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College Hockey:
No. 3 BU ties No. 7 Maine

Coyle’s late goal is the equalizer

— It may have been early November, but this matchup between two talented teams had the feel of a playoff game in March.

A crowd of 6,150 at Agganis Arena relished a see-saw 2-2 tie between seventh ranked Maine and No. 3 Boston University, which now finds itself alone with Yale as the only two unbeaten teams in the nation.

After squandering a 1-0 lead and falling behind 2-1, the Terriers tied it on an extra-attacker goal by freshman Charlie Coyle with 1:21 remaining in regulation.

Maine defenseman Jeff Dimmen had the only multiple-point game, notching a goal and an assist.  Maine goalie Dan Sullivan and BU netminder Kieran Millan both had strong nights, with Sullivan making 28 saves while Millan made 34.

“If you were an innocent bystander, it was a great college hockey game to watch,” BU head coach Jack Parker said.  “It was really exciting; there were lots of great plays.  There were a lot of good players showing what they could do and great goaltending by both kids.”

 No. 3 BU ties No. 7 Maine

While letting the win slip away was disappointing for Maine, getting a point on the road was still satisfying—especially given that top power-point defenseman Will O’Neil was lost to a lower body injury on the second shift of the game.  Maine was already without forward Tanner House, and forward Joey Diamond missed much of the later portion of the game with an injury as well.

“We were proud of how the guys competed,” Black Bears head coach Tim Whitehead said. ” To come back down 1-0 was great.  Tough bounce on the second [BU goal]—knocked off of a couple of shin pads—so we had to shake that off, and we did.  We had a couple of good chances in OT.  Overall, considering House and losing O’Neill on the second shift and losing Diamond in the third with an injury, we were pleased.”

Maine went on a two-man advantage less than two minutes into the game, but the Terriers’ penalty kills was resolute all night.  In fact, BU has now killed off 22 straight penalties and 36 of the last 37.  Maine ended up with an 8-4 shot advantage in the first, but that was deceptive: BU had a flurry of chances around the 14-minute mark, but many shots missed the net.

The Terriers also missed out on a highlight-reel goal late in the period when David Warsofsky and Coyle set up Chris Connolly on the doorstep, only to have Sullivan make the save.

The Black Bears dominated early in the second, outshooting BU 10-1 before Parker used his timeout at 8:44.  “Even though we only got four shots in the first period, I thought were playing real well,” Parker said.  “In the first 12 minutes of the second period, I thought Maine was taking it to us and we were standing around watching.  So it was ‘Hey guys, let’s pick it up here instead of waiting around for something bad to happen.’”

Maine nearly scored right after the timeout, when Brian Flynn set up Robby Dee for a shot that caught the underside of the crossbar.  After that, though, BU picked it up.  On a power play at 15:51, they took the lead.  Adam Clendening fed it to Alex Chiasson in the slot, and Chiasson’s decision to forego the shot to pass to Connolly in the left-wing circle surprised everybody.

“Alex created that whole play,” Connolly said.  “I don’t know how he saw me with his back turned, but he did.  The goalie thought he was going to shoot, so I had a wide open net.   That made my job easy.”

BU almost made it 2-0 on a five-on-three early in the third.  In fact, co-captain Joe Pereira seemed adamant that the puck was in the net at one point, but it was ruled no goal after a video review.  There was some sense that a Maine defender had covered a puck with his glove and that there should’ve been a penalty shot as a result.  However, the review process can only be used to determine if a goal was scored, and that could not be confirmed.

Less than a minute later, Maine tied it up.  Dimmen shot from the point, and Millan yielded a rare rebound.  Gustav Nyquist pounced on it and buried it.  Then Maine took the lead on Dimmen’s goal at 6:12.  “It just squirted out there in the slot,” Dimmen said.  “There was some pretty good traffic in the slot.  I tried to get it off quick, and the puck had some eyes.  It was nice.”

Maine almost clinched it at 12:50 when Millan was stricken with wanderlust.  While he seemed in no hurry to get back in the net, Flynn couldn’t get it by a defender in the crease.

BU tied it at 18:39, shortly after Millan was pulled for the extra attacker.  Warsofsky threw the puck into the slot for the right point.  It appeared to carom off a Maine defender and a BU player before Joe Pereira nudged it to Coyle, who backhanded it in.

