The No. 12 Boston College Men's Hockey team opened their season at home Saturday night with an exhibition game against the University of New Brunswick. The reigning Hockey East regular season champions picked up where they left off last season, steamrolling the Varsity Reds in an 8-1 blowout.
UNB won the opening puck-drop, a small victory which marked the only point of the game in which they appeared to possess any sort of momentum against the Eagles. Less than 20 seconds into the game, BC got on the board first with a goal from Edmonton Oilers’ draft pick Graham McPhee.
Another quick goal from freshman Oliver Wahlstrom forced UNB to make a substitution between the pipes. The Quincy native showed fans why the New York Islanders drafted him with the 11th overall pick in the NHL draft earlier this year, netting two goals in the first period of his collegiate debut.
By the end of the first period, the Reds found themselves trailing 4-0, largely due to the play of BC goaltender Joseph Woll. Although the Eagles played a tenacious defense throughout the game, Woll still had to step up to make a number of saves. He managed to keep UNB off the scoreboard for the first period.
Following their domination of the first period, the Eagles substituted Woll out of the game for backup Ryan Edquist at the start of the second. Their offensive momentum carried into the second period as Aapeli Räsänen notched his first goal of the year. Assists on that goal came from Logan Hutsko and Julius Mattila. The Varsity Reds were able to briefly narrow the gap to 5-1, as Chris Clapperton scored on a UNB power play.
The Eagles, however, managed to reclaim their five-goal lead by the end of the period behind a goal from captain Christopher Brown. Brown netted his first of two goals of the season in the game.
The Eagles' opportunism was a key part of their success on the night, scoring on three of their first four power plays. As the game went on, the Reds’ frustration became increasingly visible. Their play became more and more chippy, and they often got in the faces of Eagles players after the whistle. The Eagles remained disciplined and they refrained from retaliating and giving the Reds a power play.
The Eagles continued to dominate both sides of the puck in the third period. They started out the period with third string goalie Ian Milosz between the pipes. Milosz took advantage of the opportunity for playing time and kept New Brunswick off the board.
BC continued to dominate and extended their lead to 8-1, where the score would remain through the end of the game.
The Eagles will look to take momentum from this victory on the road next weekend when they head to the midwest to face off against Wisconsin. Their next home home game will be Thursday, Oct. 25, in Conte Forum.
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