College Hockey:
Championship Notebook

Goal or No?

About five minutes into the third, it appeared that the Irish made it a one-goal game, scoring to make it 3-2 as the puck went off the skate of Kyle Lawson and dribbled past BC goaltender John Muse.

However, the goal was disallowed, due to a supposed kicking motion. According to video replay official Greg Shepherd, “The puck was kicked in the net by the Notre Dame player’s right skate. The skate was moving toward the goal line. There were sticks in the crease, and we needed to make sure there wasn’t a deflection off the sticks or the defender’s skates after it was kicked.”

Depending on which replay one saw, it wasn’t entirely clear if Lawson used a distinct kicking motion — the catalyst in whether a goal should be allowed or not, according to Rule 6, Section 18 (a): “A goal shall be allowed if the puck has been directed into the goal by an attacking player with the skate, unless a distinct kicking motion is used.”

A puck off the skate of Notre Dame's Kyle Lawson eventually turned into a no-goal for the Irish (photo: Jim Rosvold).

A puck off the skate of Notre Dame’s Kyle Lawson eventually turned into a no-goal for the Irish (photo: Jim Rosvold).

The call ultimately didn’t mean much since the Eagles scored about 30 seconds later, but it was still a tough break for the Irish.

“To be honest, I didn’t even see the puck come across,” said Lawson. “I thought it hit my skate, it went to the review thing; I couldn’t tell you. I didn’t know what the review was going to be, but it is what it is.”

Parallels: Part One

Though the Eagles ultimately won the national championship, this year’s Notre Dame team reminded BC head coach Jerry York of another team from years past — his own.

“Notre Dame and Jeff Jackson remind me a lot of our team in ’98,” said York. “We just were starting to pick up the pieces and all of a sudden, we’re in Boston for the Frozen Four playing the University of Michigan. That kind of got us over the hump and back on the national scene and back on the national level and I think Notre Dame is right at that point now. They’ve reached the national championship game; they’re going to be one of those teams that I refer to as brand-name schools for hockey.”

Parallels: Part Two

If you didn’t notice, there were a few parallels between this year’s championship and the 2001 championship team. For instance:

2001: Brian Gionta misses out on the Hobey Baker to a player from a Michigan school (Michigan State’s Ryan Miller), then goes on to win the national championship.
2008: Nathan Gerbe misses out on the Hobey Baker to a player from a Michigan school (Michigan’s Kevin Porter), then goes on to win the national championship.

2001: BC wins the title in the Pepsi Arena (Albany, N.Y.).
2008: BC wins the title in Pepsi Center (Denver, Colo.).

2001: The Eagles have a player taken off with an injury (Ales Dolinar), who comes back on the ice at the end of the game on crutches.
2008: The Eagles have a player taken off with an injury (Carl Sneep), who comes back on the ice at the end of the game on crutches.

The Never-Ending Season

Though Saturday’s game marked the official end of Boston College’s season, the team stressed the fact that because of the championship victory, this season will never actually end.

“We talked right after regionals; one of the guys said, ‘In nine days, our season is going to be over,’ and we stressed the fact that, if you win a national title, your season never ends. You’ve got unbelievable spin-offs from it; there’s trips to the White House, there’s Fenway Park,” said York.

“But it never ends because you refer back to teams all the time. I’m the same way; at Bowling Green, we had some fabulous teams. The ’84 team, it just stands out.

“We’re always talking at BC, the ’01 team and now they’ve got that ’08 team, so it just kind of stays forever. They’re tough to get; we’ve been through a lot and they’re tough to get, these trophies.”

“That was one of the things we wanted, to have a season that never ended,” said captain Mike Brennan. “I think now we have that.”

The Frozen Four: A College Hockey Fan’s Event

A special side of the Frozen Four is spotting all the different teams represented in the building. This year, 52 of 59 Division I hockey teams were represented on the fans in the building. The seven not seen? Sacred Heart, Canisius, Holy Cross, Bentley, Western Michigan, Alabama-Huntsville and St. Lawrence.

All-Tournament Team

F Nathan Gerbe, BC
F Kevin Deeth, ND
F Ben Smith, BC
D Kyle Lawson, ND
D Mike Brennan, BC
G John Muse, BC

MOP: Gerbe

Random Facts

• BC is now 90-0-1 since October 17, 2003, when scoring four or more goals in a game.

• Attendance for the championship game was 18,632, the fourth-largest ever. Total attendance for the Frozen Four was 55,719, also fourth.

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