Saturday, January 31, 2009


More coverage of last night's 3-1 win over Merrimack. USCHO. The Boston Herald. The Eagle Tribune. With Coach Parker's 800th win, the game becomes an "instant classic" and is featured on our This Date in Terrier Hockey page. We also have an audio interview with Matt Gilroy. is a Web site that predicts likely outcomes--final standings--for college hockey conferences and other sports, too. This is a purely statistical method of projection, based on past games. So, for example, it doesn't take into account the fact that UNH lost several games when it was forced to play a backup goalie due to an injury to Brian Foster. There''s also a "What if" page showing projections based on varying numbers of the remaining league games BU may win. As of today, the site predicts a third-place finish in regular season for BU and a 47% chance of playing for the Hockey East title. Acknowledging our bias, we think the Terriers' chances are better than that. Still, an interesting diversion. Explore a bit.

Looking forward
2009 recruit Justin Courtnall scored his 20th goal of the season in Victoria's 5-1 win over Cowichan Valley. His 53 points are 18th best in the BCHL.

Looking back
Hershey Bears forward Chris Bourque put the puck past his former BU teammate John Curry twice last night, but the former All-American netminder was the difference-maker in a 4-3 shootout win for Wilkes Barre/Scranton. Curry stopped 46 shots in regulation and overtime, then slammed the door on all four shots he faced in the shootout. With the win, he finished January with a 7-2 record and a 2.17 GAA.

Matt Radoslovich scored a goal and an assist and Chris Dyment added a helper in the Trenton Devils’s 5-1 win over Elmira in ECHL play.

Bryan Miller assisted on the tying goal and overtime game-winner in the Alaska Aces 7-6 win over Ontario. Miller now has 30 points.

Friday, January 30, 2009


BU’s 3-1 win tonight against Merrimack wasn’t the artistic success one might have hoped for. But the Warriors haven’t been making things easy for anyone lately. The victory, however, is brimming with historical significance as it was Coach Jack Parker’s 800th win. (See photo tribute here.)

Now in his 36th season as Terrier mentor, Parker becomes the third Division 1 coach to reach that towering mark—joining Ron Mason and Jerry York—as well as the first to reach 800 wins at one school. You can find complete coaching records for Jack Parker on the BU Hockey Archives site and a list of career milestones posted on our annex.

The victory raised the team’s overall record to 19-5-1, making this year’s team only the second** ever at BU to enter February with 19 wins. The feat was first achieved during the 1983-84 season (pg.2) , BU’s final year in the ECAC and the first year when the Terrier season began in October. The 83-84 team, which was 19-5-0 as of Jan. 31, finished at 28-11-1, falling to Rensselaer in the ECAC title game, then losing to Bowling Green in the NCAAs.

If you're wondering about those asterisks above, here’s the explanation. The 1993-94 team eventually had 19 pre-February wins on its record. The team’s record was 18-5-0 at the end of January, but several weeks later, an early-season 5-1 loss to Maine became a forfeit win due to the Black Bears’ use of an ineligible player (A 0-0 tie in February also became a forfeit win). So that 19th win wasn’t “earned” until well past February 1. That year's team, which reached the NCAA championship game, won 34 games, a BU record.

Tonight's 3-1 win, with goals scored by Matt Gilroy, Brandon Yip and Colby Cohen, moved the Terriers within two points of first-place Northeastern in the Hockey East standings and also kept them in the top spot in the national pairwise rankings. Goalie Kieran Millan improved his record to 15-1-1.

Game Day: BU- Merrimack

The Terriers return to North Andover for a third game with the Warriors. There, the focus will be on securing two important points to solidify BU’s second place position in the Hockey East standings and also on achieving a milestone for their coach. A win will make Jack Parker the third D1 coach to reach 800 victories.

The Daily Free Press reports that senior wing Chris Higgins will sit out tonight’s games due to the lingering affects of the concussion suffered during BU’s last trip to Thom Lawler Arena. Freshman Chris Connolly moves up from the third line to take his place. The Freep also offers some insights into the friendly rivalry between sophomore Colin Wilson and his WJC team linemate, James Van Riemsdyk of New Hampshire. (photo credit Kristyn Ulanday)

College Hockey News provides its “Tale of the Tape” matching up BU and Merrimack. From Hockey East Online, a preview of all league action this weekend.

The site, as always, provides links to game notes, gametracker, the BU audio broadcast and a pay-per-view online Webcast from B2 networks.

The Boston Herald, like other media we’ve posted recently, profiles BU co-captain Matt Gilroy who appears to be on track to become BU’s first three-time All-American since Chris Drury. Rick Meagher was the first and only three-time first-team All-American to play for BU.

USCHO’s Hockey East Weekly Column features close-up looks at the two teams—BU & NU-- that Dave Hendrickson expects to be playing for the silver Beanpot on Feb. 9.

New York Daily News online hockey columnist Elliott Olshansky reports that Chris Drury will be inducted into the Beanpot Hall of Fame, where he’ll join a dozen other ex-Terriers, including Jack Parker.The article looks at Drury’s MVP performance in the 1996 Beanpot (the first in the current Boston Garden) as well as Jack Parker’s favorite Drury/Beanpot memory.

2009 recruit Max Nicastro’s eighth goal of the season was not enough to keep Des Moines from defeating the Chicago Steel, 3-2, ending a x-game Bucs loosing streak. The right-shot defenseman is third among USHL blueliners in scoring this season with 24 points.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Thursday Linkorama

Summer gig for blueliners
Defensive partners, longtime teammates (U.S. NTDP and other programs prior to BU) and Colorado Avalanche draft picks Colby Cohen and Kevin Shattenkirk will be together again for part of the upcoming summer as counselors at the East Coast Select Elite ’95 Camp in Buffalo.

