AMHERST, Mass. — With 7:24 to go in the third period of Friday night’s game between Massachusetts and Boston University, an ill-timed group of UMass fans started chanting at BU freshman Chris Bourque, stationed on the point during a Terrier power play.
“Daddy’s better,” they yelled, referring to Bourque’s legendary father Ray, a 22-year veteran of the NHL.
While they may have been right, Chris Bourque gave them a reason to pipe down right then, banging home his second goal of the night as the Terriers shut out the Minutemen 3-0 in front of 4,558 at the Mullins Center.
Bourque’s second goal showed a few reflections of dear old Dad, as it was a nifty slapshot from the point that beat UMass’ Gabe Winer low on the right side, and lifted the Terriers to a 3-0 advantage.
Though he didn’t score BU’s first and game-winning goal, he did have a hand in it, as it came on a tip from Brian McConnell, who redirected Bourque’s slapshot 1:16 into the game.
Sophomore John Curry made 29 stops to earn his first career shutout, just a week after being questionable for the Beanpot final — which Bourque won for the Terriers with his overtime goal.
“I thought the difference in the first two periods was that our goaltender played tremendously well,” BU coach Jack Parker said. “He made some very tough saves, and their goaltender played well, but if it wasn’t for John Curry tonight, it would have been 2-2, 3-2 UMass in that third period.”
Bourque’s first goal came shorthanded with 5:55 to go in the second period. The Minutemen found themselves overextended on the power play, and Bryan Miller intercepted a pass, sending it to McConnell near center ice. McConnell fed Bourque at the UMass blue line, and the freshman went in alone, making a nice move near Winer before backhanding the puck home to make it 2-0 BU.
For Bourque and the Terriers, there was little letdown after Monday’s thrilling Beanpot final.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” Bourque said. “Obviously Monday was unbelievable, but it’s good that we won tonight, it’s a big win for us. That keeps us rolling into these last six games. These are the most important six games of the year.”
“That game was great and all, but we told them to put it in the bank,” Parker said. “It’s always a great goal to achieve, but it’s over with. It does allow us to come in to the last six games of the season at the top of our game.”
The Minutemen have not scored in nearly two full games, with their last goal coming against New Hampshire in the first period of last Saturday’s 6-1 loss in Amherst.
“We denied quite a bit of their chances, and we had every bit as many golden chances ourselves,” UMass coach Don Cahoon said. “We’re just not squaring up to shooters, we get overzealous on the power play, and we’re giving up 2-on-1s.”