s recap.
  2. Friday’s sider about some unexpected lines.
  3. Saturday’s recap.
  4. Saturday’s side about a comprehensive team effort.

Talking points

  • The Cloonan line – The third line of Kieffer Bellows, Chase Phelps and Ryan Cloonan looked strong all weekend. It finished with six points on Friday night and displayed some true chemistry. All three players have dipped at various points in 2016-17, so it’s nice to see them hitting their stride.

“I love it. All three of us bring different aspects from our game. Cloonan is such a fast, great skater, makes great plays. Then Chase Phelps is a strong body who gets to the corners. You saw his release out there – it’s nice and quick, gets it on net. I just try to do my best to do whatever I can to help the team out. If that’s chipping it in, hitting a body, I think our whole line has great chemistry going right now.” – Bellows

  • Shuffled lines – Speaking of lines, who on Earth expected Doyle Somerby to play as a fourth line winger? That’s how crazy the new lines were, but some of the combinations bore fruit. The top line of Jordan Greenway, Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson and Clayton Keller can score at any moment. Meanwhile, the group of Nick Roberto, Patrick Harper and Bobo Carpenter isn’t too shabby, either. For JFK, the changes were necessary after a 6-3 loss in the Beanpot final to Harvard on Monday.

“Sometimes you need to do something after a game like the against Harvard. I think it was reactionary.” – Forsbacka Karlsson

  • Team Defense – The defense needs to tighten up big time, though. UNH’s top line of Tyler Kelleher, Jason Salvaggio and Michael McNicholas was potent all weekend, and BU had no answer for them. When stronger teams come around, the Terriers can ill afford to let star players shine like Kelleher and Co. did.

“Kelleher is a really good player. Every time he’s out there, he’s extremely dangerous and makes a lot of plays happen. Those other guys seem to find him all over the ice. If they can find open space they’ll be dangerous, and you have to be aware of that.” – Harper

  • Patrick Harper – Harper had himself quite the weekend, too. He had three points on Saturday night, and quietly now has 31 points on the year. For one, Quinn called hailed his performance.

“He had a great weekend. He didn’t feel great about himself after the World Juniors. You win a gold medal, he didn’t play a lot, so I think people usually come back from that and take off. Our guys haven’t. A lot of our guys have struggled or haven’t played to the best of their ability. This weekend I think a lot of those guys found their stride. He certainly was one of them. I thought this was as good as he’s played all year.” – Quinn

  • Third Period – This is still a third period team. After struggling in both first frames against UNH, BU bounced back in a major way come the third period. Across the weekend, the Terriers outscored the Wildcats, 6-0, in the stanza when it matters the most.

Highlights

Postgame Pressers

Tweets of the Weekend

Live Blog: BU hockey visits UNH

With just three games remaining in the regular season, the No. 4 Boston University men’s hockey team is back in action on Saturday night.

This go around, head coach David Quinn’s side visits the University of New Hampshire for a 7 p.m. game at the Whittemore Center.

We’ll be there all evening for the night’s actions, so be sure to follow along below!

 

Live Blog BU @ UNH – Whittemore Center
 

Lines

 

Live Blog: BU hosts UNH at Agganis Arena

The No. 4 Boston University men’s hockey team is back in action Friday night, hosting the University of New Hampshire at Agganis Arena.

Puck drop is set for 6:05 p.m. and the game will be broadcast nationally on the American Sports Network.

We’ll be live for all the game’s action, so follow along via our live blog below!

Live Blog BU vs. UNH – Agganis Arena
 

BU Lines

Preview: BU readies for home-and-home set with UNH

There’s an aura of déjà vu around Agganis Arena.

For the second time in three weeks, the No. 4 Boston University men’s hockey team approaches the weekend looking to break out of a two-game skid.

This go around, the opportunity comes via a home-and-home series against the University of New Hampshire, with Friday night’s game at Agganis and Saturday evening’s at the Whittemore Center.

“Our next goal is to win the regular season championship, and we still can do that,” said BU head coach David Quinn. “All our energy has been geared towards Friday night and putting forth our best effort.”

For a full version of this story, click here for Jonathan’s preview on The Daily Free Press.

From the FreeP: New Hampshire pushes past men’s hockey

By Meredith Perri/DFP Staff

The University of New Hampshire men’s hockey team outshot Boston University Monday afternoon. While that generally unexceptional stat does not say much about the game, a deeper look does.

The Wildcats took just one shot during BU’s lone man advantage of the game after 1:56 of the Terriers passing the puck but failing to register a chance. That lone shot made its way into the back of the net breaking a stalemate and serving as the game-winner in New Hampshire’s 3-1 victory at Agganis Arena.

