Saturday, January 12, 2013

Defense leads Terriers past Merrimack, 4-1

Strong defense, solid goaltending, and goals from Captain Wade Megan, juniors Sahir Gill and Matt Nieto and sophomore Cason Hohmann paced a 4-1 Terrier win at Merrimack last night. Freshman netminder Sean Maguire earned his fifth consecutive victory, stopping 37 shots. Over the five games he has a 1.00 GAA and a .966 save percentage.

Coming off Wednesday’s disappointing overtime loss to Harvard, BU forced Merrimack to shoot from the outside, blocking numerous shots. Despite taking 29 shots in the first two periods, the Warriors managed just seven grade-A chances. Merrimack outshot BU 38-24 for the game.

Megan opened the scoring in the first period with a shorthanded wrist shot past Rasmus Tirronen after taking control in his own end and weaving through the Warriors. BU nearly doubled the score on a power play when freshman Ahti Oksanen rang a shot off the crossbar and a Nieto shots went off the post.
In the second period, junior Alexx Privitera faked a shot from the point, then put a slap pass on the stick of Gill in the slot and the junior wing deflected it into the net for his second goal in the past three games. Then Megan’s centering pass to the slot was deflected home by Hohmann for a 3-0 lead.

BU’s fourth goal, like its third, came on the rush with Nieto converting a Danny O’Regan pass from just outside the crease. Merrimack spoiled the shutout late in the final period on Kyle Bigos’ blast through a screen.

Megan, who earned first-star honors with strong efforts at both ends of the ice, commented: 
Credit our guys, they just played phenomenal defensively. All of the little stuff that we were doing in the first half is coming back now. We need to do a lot more of the same.”
►Terriers were dominant on faceoffs with Hohmann winning 18 of 25 draws.

►Privitera blocked nine Warrior shots giving him a team-high total of 52.
►BU has won four of its past five conference games and has moved into second place in Hockey East, three points behind BC.

Merrimack’s Bigos and BU freshman Sam Kurker’s late-game skirmish earned both players minors and game misconduct penalties. The twelve minutes made Bigos  Hockey East’s all-time penalty leader with 415 minutes.

● recap and comprehensive box score
● Video highlights
● Boston Hockey Blog recap, “defense-first
● Post-game comments: Jack Parker, Megan, Privitera
● College Hockey News Takeaway
● USCHO recap
● HockeyEastOnline recap

Looking ahead 
2013 recruit Robbie Baillargeon scored twice and assisted on a third goal for Omaha, but the Lancers fell, 5-3, to Dubuque, which received an assist from 2013 recruits Jarrid Privitera. Baillargeon has six goals in seven games since being acquired by Omaha.

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