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College Hockey:
BU edges Northeastern in penalty-marred affair

— Sahir Gill delivered the game-winning goal for the Boston University Terriers in their 3-2 win over the Northeastern University Huskies Friday in a very physical game at Matthews Arena Friday night.  Both teams combined for a total of 25 penalties and 92 penalty minutes.

“That was about as wild as it gets,” said BU head coach Jack Parker.  ”This game was just a bizarre game.  The momentum swings were unbelievable. Whoever won that game was going to be very, very fortunate.  And that was us.”

At 5:13 in the first period, Joe Pereira took a penalty shot for the Terriers after being tripped by Steve Silva, but was denied the point.

Still, the Terriers were the first to strike at 16:16 in the first period as Corey Trivino netted his eighth goal of the season.  Matt Nieto found Alex Chiasson open in front of the net, but Chiasson’s shot was blocked by NU goalie Chris Rawlings.

On the rebound, Trivino skated the puck around the back of the net and snuck it in the left side while Rawlings was still down on the ice.  For Chiasson and Nieto, the goal gave them their 1-19 and 10th assists, respectively.

NU earned a 5-on-3 power play when Patrick MacGregor and Nieto were sent off the ice a minute apart from each other for hooking and slashing.  During the two-man advantage, Steve Silva and Adam Clendening were sent to their respective penalty boxes for roughing.

The Huskies began to capitalize on their shots on goal at the start of the second period.  At 1:38 Cody Ferriero send a hard slap shot from the top of the right circle past BU netminder Kieran Millan for his third goal of the season to tie the game at 1-1.  Steve Quailer also earned an assist on the play.

Both teams tacked on five more penalties cumulatively by the end of the second period. BU received a 5-on-3 of their own for 32 seconds when Luke Eibler and Drew Daniels were both whistled for hitting after the whistle and high-sticking, respectively, but the Terriers were blanked by the penalty kill.

The culmination of the physicality came in the third period.  At 6:51, Garrett Vermeersch and Max Nicastro were sent to the penalty box for boarding while Randy Guzior was sent off the ice for a five-minute major penalty and game misconduct for contact to the head of Ryan Ruikka.

BU’s 5-on-4 power play was short-lived when Adam Clandening picked up a five-minute major penalty and game misconduct for hitting from behind.  Clandeing’s penalty marked the beginning a four and a half minute period of consecutive 4-on-4 play.

At 12:44, Jamie Oleksiak was called for holding and was sent off the ice.  Ten seconds later, BU regained their lead when Nicastro sent a rocket from the top of the circles past Rawlings to make the score 2-1.

Looking to respond, NU evened the tally once again with a short-handed one-timer from Steve Silva, which was assisted by Wade MacLeod.  It was Silva’s eleventh goal and MacLeod’s twelfth assist of the season.

The tie lasted for 1:40 when Gill delivered BU’s final goal of the evening shorthanded.  Nieto and Sean Escobedo also earned helpers on the play.

“Obviously we are disappointed,” said NU assistant coach Sebastien Laplante.  ”We put out a good effort.  The penalties killed us.  We were playing a good enough game to compete and we put ourselves in the position to win.  We lost our rhythm and got a little sloppy with our decision-making. ”

By the end of the evening, NU had outshot BU 41-27.  Millan finished with 39 saves and Rawlings with 24. Each team’s defense blocked 15 shots as well.

These cross-town rivals will face off once again tomorrow evening, Saturday, March 5, at Agganis Arena for a 7 p.m. game.

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