East Coast Selects is an offseason tournament and and development program that competes in tournaments all over North America. Shattenkirk and Cohen were members of ECS ’89 teams that won numerous tournaments. The ‘89s also included BC’s Nick Petrecki, Harvard’s Alex Biega (although he was an ’88), and Vermont’s Jack Downing. Both freshmen Corey Trivino and 2009 recruit Alex Chiasson participated in the ESC ’90 program.

ESC president Travis Howe notes that Colby has been a counselor the past few summers and Shattenkirk did so last summer. Howe, grandson of NHL legend Gordie, plans to attend the 2009 Beanpot where he’ll see seven ESC alumni on the ice. The ECS Web site presents “development” photo features of both Cohen and Shattenkirk.

799 and counting
As Coach Jack Parker approaches the milestone of his 800th career win, our colleague Sean Pickett (THIS DATE IN TERRIER HOCKEY) has posted Parker’s coaching record data on the BU Hockey Archives Web site.

Back on campus
Jay Pandolfo and the New Jersey Devils practiced yesterday at Agganis Arena, but the return to campus was bittersweet for the former Terrier captain and All-American wing. He’s been a healthy scratch the past three games, ever since Brendan Shanahan rejoined the Devils. And he's not in the lineup tonight for the Devil's match-up with the Bruins. For the past decade, Pando has been a defensive force for New Jersey, combining with John Madden as one of the NHL’s best penalty-killing duos.

League dispersing
Two of the four remaining schools in the College Hockey America conference—Niagara and Robert Morris--will be joining Atlantic Hockey, beginning with the 2010-2011 season. A third CHA school, Bemidji State, is expected to apply for admittance in the WCHA, which recently ended its moratorium on expansion. And now word comes that the remaining CHA school, Alabama-Huntsville, has applied to join the CCHA. The only D1 school in the South, Alabama-Huntsville also has the distinction of playing in a rink named for a genuine rocket scientist—Werner Von Braun. The breakup of CHA began in 2007 when Wayne State discontinued its hockey program. College Hockey News columnist Adam Wodon offers commentary on the dissolution of CHA.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Beanpot Fever

The 57th Annual Beanpot Tournament is five days away, and despite the presence of a league game, BU’s rematch with Merrimack, on the schedule this Friday, excitement over Boston’s annual “city championship” event is building.

The Beanpot Luncheon featuring the coaches and captains of all four teams was held yesterday and we’ll provide coverage as it becomes available. (AP Photo: Chris Drury with Beanpot after 1998 title game win, 9-6, over Harvard; Drury was Beanpot MVP in 1996; his brother, Ted, won the award in 1993, skating for Harvard.)

The Hockey on Campus radio program airs tonight from 7-9 p.m. ET and features the 3rd annual Beanpot Preview. Scheduled guests for show that airs on AM890 ESPN in Boston and 1400-AM in Lowell and streams online at, are:

● Tournament Director Steve Narzo from The Garden
● Harvard Coach Ted Donato
● BU Coach Jack Parker
● BC Coach Jerry York
● Northeastern Coach Greg Cronin

This week' program will be broadcast from Brandy Pete’s in Boston’s Financial district. Fans are invited to attend have their photo taken with the Beanpot. Bring a camera.

NESN will air its one-hour program “The Beanpot - Boston's Tournament" on Jan. 21 at 6 p.m., Jan. 28 at 3 p.m., Feb. 1 at 7 p.m., Feb. 2 at 4 p.m., Feb. 3 at 7 p.m., Feb. 4 at 2:30 p.m., Feb. 6 at 5:30 p.m.

The New Jersey Devils are in town to play the Bruins tomorrow and are practicing at Agganis Arena today. Also in town from the Metro New York area is an MSG Network crew, doing a feature story on former BU captain and All-American--and currently Rangers captain--Chris Drury.

Looking ahead
2009 recruit Justin Courtnall followed up this past weekend’s hattrick with a two-goal effort last night in Victoria’s 6-3 win over Alberni Valley. The win keeps the Grizzlies in first place in the Island Division of the BCHL’s Coastal Conference, just behind Salmon Arm for the overall league lead. Courtnall’s 2 goals give him 52 points, one more than his 51 last season, and good for 18th in BCHL scoring.


Monday, January 26, 2009

Millan named HE Defensive Player of the Week

For the second time this month, Goalie Kieran Millan has earned Pure Hockey Defensive Player of the Week honors in Hockey East's weekly release. He was similarly honored on Jan. 5, after making 33 saves in the Denver Cup championship game. Co-captain Matt Gilroy was last week's Defensive Player of the Week. Chris Higgins, Chris Connolly and Colin Wilson all earned recognition for their efforts in the sweep of New Hampshire.

The Daily Free Press wrapped up the weekend series with New Hampshire, providing a recap and a feature on the Terriers top line of Higgins, Wilson and Jason Lawrence, which has a combined 74 points.

BU has now killed 20 consecutive penalties and 73 of its opponents last 78 power play opportunties.

Looking ahead
2009 recruit Justin Courtnall’s hattrick on Saturday led Victoria (BCHL) past Merritt, 6-3, and enabled the 6’3” left wing to reach the 50-point (17-33) mark for his final BCHL season. Last year, he totaled 51 points.

US NTDP U18 wing Jeremy Morin who visited BU earlier this year, but also is considering Major Junior hockey, reached the 20 goal mark with a hattrick against Adrian College, which he followed up with a goal and two assist effort against Mahoning Valley/NAHL.


Saturday, January 24, 2009

Terriers sweep Wildcats

The Terriers completed a weekend sweep of New Hampshire with a 3-1 win in Durham, a game in which the score belied the action. Outshot 30-18, BU--for the first time this season--needed its netminder to steal a game and freshman Kiernan Millan delivered the goods. He stopped 29 shots, yielding only a deflection of Mike Sislo's shot off a Terrier skate that tied the game midway through the final period. Two of Millan’s fellow first-year players took the life out of the UNH crowd just 25 seconds later. Operating behind the UNH net, Vinny Saponari found Chris Connolly at the post and he deposited the game-winner.

