October 10, 2008 was truly a banner event in Boston College history! The Boston College Eagles faced off against the Wisconsin Badgers at “Banner Night at The Heights.” BC defeated Wisconsin 5-4 in an exciting game that went down to the wire.
Despite the Red Sox in the ALCS, the game was sold out, and the atmosphere was one of the best in quite awhile at The Heights. A new lighting system was put in for this game and was done very well by Eagle OPS. Most likely, it was only done for this special occasion.
Notables for the on ice ceremony included last years Hobey Baker finalist and Frozen Four MVP Nathan Gerbe, assistant captain Matt Greene, members of the 1949 National Championship team, and 2001 champions Scott Clemensen and Bobby Allen, just to name a few.
Before the game, I had a chance to talk to Gerbe, who came down from Portland of the American Hockey League, and got his thoughts of the event.
“It feels good to be back,” Gerbe emphasized. “We are facing a good opponent in Wisconsin so hopefully we come out with a lot of energy.”
Gerbe was excited to raise the banner on the ice, along with Greene.
“I’m going to help raise the banner,” said Gerbe about his involvement in the pregame ceremony. “It’s going to be fun to get back on the ice and get the old college going so it’s going to be a lot of fun.”
Ken Hodge, a former Eagle great and current color commentator for the radio broadcasts also had some thoughts.
“It’s a great honor based on last year’s hockey club,” Hodge noted. “It’s nice to put last year in perspective, raising the banner [and moving on] to this season.”
Also before the game I got to go into the crowd and get some thoughts from some BC Superfans on what they thought would make the event a special occasion. One fan asked to have her last name unidentified.
Rob Hoscheit (BC Student)
Rob got here around 6:00, but he was still able to get a great seat, right behind Wisconsin goaltender Shane Connelly (for two periods). Hoscheit shared his thoughts on the night.
“What makes this night special is celebrating the success of last season, and playing a great team in Wisconsin,” Hoscheit said.
Jackie (Another BC Student)
Jackie got here at 5:30 right when the door opened, and got a front row seat right behind Connelly (again for two periods) and also gave some insight on the event.
“Wisconsin is a good team and it is always going to be a good game [when you play them]. It’s exciting for them because it’s their first game back as champions.”
Even a Wisconsin fan chimed in on the game.
Eric (last name unidentified) originally from Wisconsin:
“I’m looking forward to the game, BC is a pretty good team so it’s exciting to play them.”
Before the game was even played, Eric thought Wisconsin would “Not be able to score much.” He didn’t expect Wisconsin to score four goals tonight, and be in a shootout with the Eagles.
After the game both head coach Jerry York and senior captain Brock Bradford commented on the pre-game ceremonies.
“Everyone on the whole BC staff did a great job with the festivities,” Bradford mentioned. “To see former players come here for the ceremony and raise the banner and show so much pride the former Eagles have in the program was special.
“It was special in a way to close out last year and start a new season. But all-in-all it was a fun night.”
Said York, “I thought it was done really well, fairly short. The smiles on Bobby Allen’s face and Scott Clemensen’s face, and Billy Cass, it was pretty nice to have them all around us.”
And with that the 2007-08 season is in the books and the 2008-09 season has begun at The Heights!