Jan. 29, 2015
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Inside BU Hockey - Episode 16
The second-ranked Boston University men's ice hockey team (15-4-4, 10-2-2 Hockey East) is set to square off against Massachusetts (8-16-1, 3-11-1 HE) on Friday night (Jan. 30). Puck drop at Agganis Arena is slated for 7:30 p.m.
The Terriers, who are 6-1-3 in their past 10 contests, swept a two-game weekend series last weekend at then-No. 12 Vermont.
On Friday, senior Evan Rodrigues, sophomore Robbie Baillargeon and fresman Brandon Fortunato recorded two-point games in a 4-2 victory. The following night, Rodrigues tied the game at 1 with 2:18 remaining in the third period before freshman Jack Eichel clinched the victory with an overtime tally.
Junior goaltender Matt O'Connor was named Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week after stopping 63 of the 66 combined shots he faced in both tilts.
In the season opener, BU dropped UMass at the Mullins Center by a score of 8-1 with Eichel recording the first four points (2g, 2a) of his collegiate career. Junior Danny O'Regan and Rodrigues enjoyed three-point nights and freshman goaltender Connor LaCouvee made 31 saves in his first career victory.
UMass is 4-3-1 in its past eight contests after going 4-13-1 in its first 17 contests this season and is coming off a three-point weekend in a home-and-home series with then-No. 14 Merrimack. On Sunday, the Minutemen posted a 4-1 home victory over the Warriors.
Sophomore forward Frank Vatrano leads the Minutemen in goals (13) and points (22). Freshman Dennis Kravhenko is tied for the team lead with 13 assists and is second on the team with 21 points. In just 10 games this season, freshman defenseman Brandon Montour has tallied 10 points (2g, 8a). In goal, freshman Henry Dill has started 18 games in net and has a .877 save percentage to go along with a 3.82 goals-against average.
The Terriers' top forward line all ranks in the top 10 nationally in points per game. Eichel is second with 1.64 while and Rodrigues and O'Regan are tied for 10th with 1.22. Eichel also leads the nation in assists per game (1.05) and in overtime goals with three. Rodrigues is currently on an eight-game point streak with 15 points (4g, 11a) during the stretch.
O'Connor is seventh in the country in save percentage at .937 and 11th in goals-against average with a 1.91.
As a team, BU is ninth in college hockey in scoring offense with an average of 3.39 goals per contest and fourth in scoring defense, allowing just 2.00 goals per game.
Since their first game in the 1919-20 campaign, the Terriers and Minutemen have played 71 times. The Terriers hold an impressive 54-11-6 (.803) record over the Minutemen, including a 12-2-2 record in meetings at Agganis Arena.
The Terriers' next game will be Monday (Feb. 2) at the TD Garden as they open the Beanpot against crosstown rival and fourth-ranked Harvard at 5 p.m.