Kevin Shattenkirk gave BU--now 18-5-1 and 11-5-1 in Hockey East--the initial lead with a late first-period power play goal and Chris Higgins’ empty-netter closed out the scoring.

We have recaps from the BU Web site , Hockey East Online and The Boston Globe as well as a detailed boxscore and Brian Kelley's in-game blog. Brief video highlights from NESN are here.
► Sislo’s goal at 12:57 of the third end a streak of 315+ minutes during which Millan hadn’t yield an even-strength goal. The streak began in the Denver Cup championship game with Denver’s second period goal.

► BU remains the only visiting team with a winning record—9-6-5— at the Whittemore Center.

► The Terriers were outshot for only the second time all season (first time was against Denver) and the game marked the first time BU registered fewer than 20 shots on goal.
► Higgins’ goal was his 11th, tying him with Jason Lawrence for the team lead. It also tied him with two-time All-American defenseman Bob Brown at 110 career points.

► Saponari’s assist gives him 10 points, making him the 12th Terrier to hit double figures. Colin Wilson’s 30th point—an assist on Shattenkirk’s goal—leaves him five points shy of his freshman total. Wilson leads the team in scoring.
► The win was the 799th for Jack Parker. With the next victory, he'll become the third Division 1 coach to reach 800, joining Ron Mason and Jerry York. Parker is the all-time leader in win at a single college.

Game day--same teams, different locale

Just 21 hours after the final whistle in last night’s BU win, the Terriers take on the Wildcats again, this time at the Whittemore Center in Durham, N.H. The game airs again on NESN, beginning at 7 p.m. The radio broadcast on WZZN-AM 1510 can be accessed here.

Sports Information Director Brian Kelley will provide an in-game blog throughout the contest.

College Hockey News offers its Tale of the Tape comparison of the two squads.

Tonight's game is UNH's annual "Blue Out the Whitt" event with home fans encouraged to wear blue.

In addition to the NESN video feature on Kieran Millan, posted here earlier today, Inside College Hockey also looked at how the former Spruce Grove (Alb.) Saint has established himself as BU’s top netminder.

Wilson, Millan pace blanking of UNH

Friday night's much-anticipated match-up between the #2-ranked Terriers and a surging UNH team produced a lopsided 5-0 shutout for BU and the first ever win against the Wildcats in Agganis Arena in seven tries. Sophomore Colin Wilson ended a seven-game goal-scoring drought with a pair of goals while linemate Jason Lawrence, and freshmen Vinny Saponari and Corey Trivino each added a goal. Chris Higgins, (photo: credit Melissa Wade) returned to the lineup after missing a game due to concussion and registered three assists. Netminder Kieran Millan stopped 22 shots to earn his second shutout of the season.

We have links to recaps from The Boston Herald and Hockey East along with a detailed boxscore. Dave Hendrickson’s USCHO recap features a sidebar piece by Scott Weighart on Higgins' recovery. NESN video highlights are here. Below is an audio file of Coach Jack Parker’s post-game press conference (click title to play).

► BU’s 17 wins (17-5-1) matches last year’s regular season total.
► BU’s penalty killers throttled all eight UNH power plays and have 66 successful kills in the past 71 attempts.
► The shutout was the first time the Wildcats have been blanked in 76 games, a mark that had been tied with the Terriers for longest in the nation.
► The win was the 798th of Coach Jack Parker’s career.
► Trivino, perhaps playing his best game of the year, earned an assist on a shot attempt that Saponari deflected home and a goal on an attempted cross-crease pass that deflect off a Wildcat defender. He also was dominant on faceoffs.
► Millan has now won 13 of his first 15 starts with one tie and one loss, good for a .900 winning percentage. NESN did a piece on him including interviews from the players entitled 'Calm Kieran.'
► Wilson, whom Parker called “the best player on the ice both offensively and defensively” picked the right night to be at the top of his game. Nashville Predators Assistant general manager—and former Terrier forward—Paul Fenton was in attendance to watch the centerman whom the Predators chose seventh overall in last June’s NHL entry draft.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Gameday: A pair with the Wildcats

The Terriers are back in action for a crucial home and home series with New Hampshire. Tonight at Agganis Arena—where BU has never beaten the Wildcats—and tomorrow at the Whittemore Center in Durham—where BU holds a slight edge. Currently, BU is in second place in Hockey East, two points ahead of UNH, which has a game in hand.

Freshman goalie Kieran Millan is expected to be in the Terrier lineup both nights. Chris Higgins, who suffered a concussion against Merrimack and missed Saturday’s win over BC, is listed as questionable, with a decision on his availability to be made following BU’s afternoon skate.

The BU Athletics Web site has links to game notes, gametracker, and the radio broadcast on WWZN, beginning at 7:30 p.m. Beginning at 6:30 p.m., Bernie Corbett hosts BU All-Access with sophomore Joe Pereira among the guests tonight. Both weekend games are being telecast on NESN.

Previewing the two-game series—and Hockey East’s weekend— are articles from The Daily Free Press, USCHO, HockeyEastOnline and The Union Leader. The Concord Monitor spoke with Colin Wilson and UNH’s James VanRiemsdyk, rivals tonight, but close friends and linemates on USA Hockey U-18 and Junior National teams. Both NHL first-round draft choices, they passed up opportunities to turn pro to return to Hockey East for their sophomore seasons.

► NESN’s Tom Caron got together with BU Coach Jack Parker to talk about changes in the college game during his 36 years behind the Terrier bench and offers he received to coach the Boston Bruins.'s Tim Rosenthal spoke with Terrier co-captains John McCarthy and Matt Gilroy about BU's tight-knit senior class and how they've led the team's resurgence this season.

Another party in Washington, D.C.

