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The Terriers put down a valiant effort from the River Hawks to claim their seventh Hockey East Tournament Title, its first since 2006. The seven titles are second only to BC’s eight in the league’s 25-year history. BU will enter next week’s NCAA Tournament as the overall #1, however, this game’s outcome would not have affected the seed.
UMass-Lowell will miss out on the tournament, but BU will be joined by Northeastern, which will be a two seed, UNH and Vermont, which will each be threes. Boston College, meanwhile, will miss out on the chance to defend their National Championship.
The game had a lot of penalties, five-on-threes, four-on-fours, and even a four-on-three, yet no power play goals (UML 0-7, BU 0-4). Brandon Yip, who essentially had last night off with the early departure due to the major penalty early in the semifinal game, scored the game’s only goal, with 1:22 remaining in the first period after collecting a rebound off the post.
If it had not been for the post, BU would have scored about five or six goals. The Terriers won on their size and strength; they really showcased their power in this game. BU goaltender Kieran Millan, the tournament’s MVP, saved all 32 shots he faced while UMass-Lowell goalie Nevin Hamilton allowed only the single goal on 32 shots as well.
With the bracket unveiled tomorrow, it seems pretty clear who the 16 teams will be. Ohio State will sneak in with the final at-large bid and were the biggest Terrier fans tonight. They will be BU’s likely first round opponent in an interesting twist of fate.
Notre Dame will be the second overall seed and Denver and Michigan will take the final #1s. Yale, Northeastern, Minnesota-Duluth, and perhaps North Dakota should be two seeds. Vermont, Cornell, UNH, and Princeton will be the third seeds and Miami, Ohio State, Air Force, and Bemidji State will earn fourth seeds. Hockey East and the CCHA will each have four bids, ECAC and WCHA will have three and the “mid-major” AHA and CHA will each get only their autobids.
As much as it pains an Eagle to say this, Congratulations to the Terriers. And to BU and the other Hockey East schools in the NCAAs, represent the conference with pride, get some wins, and keep the National Title in the conference!