An early lead for the University of Maine Black Bears (8-13-3, 2-9-1 HEA) was crushed half way through the third period as the No. 3 Boston University (BU) Terriers (16-5-2, 9-2-2 HEA) capitalized on two of their seven total power plays. Maine could not climb back, falling in the contest 4-1. BU has only lost once this season at home in the Agganis Arena.
The bulk of BU’s scoring came late in the third period, scoring three goals with the first two coming as Maine was down a man. BU took their first lead off a goal from second-year forward Bobo Carpenter. Carpenter was out for BU’s power play unit when he took a one-timer that slipped past Maine’s second-year goaltender Rob McGovern. Carpenter is BU’s fifth leading scorer with seven goals and 10 assists this season.
Four minutes later, second-year Jordan Greenway added another for the Terriers. Greenway picked up the puck in the corner and carried it over the circle for an uncontested shot which increased BU’s lead to two. BU would find their last goal a minute later off a three on two odd man rush. Fourth-year Nick Roberto raced into BU’s offensive zone off a broken Maine play. He was followed by second-year Ryan Cloonan who picked up Roberto’s drop past and fed it across the crease to third-year Nikolas Olsson who tallied the game’s final goal.
Maine’s only goal of the contest came late in the first on the power play. Fourth-year forward Blaine Byron took a wrist shot from the point which was deflected in front by third-year Nolan Vesey. Vesey is Maine’s fifth leading scorer with seven goals and eight assists. The 1-0 score remained for nearly 20 minutes of game time when BU’s first-year Clayton Keller tied the game at one. Maine’s crux was a lack of offensive chances. Maine only managed to accrue 13 shots on first-year Jake Oettinger.
Throughout the season, Maine has been regularly outshot by opponents by an average of 33 to 29. Maine’s seven penalties did not help the cause either as BU scored two times on the power play, ultimately costing them the game.
BU’s consistent offense was enough to pick up the two points and push their win streak to seven. Boston University currently rests in second place in the Hockey East, only behind Boston College.
Maine takes the loss with them back up to the Alfond Arena to finish up the series with BU. Maine’s home rink advantage is tangible as they’ve gone 6-4-0 in Orono and 0-7-3 while on the road.
Men’s hockey falls to Boston University, 3-1
The Black Bears looked to avenge Friday’s loss when the returned to the Alfond Arena on Saturday. Maine put in a tremendous effort trying to withstand the Boston University, but ultimately fell to the Terriers 3-1.
During the first 10 minutes of the opening period, each team hit a post, with one coming from Boston University Carpenter and the other from Maine first-year forward Ryan Smith.
Boston University was the first to score at 15:23, as Keller put one in shorthanded during Maine’s power play. This was Keller’s 10th goal on the season.
“Whenever you get a chance shorthanded, it’s nice to come away with a goal. That gave us the momentum we needed to win this game,” Keller said.
Second-year forward Brendan Robbins had a chance to tie it up on a breakaway at the closing seconds of the period, but his shot went wide. Maine finished the first frame with 22 shot attempts and nine on goal, while Boston University had 20 attempts and 12 on goal.
McGovern started in net for the Black Bears, who had 11 saves, while Oettinger started for the Terriers, who had nine.
Deep into the second period, Maine displayed great forechecking effort that produced a spectacular opportunity by first-year defenseman Patrick Holway, who rung his shot off the post. Only a few seconds later, the Terriers added to their lead.
Almost at the same time that Boston University scored in the first period, first-year forward Patrick Harper put one in the net during a power play at 15:32 of the second frame, assisted by second-year forward Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson and Greenway. The lead increased to two goals for the Terriers and this was Harper’s eighth goal on the season.
“We hadn’t capitalized on our power play opportunities until that point, so it’s important that we took advantage when we could, and we came out of here with a win,” Boston University Head Coach David Quinn said.
Maine finished the period with 15 shot attempts and eight on goal, while Boston University had 24 attempts and 13 on goal. McGovern made 12 saves and Oettinger made eight.
The Black Bears finally put one on the scoreboard at 6:18 of the third period, as Byron fluttered the puck past Oettinger’s left shoulder on a power play to cut the deficit in half. This was Byron’s 11th goal on the season.
“I definitely wasn’t expecting that to go in. The puck sort of hovered off my stick and somehow ended up in the back of the net,” Byron said.
At 9:23, the Terriers took the two-goal lead right back as third-year defenseman Brandon Hickey scored off a deflection, assisted by Keller. This was Hickey’s fourth goal on the season.
Another hit pipe by Maine’s Holway with under two minutes remaining didn’t give the Black Bears a chance to climb back into the game, as they fell 3-1.
Maine finished the period with 24 shot attempts and 10 on goal, while Boston University had 19 attempts and 12 on goal. McGovern made 11 saves and Oettinger made nine.
“We took too many penalties, and that doesn’t help sustain any consistency when trying to keep up with a team of their caliber,” Maine Head Coach Red Gendron said.
Maine returns to action on Friday, Jan. 27 at home at 7:30 p.m. against the University of Massachusetts. Boston University plays next on Tuesday, Jan. 24 on the road at 7 p.m. against Merrimack College.