An invitation from The Boston University Alumni Club of Washington, D.C.:

DC-area readers of the Terrier Hockey Fan Blog are invited to join other BU alumni at their annual Beanpot Viewing Party at Regional Food and Drink (RFD)on February 2nd for the preliminary games. Alumni from the Metro DC area will take over the entire bar, turning it to a sea of Scarlet and White. Alumni from any of the other Beanpot schools—or any college hockey fan, for that matter— are welcome to join us. RFD will be “Terrier Central” from 4:30 p.m. until the last whistle is blown. Tickets are $15 in advance (or $20 at the door) and are available from the club’s Web site.

Along with the opportunity to watch the game with others who actually know what a Beanpot is, you’ll be entitled to extended drink specials, discounts on food, raffles, free snacks, a commemorative pint glass. Your ticket also is good for admittance to the Beanpot Championship game viewing party on Feb. 11th. This viewing is one of our best-attended alumni events and supports other events throughout the year. Questions can be sent to Chelsey at

► For list of Beanpot viewing parties throughout the U.S. and registration information, click here.


Thursday, January 22, 2009

Gilroy in the news

Like the NHL general managers and scouts who’ve trekked to Agganis Arena –and Denver’s Magness Arena—to see Terrier co-captain and undrafted free agent Matt Gilroy, the national media have also taken notice of BU's walk-on turned two-time All-American defenseman.

Earlier this week, we linked to a Toronto Sun article detailing the Leafs' interest in being a serious bidder for Gilroy’s services once his BU career ends. Yesterday, Matt was one of Sports Illustrated’s Faces in the Crowd.

Now, New York Times sports columnist George Vescey has profiled Gilroy, retelling the now-familiar-to-BU-fans story of how Gilroy, a late bloomer, ended up at BU and the childhood promise behind his #97 uniform. Vescey’s column appears in tomorrow’s Times print edition.

► Both games in BU’s home-and-home series with New Hampshire this weekend will air on NESN with Friday’s contest beginning at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday’s at 7:00 p.m. Due to the league’s contract with NESN, the will be no All-Access Webcast of Friday’s game at Agganis Arena, but it will air on WZZN radio and online. NESN offers a preview of the matchup.

►BU's performance thus far and its post-season prospect were on tap in this weeks Inside College Hockey podcast featurng the site's editors.

Boomer Ewing scored a goal and two assists for the victorious American Division in last night's ECHL All-Star game in Reading, Pa.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Ewing nailing goals in West Virginia

Bryan “Boomer” Ewing, who will be skating for the American Conference tonight in the ECHL All-Star game in Reading, Pa., enters the contest with a hot stick. The former Terrier winger—a 108-point scorer during his four seasons at BU—scored a hattrick and added an assist—in the Wheeling Nailers’ 5-4 loss to Cincinnati on Saturday. (Photo credit: Scott McCloskey)

It was the third hattrick for Ewing in his past 13 games. During that span, he has notched 18 goals for the Northern Conference-leading Nailers. With his recent offensive boom, Ewing has jumped to the top of the ECHL scoring leaders chart with 27-26-53 in 38 games.

Prior to tonight's game, The Intelligencer/Wheeling News-Register discussed Ewing’s prolific goal scoring and leadership contribution with his coach, Greg Puhalski. A native of West Virginia who later moved to Plymouth, Mass., Ewing took part in the League’s All-Star Skills Competition last night, participating in the shooting accuracy and breakaway relay events

Quiz-show Terriers blogger Julie Robenhymer, assessing the Terriers' recent performances, says: "This team is a dominant force that likes to play the body and moves the puck so well. They could very well be the best team in the country right now." To explore what makes this close-knit team click so well, she devised a video gameshow for BU seniors Matt Gilroy, John McCarthy, Steve Smolinsky and Brandon Yip to see how well they know one another. Part 1 (includes some game highlights). Part 2.

Hockey On Campus
The weekly radio program, co-hosted by Bernie Corbett and Paul McNamara, airs tonight from 7-9 p.m. ET on Boston’s ESPN affiliate 890-AM ESPN Boston, and will stream live online at Guests include Cornell coach Mike Schaefer and Dick Umile, coach of New Hampshire, the Terriers' opponent for a home-and-home set this weekend.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Co-Captain Matt Gilroy, with two goals and an assist in the wins over Merrimack and Boston College, was recognized as Hockey East’s Pure Hockey Defensive Player of the Week. The Toronto Sun reported that the Maple Leafs will be among the teams bidding for Gilroy’s services at the end of the season. Gilroy is an undrafted free agent.

The Terriers, now 16-5-1, remained in second place in both national polls, behind Notre Dame.

The New York Times’ Slapshot blog reported on Saturday’s 5-2 victory over BC. Blog contributor CDRAL notes that like most BU-BC games at Agganis, there was a healthy contingent of ex-Terriers on hand. Among them: Mark Hetnik, Dennis O'Connell, Brad Zancanaro, Brian Collins, Blaine Maus, Matt Marden, Mike Eruzione, Bob Murray, Jack O'Callahan, Kevin Kielt, Billy Hinch, Karson Gillespie, Tony Ruvolo, Dan Ronan, Tom O'Regan, John Danby, and Mike Prendergast.

Junior center Luke Popko, whose on-ice chemistry with Zach Cohen has help BU’s fourth become an offensive threat, was interviewed on BU All-Access last week. To listen to the segment, click here, then choose “Free Events” and scroll down to 1/14.

Former Terrier Chris Bourque, who has been called up the NHL by the Washington Caps twice this season, will be in the lineup for this Sunday’s AHL-All-Star game.

