The opening frame was a goalie duel for the majority. BC apparently scored, but the net was dislodged from its moorings, so the officials waived the goal off. The teams played on and appeared headed to the intermission scoreless. Until the final minute, that is. Lincoln Griffin attempted a wraparound that BC goalie Joseph Woll stopped but did not cover. Austin Plevy saw a loose puck and punched home the first goal of the night. The senior transfer from UMass scored his third goal of the year with his parents in the building.
Northeastern continued the attack in the second, winning the shot battle 12-8. Woll, again, mostly held firm but yielded one tally. Patrick Schule received a pass from Matt Thompson at the left dot. The senior from Queens, NY, whipped a wrister through Woll for a 2-0 lead and his ninth goal of the year, matching his entire scoring output from the first three seasons of his Northeastern career.
The attack continued into the third period, as Lincoln Griffin caught Joe Woll out of position and saucered a backhander top left corner for a 3-0 Husky lead only 1:25 into the frame. Boston College has plenty of pride on their side and battled back. As the Northeastern band played their traditional “Stacy’s Mom”, Oliver Wahlstrom corralled the puck behind the net and fed David Cotton for his Hockey East-leading 16th goal of the season only three minutes after Griffin’s goal. After the halfway point, Cotton played the assisting role, setting up JD Dudek for his fifth goal of the season and inspiring doubt in the previously boisterous and confident Northeastern student section.
Primeau met the rising Eagles and stopped the remaining BC attempts, and his skaters did the rest. The veteran second line of Matt Filipe and Lincoln Griffin drove the puck out of danger into the BC end and Zach Solow potted the empty netter with 5.3 seconds left to end the scoring and send Northeastern’s fans into a frenzy. The score read 4-2 as Northeastern stormed the TD Garden ice for their second consecutive Beanpot title, the second time the Huskies have done so, and sixth tournament trophy overall.
Boston College falls to 10-14-3 with the heartbreaking loss. Jerry York, who signed an extension through the 2021-2022 season before the game, was happy with his team, if not the result.
“Winning the Beanpot is something all four schools stress,” York said. “It’s really important to all of us. I thought our team really battled back down 3-0 in the third. I thought we played pretty well in the first and second periods. But in that third period, the last 17-18 minutes, I thought we played extremely well. Congratulations to Northeastern.”
This is the 16th time the Eagles have finished as the runner-up in the Beanpot and first since falling to Boston University in overtime in 2007. Joseph Woll made 31 saves on 34 shots faced.
BC returns to Hockey East play this weekend with a home-and-home against the Massachusetts Minutemen. Puck drop between Hockey East’s 1st and 3rd placed teams is at 7 pm on Friday night at the Mullins Center and at 8 pm on Saturday night at Conte Forum.
Cayden Primeau recorded 33 saves on 35 shots faced. The sophomore from Voorhees, NJ, claimed his 2nd straight Eberley Award with a .952 save percentage. He also won the Beanpot MVP, becoming the first goalie to win both since Sean Maguire did so for BU in 2016.
“I wish I could play in this tournament every year until the day I die”, expressed an elated Captain Eric Williams. “Around campus, everyone realizes how big it is. They ask you if you’re gonna win the Beanpot. And it’s all people can talk about. It’s something we mark on our calendars every year.”
“For me, it’s all about Northeastern University”, explained Jim Madigan. “For us, if we can do what we can with Men’s Ice Hockey to keep Northeastern front and center, and keep the trajectory moving forward, that’s what I’m happiest about.”
Northeastern improves to 17-9-1 with the win. The Huskies return home for two games against the Vermont Catamounts on Friday and Saturday. Puck drops at 7 pm both nights at Matthews Arena for the now decorated and more focused Northeastern squad.