ST. LOUIS — As an assistant captain and the only upperclassman on defense, David Warsofsky knows he’s going to have to be a leader for No. 14 Boston University this season. Through two games, he’s been that and more.
The potential Hobey Baker candidate registered two goals and three assists this weekend to lead BU to its second Ice Breaker championship in the last three seasons.
“He’s got two goals and three assists in his first two games,” said BU coach Jack Parker. “That just about says it all, doesn’t it? And he’s a defenseman, by the way.”
Warsofsky opened the season with a goal and two assists in the Terriers’ 4-3 win over No. 13 Wisconsin on Friday night. The junior blueliner assisted on BU’s first goal when he set up Charlie Coyle for a shot that led to a rebound for Joe Pereira to bury.
Three minutes later, he potted one of his own when he walked across the blue line and found twine with a wrist shot through traffic. Warsofsky capped off his scoring with a laser cross-ice pass that Coyle deposited into an empty net.
The Marshfield, Mass., native picked up where he left off Sunday as BU downed No. 17 Notre Dame 5-4 in the title bout. He once again assisted on the Terriers’ first goal when he led a rush up ice and fired a shot on net that led to a juicy rebound for freshman Sahir Gill, who had a goal and four assists in his first weekend of collegiate hockey.
Warsofsky, who had his rights traded from the St. Louis Blues to his hometown Boston Bruins this summer, then gave BU a 2-1 lead late in the first when he jumped up on the rush again and found himself on a 2-on-1 with Gill. The rookie slid the puck over to Warsofsky, who proceeded to roof it over Fighting Irish goalie Steven Summerhays’ right shoulder.
“We think he’s one of the premier defensemen in college hockey,” Parker said. “He’s a great offensive defenseman. He defends very well. He’s a good penalty killer. He’s a good power play guy. … We expect him to have a big year.”
After being paired with a veteran, stay-at-home defenseman in Eric Gryba each of the last two seasons, Warsofsky now finds himself serving as the elder statesman on a pairing with freshman Adam Clendening. Because Clendening is also offensive-minded, there was reason to think Warsofsky would have to hang back more and not do as much on the rush. That hasn’t been the case, though.
“We’re both offensive, but I think we’re offensive in different ways,” Warsofsky said. “He’s offensive at the blue line, but not so much in the rush. So I think that kind of benefits me a little bit. Just like when I played with Gryba last year, he kind of stayed back and let me go up whenever I wanted. We’ve been working well together so far, and hopefully we can keep that up when we get back home.”
For Warsofsky and the Terriers, the team’s hot start is a promising sign after a 2-6-0 slump out of the gate last year. It could also be a good omen — when BU opened the season with an Ice Breaker title two years ago, it went on to win the National Championship.