Ryan Whitney was the subject of the “Name that Squirt” video during Sunday’s NBC broadcast of the Penguins-Rangers game. Moment later he threaded a perfect pass to send Peter Sykora in alone for a goal.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Terriers power past Eagles

Playing perhaps their best game of the season, the Terriers dominated BC, 5-2, to win the regular season series (2-0-1) and move into second place in Hockey East, four points behind Northeastern. After Eagle goalie John Muse held BU at bay in the first period, stopping 18 shots, the Scarlet scored on four of ten power plays and added one even-strength goal. BU outshot BC 46-21 and the Terriers attempted 81 shots. Photo credit--Justine Hunt/The Boston Globe.
  • USCHO's Scott Weighart, in his game recap, noted:

"One night after being benched by coach Jack Parker due to a lack of defensive focus, blueliner Colby Cohen went from doghouse to top dog, earning top star honors with a goal and an assist on top of a solid showing in his own end. "

We also have recaps from The Boston Globe, The Boston Herald and Hockey East Online. Detailed boxscore. Video highlights. We also have an audio file of Jack Parker's post-game remarks to the media below.

► Three stars:1. Colby Cohen, 2. David Warsofsky,3. John Muse

► Nine of Warsofsky's 14 assists have come in the last seven games.

► BU has four of the top eight HE defensemen in scoring: Cohen is tied for 2nd at 16; Matt Gilroy tied for 4th at 15; Warsofsky tied for 6th at 14; and, Kevin Shattenkirk 8th with 13

Nick Bonino’s 2nd-period power play goal ended a six-game goal-scoring drought. His last previous goal came on a lunging clear that found its way into an empty net in the waning seconds of the Dec. 6 win at BC.

Colin Wilson , who has a team-leading 26 points, was dominant on faceoffs winning 17 of 25 draws. Bonino won 8 of 12.

► The victory was Coach Jack Parker’s 797th career win and 71st against BC (71-55-12).

Looking ahead
2009 recruits Alex Chiasson and Max Nicastro went head-to-head last night with the latter's Chicago Steel winning, 4-3. Nicastro's assist gives him 23 points, second among all USHL defensemen and trailing only his teammate, John Moore, a Colorado College recruit. Chiasson continues to have a hot hand for Des Moine, scoring twice--his first multiple goal game for the struggling Bucs. The right winger from Quebec has taken over point leadership on Des Moines with 28.

Justin Courtnall contributed an assist and earned the game’s third star as Victoria doubled up Powell River, 4-2, in BCHL play.

Looking back
Former Terrier Matt Radoslovich scored twice on Friday to pace the ECHL Trenton Devils to a 3-2 win against Dayton. On the game-winning goal, he was assisted by former BU co-captain Chris Dyment.

The Patriot Ledger offers a feature article on the high school coaching careers of brothers Bob and Jim Sylvia. Bob Sylvia, who has been behind the Quincy High School bench for 43 seasons, was co-captain of Jack Kelley’s first winning team at BU. The 1964-65 team finished with a 25-6 record and began a 15-year period of dominance in Eastern hockey.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Opinion: The State of Agganis

by Candycanes99, BU '09

It’s been just over 4 years since Agganis Arena opened on January 3, 2005, replacing Walter Brown Arena as the primary location of BU hockey. Much to the dismay of many who experienced the old rink's glory days, the only time the men’s ice hockey team skates on the Walter Brown ice is when their practices are displaced due to concerts at HAA. Voiced annoyances about the new facility have been numerous, and not without cause. The acoustics are not as conducive to the mind-numbing noise that made Section 8 such an intimidating force. Of course, the low ceiling of WBA couldn't be duplicated in a much larger facility. The surroundings are being made too family friendly for real hockey. The overeager HAA security could probably make up a reason to eject your grandmother from games. Even more recently, an unwelcome goal horn, spurning the traditional band celebration.

Let’s step back and take a look at the resume of the program since the arena opened, and more importantly, how that affects the current team. Despite the success of the teams in the 1990s, recruiting classes were falling short of expectations in early twenty-first century. This 2008-2009 BU team is one of the first where all four classes were recruited to play exclusively in the state of the art facility. There are many other factors that make up a successful team, but it is evident that Agganis has helped the program take a step towards returning as a national power by attracting blue chip recruits.

Still, there remains a perceived difference from Walter Brown in the student sections. HAA118+HAA108≠WBA8. At least not with those two sections at opposite ends of the arena, and it doesn’t appear that the staff will be changing that. The burden has been placed on the students, most of whom have never felt the excitement and passion of a game at WBA, to replicate that environment in a much larger building. Adapting to Agganis Arena has been a challenge for the Dog Pound, and providing leadership has been a tough task for a group that is still trying to establish a solid identity.

However, the student fans still show up every game, cheering at the top of their lungs. Some ad lib vulgar chants don’t make it out of the section (probably for the better) but still rile up the rest of the section. The cheer routines have become a little too predictable over the past few years, but this season’s fan leaders have made great strides in communicating with the fan contingency to establish weekly chants (although I’m still not sure why the “Oh my 'Darling'” cheer didn’t catch on). The group has long striven for creativity, but the raw passion in basic chants has been more consistent of late.

This is finally showing an effect on the ice, too. The Terriers have at last built a home ice advantage, and have won 17 of their last 22 contests at Agganis Arena. The success of the team has drawn even more students to the games in section 108. Having even more students in other sections that need to learn cheers, chants, etc., is a tough task to tackle, but all they need to do for now is show up, stand up, and scream “Go BU!” There will doubtless be many students who show up to the game against our Commonwealth Avenue rival tonight who won’t have a clue who drafted Colin Wilson, and don’t know why Luke Popko just keeps dumping it in, and aren’t really sure why "BC sucks." But, it won’t be long before they learn the latter though, no matter what the outcome of the game is. The experience of being a BU hockey fan will be just starting for those students, and that experience is still one that will bring them back for more.

A costly victory

BU dominated Merrimack on the scoreboard last night, winning 4-1 with goals from Jason Lawrence (2, photo), Matt Gilroy and Andrew Glass. But this one got ugly as the low-scoring Warriors (a dozen games tallying one goal or less) found themselves behind by four late in the second period and their frustration turned the game chippy. The officiating team, led by referee Dave Hansen, apparently lost control of the game, which had a total of 97 penalty minutes—50 in the final period.

