Friday, March 22, 2013

Game Day: BU vs. BC—To stay alive--UPDATED

Terriers return to TD Garden tonight in the featured game of the Hockey East semifinals as they take on arch-rival Boston College. The Terriers and Eagles haven’t met since December 1 when BC clinched the regular season series, two games to one, with a 5-2 win.

Jack Parker, who will be either coaching his final game behind the Terrier bench or leading the Terriers to the Hockey East championship game for the tenth time, has 896 career wins, all at BU. But he won’t be matched up against longtime rival and friend Jerry York, who will miss the game due to eye surgery.

Tonight’s game is the teams’ fourth matchup in the Hockey East semifinals in the past 11 seasons. In 2003, BU won, 6-5, in 2OT. BC won, 6-2, in 2007 and the Terriers took a 3-2 win in 2009, en route to an NCAA title.

The 262nd game in the Commonwealth Avenue rivalry will air in New England on NESN and nationally on NBC Sports Network with puck drop scheduled for 8 p.m.ET, depending on the finish of the early semifinal matching UMass-Lowell and Providence.

The Eagles are led by Hockey East Player of the Year Johnny Gaudreau (49 points), Steve Whitney (43) and veteran goalie Parker Milner (2.52 GAA).

Terriers, who have now won four games in a row and six of the last seven to reach the 20-win mark for the 27th time in Parker’s head coaching career, boast one of the nation’s hottest lines with leading scorer Danny O’Regan (36 points) centering top-goal scorer Matt Nieto (18) and Evan Rodrigues (32 points). BU, which played mostly a five-man rotation on defense last week, will be reinforced by the return of junior blueliner Garrett Noonan, who was injured during the final weekend of regular-season play.

With Matt O’Connor sidelined, freshman Sean Maguire continues to be the man in the Terrier net. In the quarterfinals, he led all conference goalies with a .958 save percentage and produced a 1.50 GAA.

● preview, Game Notes, Game Tracker, WWZN Radio Webcast, Twitter Updates
● Boston Hockey Blog live in-game blog
Daily Free Press preview
● WTBU Sports WTBU Sports: Power Play Changes Providing Points
● USCHO Hockey East semifinals preview 
● College Hockey News Tale of the Tape and Coaching legends and young leaders
● HockeyEastOnline Coaches Media Teleconference Jack Parker comments
● ESPN Boston preview
● Patriot Ledger preview
● Boston Herald preview
● All Conferences championship weekend schedule and TV games.

Hockey East named its all-star teams. Rodrigues picked for the  2nd team, while Wade Megan and Matt Grzelcyk earned honorable mention.

USCHO Hockey East Correspondent Dave Hendrickson reprised this two-part Parker feature, “The Grandmaster,” on the occasion of his 600th coaching win in 2000, noting that the profile “still holds up well today.” Part I, Part II

►Boston Hockey Blog reports that BU will play  Maine at next January’s Frozen Fenway.

Looking back
Last season’s top Terrier scorer, Alex Chiasson was recalled by the Dallas Stars from its AHL affiliate.  The 6-4 right wing had a 12-20-32 scoring line in 53 games.

Brandon Yip scored his third goal of the season in Nashville's 5-2 win against Calgary.

Women’s Team
Making their fourth consecutive appearance in the NCAA tournament, the Terriers take on Mercyhurst in the semifinals in Minneapolis. The Lakers, CHA champions, upset Cornell in the quarterfinals, while BU ousted Clarkson to tie a program-best 27 wins. Puck drop is 9 p.m. ET.

Junior co-captain Marie-Philip Poulin (51) and senior Isabel Menard (44) are BU’s top point-getters, while senior Jennelle Kohanchuk and freshman Sarah Lefort are tied for the goal-scoring lead at 23. Junior goalie Kerrin Sperry brings a 23-4-3 record and a 2.14 GAA into the contest.

● preview, Frozen Four Central, GameTracker, NCAA Webcast, WTBU Radio Webcast
● Daily Free Press preview and sendoff video 
BU Today preview

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