Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Zegras' hot stick at WJCs; Looking back to the the 1966 BU-Cornell 2OT tie

Trevor Zegras continues to power Team USA’s offense in the World Junior Championship, as the U.S. blanked The Czech Republic, 7-0. A Hockey East All-Rookie selection last season, he scored twice and dished out three assists as Team USA broke open a scoreless game with three in the second periods and four in the third. Zegras nearly completed a hat trick in the final period, ringing a shot off iron on a power play.

With a 5-5-10 scoring line, the 2019 Anaheim #1 draft  pick leads the tournament in both goals and points and has found the net in all three games thus far.  Among all-time Team USA leaders in World Juniors history, Zegras ranks second in points per game (2.38), assists per-game (1.75) and total assists (14, trailing only Jordan Schroeder’s 20).

Team USA is back on the ice tomorrow night for its final preliminary round game and will seek to break Sweden’s 54-game unbeaten streak in the preliminary round.

USA Hockey recap and video highlights

IIHF box score

Looking back—BU and Cornell play double OT tie

The following report is from the “Red Hot Hockey Since 1925” Terrier Tales article found in the sidebar.  The championship game of the Boston Arena Christmas Tournament--54 years ago today--matched two undefeated teams—#1-ranked BU against #2 Cornell (with Ken Dryden in goal)—in a thriller still talked about in college hockey circles.

Dec. 30, 1966— Boston Arena—BU played two three-game tournaments in December 1966. A week after sweeping Princeton, Minnesota and Clarkson at the Holiday Festival at Madison Square Garden, the Terriers skated on their home ice, Boston Arena, in the Arena Christmas Tournament. They beat Harvard and Northeastern to improve to a 12-0 record and a #1 ranking. Meanwhile, Cornell dispatched the same two teams and was also undefeated at 11-0 and ranked #2, setting up what is considered one of the greatest college hockey games ever played.

Both squads were far from fresh as they were about to play for the third time in as many days before a capacity crowd of 5,450. The officials for the game were Giles Threadgold and Bill Cleary, later coach and athletic director at Harvard.

According to the Ithaca Journal, “Cornell had a wide edge in territorial play in a penalty-marred first period, but the Terriers capitalized on their opportunities and thwarted the Big Red's power plays.”

All three first-period goals came on power plays. Cornell drew first blood just 2:13 into the game. With two Terriers in the penalty box, Harry Orr took a pass from Mike Doran and beat goalie Wayne Ryan.

BU senior Jim Quinn scored the equalizer four minutes later, converting a feed from Fred Bassi. Then, with half a minute left in the period and BU up two men, a Brian Gilmour slapper whizzed past Cornell goalie Ken Dryden for a 2-1 Terrier lead.

Cornell regained the lead early in the second on a pair of goals by Bob Ferguson and Skip Stanowski. Ryan got a glove both shots but couldn’t keep them out of the net. Play raged up and down the ice throughout the period with 33 shots taken, but no further goals.

The pattern continued well into the third period with Dryden keeping BU’s high-scoring ”Pinball Line” of Herb Wakabayashi, Mickey Gray and Serge Boily off the scoresheet. Finally, in the latter part of the period, BU got the tying goal from an unlikely source, sophomore defenseman Darrell Abbott.

“I think there were about 3 or 4 minutes left in the third period and we were losing 3-2 when either Pete McLachlan or Brian Gilmour—our two veteran, all-star defensemen—got a penalty, and the other, shortly before that penalty, had been injured,” Abbott recalls. “Coach Kelley had no choice but to put the two rookies—Billy Hinch and me--out together. It was the first time Billy and I had played together as a pair so I'm sure Coach was more than a little concerned.

“Cornell dumped the puck into our end in the process of making a slow line change. Billy set up in front, while I picked up the puck behind our net, fully expecting to look up and ice it, seeing as how we were a man short.