“It deflated us,” said BU coach David Quinn while he shook his head. “I thought the second period we started off, we had some zone time and we looked like we may have found our way about us, but the power play just — we lead the country in giving up shorthanded goals.”

For more, read dailyfreepress.com

From the FreeP: Collier tallies 1st-career goal in loss

By Kevin Dillon/DFP Staff

Boston University freshman forward Brendan Collier has a big following at the men’s hockey team’s home games. The Charlestown native said he has between 10 and 30 family members and friends at Agganis Arena for any given home game.

While the Terriers fans did not have much to cheer about during Monday evening’s 3-1 loss to the University of New Hampshire, Collier’s crew got a nice moment when their guy scored his first collegiate goal in the first period.

Collier scooped up a loose puck after sophomore center Mike Moran forced it loose on the forecheck and snapped it between UNH goalie Casey DeSmith to give the Terriers the 1-0 lead in the first period. For Collier, it was the accomplishment of a dream.

“It’s a great feeling,” Collier said. “It’s a feeling you only get to experience once. I’ve been wishing for this day to come since I was a little kid so it’s nice for it to finally happen.”

For more, read dailyfreepress.com

Pluses & Minuses: More of the same as BU drops another vs. UNH

By Tim Healey/DFP Staff

Weather delayed the game, but it seemed as though nothing could delay the result — or how it happened. The Boston University men’s hockey team fell, 3-1, to the University of New Hampshire Monday at Agganis Arena after staying close for 60 minutes until an empty-net goal put the Terriers away.

UNH junior forward Matt Willow scored all three Wildcat goals to give him five on the weekend, making him arguably the biggest reason UNH took the two-game sweep. Here’s a look at the other factors, good and bad.

Minuses
Willows’ womping
Simply put, Willows owned the BU defense. Aside from his hat trick, Willows could have had another if not for sophomore netminder Sean Maguire‘s save on a third-period penalty shot.

Willows had seven shots on net in all — more than BU had over the course of the entire first or third periods — and is up to 18 tallies on the season.

“It always feels good to get goals,” he said. “Getting goals is probably the best feeling in the world.”

Shots
Yes, again. Friday’s shots-on-net total of 40-27 in favor of BU proved to be a one-game reprieve from an issue that has plagued BU all season. The Wildcats beat up on BU by a 38-18 margin Monday, a telling statistic when he came to time spent in the teams’ respective offensive zones.

BU also had a hard time testing UNH goalie Casey DeSmith with shots from in close. The official charts indicate the Terriers had no more than four chances from in close, including none during a third period in which UNH held a 13-4 SOG advantage.

“We didn’t do enough of that at all,” said BU coach David Quinn. “We spent zero time at their net front. That’s something we did a great job of at UNH [Friday]. On a bigger ice sheet, we were physical, we got to the net, we attacked the offensive zone with speed, and we had bodies going to the net. And we had none of that tonight.”

UNH’s shorthanded goal
It was 1-1 midway through the second when the Terriers got their first — and only — power play of the game. But after the Terriers struggled to maintain possession, then struggled to get anything on net when they did maintain possession, the Wildcats bit them in a hurry.

An offensive-zone turnover led to Willows getting the puck behind the entire BU defense. Willows capitalized on his one-on-goalie breakaway by beating Maguire high glove-side.

“It deflated us a little bit, but . . .,” Quinn said, shaking his head and failing to finish the thought. “It’s been the story of our season. You need to make good decisions. It’s not two minutes of a free opportunity to score a goal. You still have to play hockey and recognize situations. We just made a horrible, horrible play on that goal.”

The SHG was the 10th BU has given up in 2013-14, the most in Hockey East.


Standings
Given the time of year, it’s never a bad year to take stock of the Hockey East standings, even if the playoff picture is an ugly one for BU.

Right now, with four games to go, BU sits in 10th — second-to-last — with nine points and will likely have to travel for the first round of the conference tournament. If they wanted to avoid the road, where they haven’t won all season, the Terriers would need to overtake the University of Massachusetts (11 points) and the University of Notre Dame and the University of Vermont (14 each) to sneak into eighth.

If the regular season ended today, BU would head to Vermont or Notre Dame depending on tie-breakers.

Pluses
Sean Maguire
Maguire and sophomore Matt O’Connor seem to have worked somewhat in a platoon again, each starting a game this weekend. Maguire made the most of his by making 35 stops in 37 chances, including the big one on Willows’ penalty shot and a number of slick glove saves.

Penalties
BU only took three — one being Doyle Somerby‘s slashing leading to the penalty shot — and yielded zero shots on the Wildcats’ only power play. The UNH man advantage came on Maguire’s slashing at 12:37 in the third, the first penalty of his career.