An incensed BU Coach Jack Parker accused the Merrimack players of taking “vicious runs” resulting in two of his players getting “cold-cocked.” Those two were senior Chris Higgins who sustained a head cut and a concussion and Senior co-captain Gilroy who reportedly suffered a separated shoulder and a chest injury. Neither is expected to play in tonight’s home matchup with BC. According to a College Hockey News account, Parker was very critical of the game officials, league Commission Joe Bertagna and supervisor of officials Dick DeCaprio, a former Terrier.

We have a disappointing game account from USCHO that doesn't mention the injuries and the detailed boxscore from the BU Athletics Web site.

► Lawrence's two goals gave him a career-high ten on the season, drawing him even with senior classmates Higgins and Brandon Yip for the team lead. Both goals came on the power play, giving him nine man-advantage goals on the season--second best in the nation.

►BU shook up its second and third lines with Chris Connolly centering the second line and Nick Bonino the third. Bonino had a pair of assists and won 10 of 14 faceoffs.

►Glass had his first two-point game, assisting on Gilroy’s goal and then adding the third goal of the first period.

►Netminder Kieran Millan lost his shutout late in the third when Merrimack scored on a 5-on-3 power play. He made one sparkling save in the final period while improving his record to 11-1-1. Millan will be in goal again tonight against the Eagles.

Looking ahead
BU’s two USHL all-star game representatives, 2009 recruits Alex Chiasson and Max Nicastro, continued to find themselves on the scoring sheet in league play. Nicastro , who scored a goal and an assist in Chicago’s 6-2 loss to Indiana, has 11 points (4g, 7a) in his last 11 games. Chiasson assisted on both Des Moines goals in last night’s 3-2 loss to Cedar Rapids—his third mult-point game in the past four games, He has 12 points (3g, 9a) in the past seven games.

Looking back
Tell me if you've heard this one before....Chris Drury scored the game-winning goal....
Mr. Clutch did it again, scoring in overtime to give the Rangers a 3-2 victory, their first win in Chicago since 2000. Drury, who deflected a slapshot in the extra period for the win, also scored New York's first goal. Video.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Gameday: BU takes on Merrimack

The Terriers are back on the ice tonight, for the third time in seven days, to take on Merrimack in North Andover. BU beat the Warriors, 5-2, in an October matchup at Agganis Arena. Merrimack has nine conference losses, but six of them were one-goal losses--and they have excellent goaltending. Freshman netminder Kieran Millan will play tonight's game and tomorrow's home matchup with BC as well, according to Coach Jack Parker, quoted in The Daily Free Press.

We have links to USCHO’s weekly Hockey East Column, and a preview article from BU Athletics with links to Live Stats and WZZN’s radio broadcast.

The Patriot Ledger talks with freshman defenseman David Warsofsky’s (photo) about his adjustment to Division 1 hockey and his standout play during BU’s trip to Denver.

► Hockey East’s season-long voting on outstanding performers during the league’s 25th anniversary continue. Former BU captain, All-American and Hobey Baker Award winner Chris Drury was voted top defensive forward.

► The 57th Beanpot Tournament is just around the corner with the first round game against Harvard scheduled for 5 p.m. on Feb.2 at TD Banknorth Garden. Beanpot watch parties have been set up all over the country, from Florida to California. Click here for a list with links to preregister, and check out a video from a recent Beanpot watch party in Jacksonville, Fla.

Hockey East Quiz: Former UNH goalie Kevin Regan was called up to the Bruins last week, but just for a practice. However, eight former Hockey East goalies have seen time between the pipes in NHL games this year. Who are they? Answers to follow this weekend.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Looking ahead: All-Stars

2009 recruits Alex Chiasson and Max Nicastro (photo) get an early chance to be teammates as both were named to the Eastern Division squad for the 2009 USHL Prospects/
All-Star Game, to be hosted by the Sioux Falls Stamepde on Wednesday, February 4, 2009. Chiasson was the only player to be selected from Des Moines. Former BU goalie Brett Bennett also was named to the Eastern Division team.

Earlier this season, Nicastro played for the winning Team USA in the World Junior A Challenge and scored a power play goal in the gold-medal game.

Justin Courtnall, also a 2009 recruit, played for the Interior Division team, which was thumped the Coastal Division, 12-5, in the BCHL All-Star game last night. Salmon Arm’s Conor Morrison, who scored twice for the Interior Division, is, according to several sources, on the recruiting radar of BU and Wisconsin, among others. Like Chiasson, he previously played for Northwood Prep and graduated from that school.

2011 recruit Charlie Coyle scored on a breakaway 59 seconds into overtime to give Thayer Academy a 1-0 upset win over Belmont Hill is New England prep action. Coyle, a cousin of ex-Terrier and NHL star Tony Amonte, was a standout in the 2008 Select 16 Festival, earning kudos from USHR: "Charlie Coyle (#18 Black/Thayer Academy) is the top finisher on the undefeated Black team, and is another who has made a big statement here."

Looking back

Former Terrier co-captain and current radio broadcast analyst Tom Ryan is featured in The Boston Globe today. This season, he’s returned to his high school alma mater, Newton North, as head hockey coach and aims to return the Tigers to the top level in Massachusetts schoolboy hockey.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Friars end Terriers' unbeaten streak

BU’s eight-game unbeaten streak (7-0-1) came to screeching halt as Providence upended the Terriers, 4-2, last night at Agganis Arena. The Friars new goalie, Alex Beaudry stopped 39 of 41 BU shots, while the visitors capitalized on three BU errors and a 5-on-3 power play. BU received power play goals from seniors Chris Higgins and Brandon Yip (photo).

Following the game, BU Coach Jack Parker (audio clip) said, “I want to give Providence a lot of credit. It's the first time we've had a team come in here and outplay us. I'm not upset with my team. We played hard, they played harder. It wasn’t like we cruised out there. Their goaltender played very, very well."

We have recaps from The Daily Free Press, USCHO and The Boston Herald. Detailed boxscore. Video highlights.