The Terriers looked spent in the overtime but hung on for the tie.  “I was really impressed with Maine’s defensive corps,” Parker said.  “They did a really good job in front of the net, and they were really good with the puck.  Everybody talks about how good Maine is offensively, but I think their defense as a group is really underrated.”

Parker eschewed the notion that BU should be the number-one team in the nation, but losses by Miami and Minnesota-Duluth could make that happen on Monday afternoon.  The Terriers’ eight-game unbeaten streak to start the season is now second only to the 1977-78 national championship team in program history.  BU (6-0-2 overall, 4-0-2 in Hockey East) faces Merrimack in a home-and-home series next weekend, while Maine (4-1-3, 2-0-1) hosts Northeastern for a pair.

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  • http://flavors.me/mgdefilippis Michael DeFilippis

    This game was one of the best byfar since I’ve been at BU. A win would have been nice, but can’t ask for much more.

  • D Drapeau

    This early, with some depth – and a new goalie, Maine will be in it to win it. BU should be #1 this week or Yale, haha) … fun early season game. Thanks, guys!!

    • UMaineBLACKBEARS

      HAHA how do you get BU being #1 after one game this weekend that was a tie. You don’t go the a #3 spot where you don’t really belong anyway until you get wins against top quality teams to the #1 spot after a one game set against the #7 team that beat you in every category on the scorers sheet including shots on goal, time of possession, and face-offs especially when you don’t get a win and were lucky to tie it after a bad bounce off a skate. No way does BU jump from #3 to #1 with a tie this weekend when they were outplayed. I don’t see it happening.

      • 4Hockeyeast

        BU won in the category of penalty kills. Killing 6 penalties and a couple of 5 on 3′s in Maine’s favor is impressive. No doubt Maine looked great last night but I doubt they think they completely outplayed BU. The delay of game penalty against Maine happened because they felt so much BU offensive pressure that their player had to lie down on the puck just to get a whistle.

        With the way things are unfolding Hockey East is set to dominate college hockey. The only team in Hockey East that is a little disappointing is BC. If they can shake off their losses and crack down there’s no reason why BC,BU, Maine, and New Hampshire can’t dominate the post season.

        • UMaineBLACKBEARS

          That would be great Hockey East if that happened

        • UMaineBLACKBEARS

          That would be great FOR Hockey East if that happened, i meant to say.

        • 18 seconds before sunrise

          The only category that really matters is “shots IN the net.”

          Also, who would you pick over BU as #1?

          BU deserves to be the front-runner for the #1 spot this week. Here is why…they and Yale are the only two undefeated teams in Div 1. BU is 6-0-2, Yale 4-0-0. Miami (formerly #1…) lost to and tied Ferris State (an unranked team). Minnesota-Duluth split with #9 North Dakota. Perhaps Duluth has the best shot at #1 other than BU. BC lost to UNH. Yale won twice but was ranked lower than BU heading into the weekend AND they have only played 4 games to BU’s 8.

          PS) I live in Orono, Maine and I’m a die-hard Black Bear fan. But I’m also a bit weary of reading groundless anti-BU rants by fellow Maine fans.

          • 18 seconds before sunrise

            Sorry 4Hockeyeast . I meant this to be In Reply to UMaineBLACKBEARS’s “HAHA” post.

            I do agree with your 1st paragraph, but I seriously doubt that Hockey East is set to “dominate” college hockey. At this early point in the season, Hockey East is NOT dominating the other leagues. Just got to http://www.hockeyeastonline.com/men/against.php and take a look at the Total column (.448 winning percentage against all other leagues).

            Lastly, it’s too early to tell which teams will be at the top of the heap come tournament time. I’m sure that a few Hockey East teams will be in the mix.

      • Sidelinereporter

        Looks like you can eat your words now sir…
        http://www.uscho.com/rankings/

  • HE Fan

    Great college hockey game. I’m a Maine fan and was able to attend this game. Though, for obvious reasons, I’m not a BU fan, this was a good game. Would have liked to see Maine win of course, but, this was a rare occassion where you don’t really want to see either team, particularly either goaltender, take a lose. As a fan of college hockey, this was a great game between two really good programs. Great goaltending on both sides.

  • Terriers Rule

    Great game. Loudest I’ve heard Agganis since 2008-09. First goal by Maine was kind of a gift after a BS penalty call against Charlie Coyle when BU was on the power play.

    • Anonymous

      BU’s game tying goal was a “gift” on a deflection off from a Maine skate.

