In a relentlessly hard-fought contest, the Boston University mens’ hockey team failed to put the puck in the net, and lost a 1-0 heartbreaker to Boston College at Agganis Arena Saturday night. The rival Eagles scored early in the first period when, with the Terriers looking to break out from behind their goal on a first-period power play, junior Pete MacArthur received a pass from senior Kevin Schaeffer. The puck went off his stick and deflected off senior goaltender John Curry’s skate, sneaking across the goal line before Curry could recover it. Sophomore Nathan Gerbe, who cleared the puck prior to the goal, received credit for the shorthanded tally at the 3:17 mark. The loss drops the Terriers to 5-3-5 and 3-3-4 in Hockey East play.
Last night’s effort was the Terriers’ second matchup against the Eagles this weekend. A Friday night game at BC’s Conte Forum was called off after 10 minutes of play when unusually warm weather caused fog to form just above the ice. Officials decided the poor visibilty presented a risk to players.
Consequently, last night’s loss was the ninth-ranked Terriers first three-period meeting with BC since the NCAA regionals last March, when they were blown out by Boston College, 5-0, after a remarkable 22-3-2 run. That loss, in Worcester, came after BU had beaten BC in four out of five meetings during the season. “It’s hard to beat a team five times in a season, even a bad team — and BC was certainly not a bad team,” said BU coach Jack Parker before last night’s game. “We just want to continue what we did last year and remember that BC is not the only team in this league.”
BU went into last night’s battle having just completed an undefeated four-game homestand, but in each of its three victories — and one tie — the team couldn’t score more than two goals, and barely eked out a 1-0 win over Providence on November 17. BU had been averaging 2.22 goals a game, compared to BC’s 3.14.
The Terriers have been relying on the stellar goaltending of John Curry (CAS’07) to bail them out, but Parker would like to see that change. “He’s very important to us, but he shouldn’t be as important as he is right now,” says the coach. Curry, who was named conference Defensive Player of the Week on November 6 after stopping 56 of 59 shots in back-to-back games against UMass-Lowell and Maine, ranks third among conference netminders, with a 1.83 goals-against-average.
Parker is also bothered by the startling number of tie games — five so far — on BU’s record, especially because several of them could have easily been losses. “We had to come from behind to tie three teams,” he says. In the Terriers’ latest knotted affair, on November 28, they held onto a 2-1 lead against UMass for exactly 82 seconds before the Minutemen scored the tying goal.
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Brian Fitzgerald can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.