No. 2 Terriers Complete Weekend Sweep
Jan. 25, 2009
Courtesy Boston UniversityDURHAM, N.H. - Freshman goaltender Kieran Millan recorded 29 saves and classmate Chris Connolly broke a 1-1 tie late in the third to lead the second-ranked Boston University men's ice hockey team to a 3-1 victory over No. 11/12 New Hampshire on Saturday evening at the Whittemore Center. BU completes the sweep of the weekend home-and-home series and improves to 18-5-1 overall and 11-5-1 in conference play.
The win was the 799th of head coach Jack Parker's career, as the Terriers surpassed their regular-season win total of 17 from last year.
Sophomore Kevin Shattenkirk scored on a power play in the final minute of the first period and the goal held up until the third, when UNH tied the contest with 7:03 left in regulation when a pass went off the skate of Mike Sislo at the goalmouth.
Just 25 seconds after the Wildcats' goal Connolly sent home a cross-crease pass from freshman Vinny Saponari for the eventual game-winner. Senior Chris Higgins added an empty-netter to cap the scoring.
Sophomore Colby Cohen added two assists for the Terriers, who are now 11-1-1 in their last 13 games.
UNH, which held a 30-18 shot advantage and got a 15-save performance from junior Brian Foster, falls to 11-8-4 overall with a 7-6-3 league record.
The Terriers' penalty kill was outstanding once again, killing off all six of UNH's power plays on the evening. The Wildcats came up empty on all 14 of their man-advantage chances in the weekend series.
Shattenkirk got BU on the board first with 47 seconds left in the first period when he beat Foster five-hole from the foot of the left circle on assists from senior John McCarthy and Cohen.
With BU on its second power play of the night, Cohen kept the puck in the UNH zone and pushed it to the left corner, where McCarthy corralled it before finding Shattenkirk all alone near the left faceoff dot. The sophomore calmly skated towards the net and faked a pass before sending the puck to the back of the net for his fifth goal of the season.
Millan was terrific all night, coming up with timely saves and keeping the home team off the board until a fluky goal tied the contest in the third.
In transition, UNH sophomore James van Riemsdyk brought the puck up along the left side and passed to junior Mike Sislo, who was streaking down the slot. The puck appeared to go off the skate of BU junior Brian Strait, who was attempting to break up the play, before sneaking inside the right post at 12:57. The play went to video review and the goal call was upheld with Sislo getting credit for the tally.
BU wasted no time in getting the lead back, quickly gaining possession off the ensuing faceoff before putting together the game-winner. Cohen passed from the left point to Saponari, who curled around the right corner to elude a defender before backhanding a pass through the crease to Connolly, who converted with a wide-open net at 13:22.
The Terriers kept the Wildcats in check the rest of the way, despite having to kill off one more penalty. In the final two minutes, BU did an impressive job of keeping possession to keep UNH from pulling Foster and adding an extra attacker.
Foster headed to the bench with just over 30 seconds left and senior Matt Gilroy quickly intercepted a pass in the BU zone and sent a pass up the ice that was collected by sophomore Colin Wilson, who got the puck to senior Jason Lawrence. Lawrence had a good look at the empty net but instead passed off to Higgins, who tallied his 11th goal of the year with 15 seconds left to play.
BU will return to action on Friday (Jan. 30) when it travels to Merrimack for a 7 p.m. contest.