“But when I looked up there was only one Cornell player standing at center ice and the others were just coming over the boards. With no pressure I began to skate up ice only to realize that I could beat this guy. At this point everything happened so fast. There I was, going in on a partial breakaway and, contrary to all logic, I roofed a backhander into the net over Dryden’s shoulder on the short side to tie the game.”

The game went to a 10-minute overtime and, the Ithaca Journal reported, “Cornell had the edge in the first three minutes of the first overtime with Ryan making a sensational save on Doran from in close, but BU outskated the Big Red during the last seven minutes. Dryden had brilliant saves on Boily and Bill Hinch late in the period.”

The two coaches agreed to play one more overtime period, but neither of the weary teams mounted much of an attack in the second overtime and the teams were declared tournament co-champions. Goalies Ryan (32 saves) and Dryden (40 saves) shared the MVP award.

Abbott added that “It was the first game that my Father had attended at BU so it was even more special for me. He was sitting in the first-row balcony, right above our bench. Of course, having seen the success that Ken had subsequent to his days at Cornell, I feel I was very fortunate to have scored at all, but it is amazing how many people remember that goal even to this day. I was especially honored by the fact that Ken still remembered me years later, even after all the Stanley Cups and the Russian experiences. His comment to me was ‘I always remember the big ones’.”

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Back on the ice; 70-71 flashback--BAC title and remembering Ric Jordan


World Junior Championships

Team USA is back on the ice this afternoon against The Czech Republic. Check back later for an update. Game schedule.

1970-71 flashback: 12-29-70 BU 7 Notre Dame 3

In its final game of 1970, #1 ranked BU rode its special-team skills to defeat Notre Dame, 7-3, in the Boston Arena Christmas Tournament championship game. Terriers scored four times with a man-advantage and once shorthanded to improve to 8-0-1.

Toot Cahoon got BU off to a fast start, scoring at 1:27. Bob Brown scored the first power play goal on a 15-foot wrister and just over a minute later, his defensive partner, Ric Jordan, added another on a 35-foot blast. Steve Dolloff  (photo below) extended the lead to 4-0 late in the first.

In the second period, Wayne Gowing’s shorthanded made it 5-0 before the Irish finally got on the board. Notre Dame narrowed the lead to 5-2 early in the third, but John Danby connected on a pair of power-play goals 82 seconds apart, sealing the tournament title for BU.

Four Terriers were named to the all-tournament team: Jordan, Brown, Steve Stirling and Tim Regan. Jordan, with a goal and three assists in the championship game was named tournament. MVP. Jordan and Brown, who manned the points on BU’s power play were key factors in its 40% success that season. The two combined for 110 points (Brown 60, Jordan 50).

Recalling his blueline partner, who succumbed to cancer in 2001, Brown said:

“My memories of playing with Ric are favourable as we both enjoyed great years at BU, obviously fueled by winning back-to-back Nationals as one would expect. I always knew Ric had my back when we played and that afforded me opportunities to take chances and similarly in return. While no doubt we were competitive individually, the bottom line for the team and the results were always prevalent in our minds. Coach Kelley no doubt brought out the best in us and the rest of the team.”

The 6’3”, 200 lb., defenseman, who along with Bob Gryp were the team’s most physical players, produced 90 points (25G,65A) during two varsity seasons. His final two goals came in the 1972 NCAA championship game, a 4-0 shutout of Cornell.

Jordan, along with Brown and Ron Anderson, chose to forego his senior season and turn pro (after completing his degree), joining Coach Jack Kelley and Danby with the new WHA’s New England Whalers. The trio won a third consecutive championship when the Whalers claimed the first AVCO Cup title. Jordan played two seasons with New England and two with Quebec. After a brief stint with the Calgary Cowboys and a season in Austria, he retired and moved to South Florida. Jordan lost his battle with cancer in 2001. 

Jordan career stats

Looking back

Patrick Harper has been recalled by Nashville from the team’s ECHL affiliate, the Florida Everblades. In five games, the 2016 fifth-round draft pick leads the league in points (9) and goals (5), leading the Everblades to a 5-0 record. Harper signed a two-year, entry-level contract with the Predators last March.

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