      • DURRR

        Well- that’s not what happened.

    • UMaineBLACKBEARS

      BS Penalty call??? I was at the game and your going to say that the Charlie Coyle penalty in the 3rd period was BS when he CLEARLY tripped the Maine player away from the puck for no reason. That goal wasn’t a gift it was a result of good defense and taking advantage of a BU mistake. Jeff Dimmen is one of the top defenseman in the country and he earned that goal. If I saw any call last night that was BS or Cheap it was a delay of game penalty on Maine towards the end of the game when the puck was against the boards and two BU players knocked down a Maine player to the ice on top of the puck and couldn’t get up right off because he had two BU players holding him down and jamming at him with sticks trying to free up the puck. THAT was a BS call, although it didn’t matter because it didn’t amount to anything. Overall I think that the game was well officiated, except for that one call at the end of the game but oh well. I just know that Maine out played, out hustled, and out worked BU last night and if you don’t think so look at the game stats. But a lucky bounce for BU off a Maine players skate near the Maine net and thats all it takes for Maine to end up with a tie instead of a well deserved win. But a tie doesn’t hurt either team in the polls so on to next weekend. On the bright side it was one hell of a hockey game and if you appreciate the game of hockey then you would agree that last nights game for an early season match up was exciting with a playoff atmosphere that didn’t disappoint except for the fact Maine didn’t get the win.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_PY453UPQ7QHDPOGT6OE24TLZTU William

        Blatantly bitter banter, Black Bear.

  • scrvet

    BU is not the only undefeated team in the nation. Yale is 4-0.

    • Anonymous

      yale plays in a mnor league…that’s why they are 4-0

  • BU Sux

    Great game, although I have to say how classless the BU fans are, particulalry the student body sections with all their chants that cannot be heard on tv. Direct reflection on Jack Parker in my opinion. Classless.

    • Neb

      Yeah, you’re right. The Maine fans are so classy. Remember when they were chanting “Jack Parker Must Die” — no profanity or anything. Just a sportsman like thought for the other team wishing death on another coach. Yeah, they’re classy up there at Alfond….

      • hkyfan

        may i ask when this was? i’ve been attending hockey games at the alfond for quite some time now and can’t remember an instance where the students have “wished death upon another coach”

      • UMaineBLACKBEARS

        Yeah same here, I am from Maine and attend every single home game for a long time now and I have NEVER heard that either. Unless you heard one ignorant drunk fan say something like that and are making it out to seem like it was the whole student body which would never say something like that. Because they have more class then that and The Athletic department would never allow something like that to be chanted.

        • Chris

          Some students hung Jack Parker in effigy when I was at school at Maine, 22 years ago. Shawn Walsh wrote a column in the Daily Maine Campus (student paper) the next Monday, telling the students to shape up and show more class. As far as I know, everyone has listened to Coach Walsh.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_2NJDAIOWD4C3RE673RB7WE4NEI Scott

        Things like this might happen other places, but not at Maine. We lost our beloved coach Shawn Walsh a couple of years ago to Cancer. To that point – there is NO WAY that Maine fans would EVER do this. It is not even fathomable. Here is some advice “Neb”…if you can’t defend your teams performance on the ice or validate your points in a forum such as this – sit on the bench- or face the penalty box justice you are receiving right now. What a joke!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_2NJDAIOWD4C3RE673RB7WE4NEI Scott

    Just wondering – how is it that BU is ranked so high in the polls? Sure – they are 6-0-2, but lets look deeper. 4 of their wins are against Providence ((3-4-2), UMass (0-5-2) and Lowell (2-6-2). That means 4 of your 6 wins are against sub .500 teams with a combined 5-15-6 record. THIS makes you the #3 team in the country? Face it – if Parker didn’t have to go through all of the crap he did (and we are all glad he is okay), BU wouldn’t be considered even top 5. However, if nothing else, the Boston Press is great about sympathy stories. Can’t wait to see how BU does against BC or some REAL QUALITY team – away from Agannis.

  • BU’s a joke

    BU Should not be the number one team in the nation. I have seen Duluth and Miami play and are way better teams than BU is, undefeated or not. BU is not that good and haven’t beat anybody good yet this season. And by the way, BU was playing Maine last night, so why the hell do the BU student sections chant BC sucks when it has nothing to last nights game. They need some new chants, they are just plain lame.

