CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. — Boston College and Boston University met for the fourth time this season, the final scheduled game between the rivals. Emotions ran high in the first round of the Beanpot, as the Terriers had won the last two games, both on the Eagles’ home ice, as was this one.
This time, it was BC who finished with a 2-1 victory and the bragging rights that accompany the trip to the Beanpot Championship. In addition to the win, forward Kelli Stack set a new school record for career points with 199 after an assist and a goal last night.
The teams played evenly through most of the first period. However, with just four seconds remaining in the frame, the Eagles managed a goal. Stack took the puck around the back of the net and fed it to Mary Restuccia as she approached the goal. Restuccia then tucked the puck in the right corner of the net past goaltender Karrin Sperry’s skate.
“If you look, you’ll see four red jerseys and a goalie back there and one kid behind the net and one coming down broadway,” said BU coach Brian Durocher. “You got to give us some credit for a mental error in that we hustled to get back there, so we did the physical part, but you can’t just check out mentally because the clock is winding down.”
The second period passed with only three shots from BC compared to 10 by BU. Neither team managed a goal however, and the period ended with BC still up by one.
Five minutes into the second period, Stack scored the Eagles’ second goal of the night. Restuccia sent the puck to Stack from the red line to Stack in front of the net. As Sperry slid to the right, Stack sent the puck over her shoulder into the net.
“Mary is one of the best playmakers I have ever played with,” said Stack. “I knew if I stayed out high in the slot, she would find a way to get me the puck and sure enough it was right on my tape. All I had to do was hit it in.”
That goal gave Stack the point to set the new school record. BC coach Katie King, who doesn’t usually point out individual accolades during a game, brought it to the team’s attention during the intermission.
“I think what Kelli did and has done in her career is pretty incredible,” said King. “There have been some great hockey players to come through Boston College; she obviously put herself up there not only by breaking the record, but by how she plays day in and day out.”
Stack and the Eagles did not have much time to celebrate as the Terriers scored just 37 seconds later. Goaltender Molly Schaus fell while following the play, opening the goal up for forward Holly Lorms to send the puck over her glove and into the net.
BC was able to close out the period without allowing any more goals, solidifying a win over its bitter rival.
Despite having the lead for the second and third periods, the Eagles did not seem to have much momentum. They followed seven first period shots with only seven in the next two fames combined.
“Sometimes, I think our kids look for the perfect play rather than getting it on net,” said King. “But we had some real quality opportunities, especially at the beginning of the game.”
It was the Terriers who kept the shots firing toward the goal, with 10 in the second period and 16 in the third. BU ended up outshooting BC 33-14.
“The shots were 33 to 14 or 15 tonight, and that’s a credit to playing both ends of the ice,” said Durocher.
Fortunately for BC, Molly Schaus sits in their goal and can make 32 saves in a game. Schaus only allows 1.4 average goals per game, behind only Sperry in the Hockey East.
“There’s something special about playing in the Beanpot that makes you definitely want to play your best hockey,” said Schaus.
BC forward Taylor Wasylk was sent to the penalty box for body checking with 5:35 left in the game, giving BU a chance to try to tie the score. Defenseman Catherine Ward had the best chance. She picked up the puck off a rebound while speeding towards the net, but Schaus managed to get her glove out just in time and caught the puck. BU attempted 25 total shots in the third, 16 of them on target, but none got by Schaus.
“I wasn’t going to let in any soft goals,” she said. “If they were going to beat me, they were going to have to really beat me.”