Goliath slew Cinderella at 1:57 of additional time within the thirty eighth Hockey East championship recreation on Saturday night time on the TD Garden.
Freshman sensation Lane Hutson scored his second of the sport on a slap shot from the blue line to raise No. 5 ranked and high seed Boston University to 3-2 victory over upstart Merrimack earlier than a packed home from each camps.
“I saw Matt Brown had the puck down low and the Merrimack guys were collapsing down on him,” mentioned Hutson, the Hockey East Rookie of the Year and Tournament MVP. “I called for the puck and he put it right on my tape.”
BU (27-10-0, 19-6-0) received its tenth Hockey East title in its thirteenth championship look and secured a No. 2 seed at subsequent weekend’s NCAA Manchester Regional. Michigan, which upset No.1 Minnesota within the Big 10 Championship, is predicted to get the No.1 seed at Manchester. Merrimack fell to 23-13-1 and 16-9-0 and is winless in its two Hockey East championship recreation appearances.
“I am really proud of our group and these guys have been so resilient all year,” mentioned BU coach Jay Pandolfo, who turned the one coach to win the title in his first season. “It has made my job actual straightforward and it has made my job straightforward.
“I know we are not done yet but to get this first one that we really wanted to win this year.”
The contextual enormity of what Merrimack was up in opposition to could be discovered with a peek on the strains chart. BU has 12 NHL draft picks and a Hobey Baker finalist (Lane Hutson) on its roster and the Terriers swept the common season sequence. Merrimack has three NHL draft picks.
“The only real disappointment for them is that we were obviously playing for more that just wins and losses and that is what hurts these guys,” mentioned Merrimack coach Scott Borek. “Our whole team played good.”
Boston University entered the lacking two influential seniors, each of whom had been casualties from the Terriers’ semifinal win over Providence College.
Defenseman Case McCarthy suffered a damaged collarbone when he hit the tip boards within the third interval. First line heart Wilmer Skoog was suspended one recreation by Hockey East for boarding PC’s Cam McDonald at 8:40 of the third. Senior Jay O’Brien stuffed in for Skoog on first line whereas freshman Lachlan Getz was added to the third blue line unit.
“We have a lot of leadership on this team, a lot of seniors and juniors and some of out freshman have grown as leaders, Lane being one of them,” mentioned Pandolfo.
Merrimack defensemen Mike Brown was sweating out a hooking name within the cooler when the Warriors went up 1-0 on a short-handed aim by Christian Felton at 6:51 of the primary.
Senior right-wing Ben Brar intercepted a again cross to the Terriers’ unattended level and made tracks down the best boards. Brar centered the puck to Brown, who slipped it between Drew Commesso’s pads for his fifth of the season. Brown scored the primary shortie within the championship recreation since 2001.
BU’s rotation took one other hit at 18:49 of the primary when senior defenseman and workforce captain Domenick Fensore was drilled in opposition to the boards by Merrimack heart Tristan Crozier and left the sport.
BU opened the second interval with a 5-on-3 benefit when Brown and Brar had been penalized 10 seconds aside within the closing minute of the primary. Fensore returned and arrange the tying aim 38 seconds into the body. BU was nonetheless on a 5-on-3 when Fensore fed Hutson for a one-timer from the best circle for his thirteenth of the season.
Merrimack went up 2-1 on a set play within the offensive zone at 15:09. Graduate heart Tristan Crozier received the draw again to senior left-wing Mac Welsher on the high of the best circle. Welsher uncorked a one-time slapper that beat Commesso for his seventh of the season. BU was up 22-17 in pictures on aim after two intervals.
BU tied the sport 2-2 on an ideal particular person effort by fourth line left wing Devin Kaplan at 9:02 of the third. The freshman from Bridgewater, N.J., made a round swing via the slot and fired a wrist shot that beat Merrimack goalie Hugo Ollas to the far put up for his tenth of the season.