BU has two days to regroup before this weekend’s games at Merrimack and at home against Boston College.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Gameday: Terriers vs. Friars

BU returns to the ice tonight for its final Tuesday game of the season and its first meeting of the year with Providence. The Friars are on a two-game winning streak while the second-ranked Terriers are unbeaten in the past eight games (7-0-1). BU’s Web site has links to game notes, gametracker and the audio and video Web casts. We also have a link to Providence game notes.

Jim Connolly’s Boston Herald college hockey column looks at the Terrier defense that Coach Jack Parker terms “as good a corps of defensemen as I’ve ever had.”

Looking ahead

NHL Central Scouting’s Midterm Rankings of North American draft-eligble players are out. Among BU recruits, Alex Chiasson (photo) is #34, 2010 recruit Wade Megan is #130, and 2010 recruit Sean Escobedo is #208. Max Nicastro was a third round choice of Detroit in 2008 and Justin Courtnall was a seventh round choice of Tampa Bay in 2007.

2009 recruit Courntall picked up his 14th goal of the season on a breakaway as Victoria beat Alberni Valley, 5-2 on Friday.

On Saturday, three BU recruits—Chicago’s Nicastro (2009) and Des Moines’ Chiasson (2009) and Yassin Cissé (2010)—got together on the ice. Nicastro’s two assists helped the Chicago Steel winning 6-4, while Chiasson and Cissé each had an assist for slumping Des Moines. Chiasson has a six-game scoring streak. Nicastro is third among USHL defensemen in scoring with 20 points (6-14) equally his total from last season. EDIT--Score sheet was changed and Nicastro had only one assist against Des Moines, but his performance in three games earned him USHL Defensive Player of the Week.

The Unofficial USHL Blog has been grading teams and key players at the season’s midpoint. Some relevent comments about Terrier recruits:
"Chiasson is a player that I feel is extremely dangerous every time he touches the ice. He is very good with the puck and is an excellent sniper."

"Nicastro is the type that's not going to wow you with his offensive skills, but he's very solid in all aspects of the game. I think Detroit got a nice player and if they allow him to continue to develop, they will be very happy."
Jacob Cepis, who left Bowling Green last month and considered several leading Division I school to continue his education, has enrolled at Minnesota and will be eligible in January 2010. Cepis had a very good visit to BU and the Terriers were a finalist.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Monday Linkorama

More from Saturday night’s 4-1 victory of Maine. Detailed boxscore. Video highlights

► The win extended BU’s unbeaten streak against the Black Bears to ten.

Brandon Yip is the leads all current Terriers in points against Maine with eight, but Saturday’s goal on rebound was his first (1-7-8).

► BU has now scored in 15 consecutive periods. One streak that ended was the Terriers’ successful penalty-kill run that reached 28 before Robbie Dee’s power play goal in the first period. BU held Maine at bay during four more man-advantage situations—including a 5-minute power play. BU now has killed 39 of the last 41.

► Entering the third period with a two-goal lead, BU clamped down on the Maine offense, allowing just three shot—one a center-ice clear-in—during the final 20 minutes.

► Freshman Kieran Millan, with a 6-1-1 record, has the best winning percentage among Hockey East goalies at .812.

► Eight of Chris Higgins’ nine goals have come in Hockey East games, including a pair of game-winners.

Chris Connolly (photo) has had five two-point games this season and has 14 points overall. He’s tied for second in freshman scoring in league games with 5-4-9.

► One battle the Terriers didn't win was faceoffs where Maine had a 32-24 advantage. It was just the second time during the current eight-game winning streak in which BU was on the short end of draws.

► Bostonia Magazine’s Winter 2008-09 issue features an interview with Terrier head coach Jack Parker in which he looks back at his 35 years behind the Terrier bench.

► USCHO columnist and television analyst Dave Starman, discussing college hockey players from the New York City area, wrote that “Kevin Shattenkirk (New Rochelle, N.Y.) of BU is among the best five defensemen in the NCAA, along with Long Island’s Matty Gilroy.”

► Three Terriers are among those named for the Hobey Baker Award fan vote: Yip, Gilroy and Colin Wilson.

Looking back
Boomer Ewing, third in scoring in the ECHL (22-24-46), may soon find himself reunited with John Curry in Wilkes Barre/Scranton.

Bryan Miller is fifth in the ECHL among defensemen with a 6-18-24 line, which is best on the Alaska Aces. Miller was an ECHL All-Star last season with the Aces.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Terriers Roll On

The Terriers maintained their winning ways with a convincing 4-1 win over the Black Bears. Chris Connolly paced the home team with the first two goal game of his freshman season. The Terriers are 7-0-1 in their last eight games, and they have not lost to Maine in their last 10 matchups. Jack Parker edged closer to the 800-win milestone with #795. Also of note, the Terriers now sit atop the PWR rankings. (Photo courtesy of the Boston Herald)

Coverage: USCHO, Boston Globe, Boston Herald, and BU Sports.

Up next for the Terriers - a rare Tuesday game against Providence, who earned their first league win last night against UMass-Lowell.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Gameday: Terriers resume HE play vs. Maine

Terriers and the Maine Black Bears face off tonight at Agganis Arena for the 100th time. The teams first met in the 1923-24 season, but didn’t play again until 1979. BU leads the series, 48-42-9. The Terriers welcome sophomores Colin Wilson and Kevin Shattenkirk back to the lineup while Maine defenseman Simon Danis-Pepin is expected to return from an injury. We have game notes and links to game tracker and internet audio and video broadcasts.

The Kennebec Morning Sentinel previewed the game from the Black Bears' point of view.

The first 2009 installment of BU All Access will air today at 6 p.m. ET, prior to the Maine game, on WZZN and online.

Last night’s Hockey East schedule produced a pair of games tied in the final seconds on extra-attacker goals. UMass pulled even with New Hampshire with just four seconds remaining, while Vermont knotted its game against BC with just one second left in regulation.

