BOSTON — Boston College forward Billy Arnold delivered the game-winning goal in overtime Saturday night to help the Eagles soar over the Northeastern University Huskies, 4-3, in front of a sold-out crowd at Matthews Arena. NU rookie Joseph Manno scored two unassisted goals for the Huskies.
“I thought the game reflected really well on our team,” said BC coach Jerry York. “We were down 3-1 and just grinded and found a way to win a hockey game that was kind of slipping away from us. We were able to sustain our energy level even though we were down and time was winding down. I was really impressed myself by watching our club.”
NU goalie Chris Rawlings bounced back after a rough outing against Merrimack on Friday night, making 39 saves while BC netminder Parker Milner stopped 19.
“Chris is battling out there just like the rest of our guys,” said NU coach Jim Madigan. “We can’t keep giving up 40-plus shots a game. Chris is making some really good stops and keeping us in the game. We’ve got to do a better job of taking a better shooting range from the point, and we’ve got to do a better job of moving the puck so there’s not a second or third off the initial shot.”
Discipline proved to be a problem for both teams, as the Eagles and Huskies spent 20 and 16 minutes in their penalty boxes, respectively. BC’s Chris Kreider accounted for eight of those 20 minutes.
The Eagles were the first to strike at 1:55 in the first period when Kreider found Kevin Hayes at the right circle. Hayes hit a hard shot that bounced past Rawlings to give BC the 1-0 lead. The goal marked Hayes’ fifth goal and Kreider’s fourth assist of the season.
At 3:49, Destry Straight was sent to the penalty box on a roughing call. A minute later, Steve Quailer evened the score at 1-1 on a power-play goal. Quailer snuck the puck through Milner’s legs when he was tied up with three other players in a scramble for the puck. Justin Daniels picked up his second assist and Vinny Saponari earned his fourth assist of the year on the play.
NU rookie Joseph Manno gave his team a one-goal lead when he scored his first collegiate goal unassisted at 17:56 in the first after rebounding his own shot in front of the net and tipping it past Milner.
Manno came looking for more at 8:21 in the second when he scored his second unassisted goal of the evening by rebounding a deflected shot off of a BC defender right in front of the net, putting the Huskies up 3-1.
“Joe Manno comes with some intensity, strong on the puck, a toughness to his game,” said Madigan. “He battles out there. You saw him out there going to the net. They’re not pretty goals, but he just drives. He’s got a good shot, he can score from outside, he drives to the net, and he’s strong along the wall.”
NU nearly had its fourth goal a minute later when Drew Ellement sent a hard shot off the left post, but the referees decided on no goal after reviewing the play,
BC cut the deficit to one goal at 8:04 in the third period. Tommy Cross and Paul Carey passed the puck to Barry Almeida, who skated the puck toward the net and shot it just outside of the crease mid-fall past Rawlings.
Three minutes later, the Eagles tied the score at three on a goal by Brian Duomolin. Duomolin skated in front of the net and missed. Pat Mullane found the puck after the missed shot and passed it back to Duomolin for the score. The goal marked Duomolin’s second of the season and Mullane’s fifth helper.
Four minutes into overtime, Kevin Hayes found the puck in the Huskies’ zone and passed to Patch Alber between the circles. Alber shot the puck, and Arnold finagled it to the back of the net to end the game.
“Billy Arnold has had an outstanding weekend,” said York. “Last night and again tonight his game was A+ from my standpoint. This is a very difficult environment to win in, and we were very fortunate that the puck caught the shaft of his stick.”
Northeastern will travel to Durham, N.H. next Saturday, October 29, to face the University of New Hampshire, while Boston College will host the University of Massachusetts-Lowell the same night. Both of those Hockey East match-ups are scheduled for 7 p.m.