Light the Lamp #3 – King of Conte
By: Scott Geyman
Week three of Light the Lamp. Time is flying, and so are the Boston College Eagles, who are ranked second in the nation and off to a 9-1-0 start. As always, we welcome your thoughts on Boston College hockey at @WZBCSports. If have not read the first two editions of Light the Lamp, you can find them here. Here we go.
— TJ Hartnett (@T_Hartnett2) November 16, 2015
“Losing your head in a crisis is a good way to become the crisis”
In what seemed like a guaranteed victory after Alex Tuch fired a laser wrist shot high glove side to give the Eagles a 4-1 lead with just over eight minutes to play, the Michigan State Spartans had no plans of giving up. Friday night’s game took a sudden turn when the Green and White tallied three consecutive goals within 1:58, tying up the game with just minutes remaining. Whether you call it a collapse of the nation’s best goaltender in Thatcher Demko or a lack of effort by the entire team given its three goal cushion, No. 2 Boston College was on the verge of handing the game to the unranked Spartans. Demko did exactly what he needed to – maintain composure and shake it off immediately. Trusting the skaters in front of you is one thing, but relying on them to generate offense after giving up three quick goals in the third period is another. After a late interference call against Michigan State, Miles Wood deflected a shot past Hildebrand, giving the Eagles a bit of breathing room in what would be the game winning goal. Side note: Colin White’s first period backhander past Jake Hildebrand was absolutely filthy, as White was nearly even with the goal line when he unleashed the shot. White is riding a five game point streak, with 12 points (4-8-12) in that span.
When Jerry York first stepped behind the bench at the NCAA level, The Godfather was the highest-grossing film of the year. How appropriate. With 43 seasons under his belt, York can easily be considered the head of the mob that is college hockey. Already the winningest coach in NCAA history, his 993 win total is quickly approaching the 1,000 milestone. With 526 of those coming from his time in Chestnut Hill, York can reach 1,000 career wins as early as December 28, when the Boston College Eagles take on the Ohio State Buckeyes at the Florida College Hockey Classic in Estero, FL. One can only hope that the Eagles continue their early season success and win out until then.
“Go, Johnny Go!”
In 1958, Chuck Berry already knew that a little squirt named Johnny Gaudreau would one day prove the naysayers wrong and climb the rungs to the reach the best hockey league in the world. Not every professional can say that he learned to skate by chasing after Skittles on the ice. Nor can he say that he totaled 80 points (40-40-80) in his Hobey Baker Award-winning junior season at one of the nation’s top collegiate programs (yes, I’m biased). One thing is for certain, though: “Johnny [Is] Goode.” Playing in his 100th career NHL game this past Sunday, Gaudreau has amassed 83 career points since departing Boston College in April 2014 after a devastating loss against Union College in the NCAA Frozen Four. Despite his light and nimble frame (5’9”, 157 lbs), which many critics believed would limit his potential to ever see ice time in the NHL, his transition to the pros has been seamless as he was named a top-three finalist for the Calder Trophy (rookie of the year) in 2015. Next time you see Johnny take the puck coast to coast, please humor Chuck Berry for me and shout, “Go, Johnny Go!”
We Want the Wildcats
The Eagles, in their second consecutive one-game weekend, travel up to Durham, NH on Saturday to take on the Hockey East foe University of New Hampshire Wildcats. For UNH, this matchup will be their second of the weekend, as UNH takes on UMass Amherst this evening. Coming into tonight with a 3-4-2 record (1-0-2 HEA), the Wildcats are led by junior Tyler Kelleher (5-13-18 in nine games) and Andrew Poturalski (7-9-16 in nine games). Both off to phenomenal starts, Kelleher leads the nation in points per game and assists per game. Look for the Boston College defensemen to play tight coverage on both UNH scoring machines. Boston College will then have a midweek matchup against UConn in Hartford, CT on Tuesday evening before returning to Conte Forum to face R.I.T. on Saturday, November 28.
Next week’s Light the Lamp will undoubtedly be more entertaining than going out shopping for Black Friday deals, so stay tuned for the Thanksgiving edition next Friday.