Looking ahead
2009 recruit, defenseman Max Nicastro scored Chicago’s first goal and then assisted on the game-winner in the Steel’s 2-1 win against Cedar Rapids. The California native has eight points in his past eight games and 19 points overall, one fewer than last season.

Alex Chiasson’s 11th goal—unassisted on a power play—put Des Moines on the board against Lincoln, but it wasn’t enough as the Bucs fell again, 4-2. Chiasson has 22 points in 24 games.

Looking back
Former BU All-American goalie John Curry earned his seventh win in nine starts—a 4-2 win over Binghamton—since being returned to Wilkes Barre/Scranton from Pittsburgh.

Former Terrier Captain Sean Sullivan assisted on both goals in the San Antonio Rampage’s 2-1 win against Milwaukee.

David VandGulik’s 10th goal of the season tied Quad City with Toronto in the third period in a game the Flames won, 3-2, in overtime.

Boomer Ewing scored his 20th goal in 33 ECHL games and added an assist but the Wheeling Nailers were doubled up, 8-4, by Dayton.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Coach's Mailbag--January 2009

Coach Jack Parker has responded to our second batch of questions, provided by blog readers. We'll plan at least one more Coach's Mailbag this season.

Q—Hey Coach, how come the Hockey East games this year have not been as wide open as the early season games against North Dakota and Michigan? Is this because the Hockey East teams play better defense, or have you been playing league games closer to the vest? I miss the high flying offense that scored 6 and 7 goals a game.
JP—Most teams in HE have solid goaltending and we have a better knowledge of each other's tendencies.

Q—In addition to the solid goaltending, what have been the contributions of this year’s freshman class and who has been the most pleasant surprise among them?
JP—All of the freshmen have made contributions, but three stick out. Dave Warsofsky, Chris Connolly and Vin Saponari have all played extremely well - the surprise being that they all have been very important in the special teams as well.

Q—After a recent game (UVM), you stated that the team didn't handle the trap particularly well. Who bears the greater responsibility to beat the trap, forwards or defenseman? Can it be beaten by a series of sharp, precise passes?
JP— It is usually the players without the puck that expose the trap. They must move into close support areas where passes can be completed.

Q—It seems that the team has shifted the power-play strategy from a Box-in-1 variant to more of an umbrella formation. Was there any particular reason for this shift? I thought the Box-in-1 was more successful against quicker teams early in the season. Does it hinge on size matchups?
JP—The Box + one set-up is used only when we are two men up. We use either the 1-3-1; overload, or BU power play set-ups in 5 on 4 situations. It usually depends on the other team’s penalty kill tendencies. Are they in a tight box? Do they try to block shots in front of their goalie? Are they playing all-out pressure?

Q—Having Chris Higgins’ goal waived off in the UM-Lowell game was frustrating. The replay appeared to show the puck deflecting of Higgins’ skate as he was stopping, which, according to the NCAA rule book, should be allowed as a goal. Why can’t the NCAA get the interpretation of the rule concerning kick-in pucks correct in game situations, especially after the controversy over the waived-off Notre Dame goal in last year’s championship game?
JP—The NCAA does "get it" and has communicated that to everyone. It was that particular referee who couldn't overrule himself - ego and stubbornness are bad human traits.

Q—It seems that the number of players leaving early for the pros is increasing. Does that change, in any way, the type of player you recruit? (e.g., smaller forwards who may excel at college level but maybe not be big enough physically to make the early jump to the pros).
JP—No - we try to get the best player available. I'll take the next Tony Amonte or Scott Lachance again, even for a few years.

Q—Do TV timeouts impact the flow of a game? If your team has the momentum, do these timeout help the other team regroup?
JP—The thirty second TO's have no effect. The full minute TO's that some broadcasts use are bad for both teams. They slow the game down emotionally.

Q—What/who has been the most pleasant surprise for BU Hockey so far this season?
JP—Easy - Zach Cohen. He has played extremely well thus far; before the season started, he did not enter into my plans.

Q—After 25 years in Hockey East, do you have a favorite HE Tournament memory? And did you expect the league would ever become so competitive from top to bottom?
JP—Shawn McEachern’s ovetime goal to beat Maine in '91 (Hockey East championship game) certainly was a highlight. As far as the balance now in HE - -it was unimaginable ten years ago.

Q—What is the most difficult place you've ever had to go on a recruiting visit to a players home (e.g., weather, obscure location)?
JP—Long answer - I flew into Moncton, NB, and needed to rent a car to drive 200 miles north of Moncton to see a kid play. When I tried to rent a car at the only booth in the airport, they noticed that my license expired five days earlier. My birthdate is 3/11/45 and it was the sixteen of March and my expiration date was 3/11/84. I took a cab into town and went to the movies (I saw The Godfather) to kill some time 'till the shift changed at the rental desk. I then went back out to the airport and gave the new person my license. He said that it looked like my license had expired and I replied "Oh, no, not 'till the 3rd of November - day 3, month 11, year 84. - He said OK is that how you do it down there and gave me a car. I then drove the two hundred miles directly to the rink - walk in after the warm up to learn that the kid I came to see got in a fight in warm ups and was ejected from the game. I never saw him play and he went to Cornell. Great trip!

Q—The consolation game of the Beanpot final night is a dog game. It's 5:00 start for two clubs that want to be playing in the later game and has no meaning to league standings. It's pretty deserted, attended by mostly family and girlfriends. Why not have the women play their Beanpot Championship that night? It would give them a night on the garden ice and will help grow interest in the woman's game, it will give the fan a reason to go earlier, and it will give provide TWO championship games in one night!
JP—First - none of Beanpot games have any meaning to league standings. Second - it is a scheduled game for all four teams’ 34-game schedule. If you didn't play it, those two teams would be the only two Division I teams in the country that didn't play 34 games (other that Ivy league). And it is exactly the same as BU playing RPI in Denver in front of a sparse crowd. It is a non-league NCAA "pair wise" game. It must be played!
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