On “Trick or Treat Night” at Gutterson Fieldhouse in Burlington, Vt., students came dressed in costume to watch Vermont men’s hockey. Some poked fun at Boston College, such as one student dressed as the Pope, but their taunting didn’t faze the Eagles.
BC played the physical, fast-paced brand of hockey that brought it an NCAA Tournament berth and a top NCAA ranking a season ago. After losses to unranked teams Colorado College, as well as to Vermont the previous night, BC (4–3–1, 2–1–0 Hockey East) avenged its loss from the night before with a 3–2 win over the Catamounts (1–5–0, 1–1–0) on Saturday.
The first period featured lots of action from both teams despite just 17 combined shots. Until a cross-checking penalty on Drew Helleson led to a Vermont power play with five minutes left in the period, Vermont had only forced two saves from BC goaltender Eric Dop. Dop couldn’t control the third shot, however, as Simon Jellus sent in the initial attempt and Philip Lagunov cleaned up the rebound to take an early 1–0 lead.
After the Eagles’ first power play, which Vermont killed, it seemed like Saturday would be a repeat of the previous night, when Vermont held the Eagles scoreless on four power plays. But on the Eagles’ next man advantage, Helleson fired a rocket on Vermont netminder Tyler Harmon that Jack McBain redirected into the back of the net to tie it up at one apiece with under one minute left in the first period.
One minute was all Vermont needed, however, as Lagunov caught Dop out of position again, cleaning up a rebound from an initial shot from the blue line by Luca Münzenberger.
The second period was opposite to the first. Despite both teams putting more pucks on the net, only one found the net, which came on a very similar play as the Eagles’ first goal. Helleson hit a slap shot that was too hot for Harmon to handle, and McBain cleaned it up by sneaking it past the goalie’s left skate to tie it up at two.
Harmon made two outstanding saves, one on Eagles’ captain Marc McLaughlin on a great chance and another where he closed the five hole on Mike Posma on a shot that looked sure to light the lamp.
Harmon continued this form in the third period with several stops in quick succession on point-blank chances by BC, and the Eagles couldn’t put the puck past him as he sprawled across the goal line, denying another BC chance.
Despite Harmon’s efforts, Trevor Kuntar elevated a one-timer into the top corner on Harmon’s glove side. The Catamount bench contested the zone entry, but officials ruled that Colby Ambrosio and Eamon Powell, who earned assists on Kuntar’s goal, crossed the blue line legally before Powell’s pass across the slot, which led to Kuntar’s goal.
The Eagles dominated the stat lines, as they outshot Vermont 31–13. BC’s attack was constant and even throughout the game, as the Eagles put up double-digit shots in each of the three periods. The Eagles were also efficient on the power play after a rough previous night, converting on two out of their three man advantages.
Feature Image by Ikram Ali / Heights Editor