I knew coming into last night’s bout at TD Garden between the Eagles and Huskies that Northeastern’s freshman sensation Kevin Roy would be the player to watch in the Beanpot’s 61st Championship game. His team-leading thirty points and recent hat-trick against BU had me worried for last night’s game.
Roy almost brought my nightmare to life.
The recipient of this year’s Beanpot MVP award as the most impactful and exciting player of the tournament, Roy came close to once again carrying that Northeastern team on his back, but BC’s four goals in the second period and outstanding transition game proved too much for Northeastern and their netminder Chris Rawlings.
The victory gave BC’s graduating class of Parker Milner, Pat Mullane, Pat Wey, Patch Alber, Steven Whitney and Brooks Dyroff their eighth consecutive victory in the Beanpot tournament and fourth straight Beanpot championship. While Roy may have nabbed the MVP, Milner was awarded the Eberly Award for being the statistically best goalie in the tournament.
Last year’s MVP, Johnny Hockey, recorded two goals and an assist. His second strike of the night came in the third period when defenseman Mike Matheson sauntered into the Northeastern zone, broke a few ankles with a couple great moves, and fed it across the slot to a streaking Gaudreau. The play was a thing of perfection, and the ensuing “Johnny B. Goode” rendition from the band was icing on the cake for BC’s fifth goal, essentially putting the game out of reach with four minutes left to play.
After a scintillating, and I mean scintillating, Star-Spangled Banner performance by BC’s very own Caroline Portu, BC and the Huskies skated to a scoreless first frame. And then the second period happened. Poor Chris Rawlings, I almost felt sorry for the guy. Almost.
Bill Arnold and Gaudreau scored less than two minutes apart midway into the second and then Whitney and Patrick Brown scored with even less time between their goals, eight minutes later. Rawlings looked sloppy and out of place, letting a few dribblers sneak by him and not showing a good sense of awareness in net.
BC’s student section, in the nosebleeds of TD Garden, was the loudest it has been since BU came to Conte before Christmas break. Hopefully, this Championship will ignite the fan base again and will help make Kelley Rink once again be the hardest arena to play in for opposing teams.
As of Sunday, BC was ranked fourth behind Quinnipiac, Minnesota and Miami. The return of an impeccable home-ice advantage could help BC climb back up the NCAA rankings.