    • 4Hockeyeast

      Because according to the last three years championships, no other teams matter

    • scrvet

      BU beat Notre Dame and Wisconsin (on neutral ice) at the start of the season. Both teams are in the top 25.

      • BU’s a joke

        Beat a team in the top ten and you can talk. Both of those teams have been disapointments.

        • 4Hockeyeast

          Miami has only played 1 top 10 team, New Hampshire. Not only that but it’s not like they swept New Hampshire either. They are 1-1 against top 10 teams. The best part is that the toughest teams you play all year are from the hockey east (Maine and New Hampshire). Mind you every hockey east team plays each other at least 3 times in league play.
          Miami also lost to Ferris State and tied both Ferris State and Lake Superior. #1 teams do not perform that poorly against that caliber of opponent.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_2NJDAIOWD4C3RE673RB7WE4NEI Scott

        Defend your ice at home by taking 2 points – split on the road and take 1. BU didn’t defend – Maine gets the “win” here. Basic hockey!

      • D Drapeau

        Thought this was obvious – and didn’t Notre Dame beat BC? I am so pleased that Maine fans are fired up (and Hockey East fans in general) – the polls will change every week, and fortunately there is a tourament to decide all … BU rise to #1 has helped UMAINE rise as well – I’m routing for the Fighting Sioux too – now that we swept them … enjoy the season – we are blessed to see all the future NHLers every week.

  • UMaineBLACKBEARS

    Is it just me, or does BU not really have any depth? Ya some of those freshman with grow into some great players in the next few years but right now this team looks like it has NO REAL depth and they are relying too heavily on their top 2 lines to carry this team. Thats great and all and might work for you right now while you are beating teams with a sub .500 win percentage but see how that will work long term against top nationally ranked opponents on a night in and night out basis plus its a long season and if Jack Parker is going to play his lines like I witnessed last night all season long then good luck with injuries and trying to keep players fresh in the second half off the season when you need them to be in top form the most coming down the stretch. Great game last night, I traveled from Bangor, ME to attend and it didn’t disappoint other then the fact Maine didn’t come out with a well deserved win. But its early in the season and a tie doesn’t hurt either team right now. Especially Maine since they out played, out hustled, out worked BU and have the game stats prove it. But It was almost like it was a playoff game last night was VERY exciting to be at. Although Agganis is an amazing facility (besides the fact they need more exits for after a game because it seemed like everyone funnels into one place and then it just jams up) and I really mean that, the place is NICE. It still doesn’t even come close to the atmosphere you get at the Alfond Arena in Orono, ME during a game, After being to both the Alfond definitely offers a better atmosphere. I was actually truly disappointed with BU after listening to what few chants the BU student section had to offer, They used nothing original, profanity quite often, and kept saying BC sucks while playing Maine (which makes no sense). If you guys need a lesson on how a student body should act at a college hockey game then make the trip up to the Alfond when these teams meet again in the season and you will be embarrassed for your student body.

    • UMaineBLACKBEARS

      Great goal-tending from both teams though. Each goalie had a fantastic night in net. Millan and Sullivan were both equally impressive last night. Millan made some big saves and played really well. Sullivan was key when put in some tough spots and seems to be settling in fine as a starting goalie. When you have 2 goalies playing like that it always makes for an exciting contest

  • Guest

    BU was clearly the more talented group but, Maine clearly wanted it more.
    When BU gives full effort they are scary good and for brief stretches that showed last night. Problem is they didnt give full effort for the middle of the game – just beginning and end. BU also tried to play too perfect on offense, often going for the perfect 2 line pass to jump a breakway or that extra unncessary pass on a 2 on 1. They are young, it will take time.

    • UMaineBLACKBEARS

      That is a ridiculous statement, BU is not a more talented group then Maine, sure you have plenty of good players but your team is young and undeveloped where Maine is talented and experienced and showed that throughout the game on Saturday. But overall Maine has a more talented and well rounded squad especially on offense. BU is a great team though and i give them credit but you just can NOT say they have a more talented group when clearly you were lucky to even tie the game due to some puck luck off a Maine players skate with 1min left in the game. Maine generated more scoring opportunities and controlled time of possession the most, along with more shots on goal, and face-offs won. That didn’t happen because Maine just wanted it more it happened because Maine IS the more talented team.

  • Greg

    BU numero uno…what say the ‘no way that’s going to happen’ crowd??

    http://www.uscho.com/rankings/d-i-mens-poll/