Boston University holds off North Dakota charge for spot in championship game

Boston University is into the national championship game for the first time since 2009 (photo: Jim Rosvold).

BOSTON — It will be an all-New England final in the Hub of Hockey, but it certainly wasn’t easy getting there.

Boston University held a commanding 4-1 lead over North Dakota late in Thursday’s second national semifinal and then hung on for dear life, eking out a 5-3 victory to advance to Saturday’s national title game.

The Terriers will face Hockey East foe Providence, a 4-1 winner over Omaha, in Saturday’s national championship game at the TD Garden.

Up three and on the power play, BU allowed a short-handed goal to Troy Stecher on a miscue by BU netminder Matt O’Connor with 7:50 left. Then, after a too many men on the ice call on the Terriers, North Dakota’s Connor Gaarder struck on the power play with 3:43 left to pull within one.

It wasn’t until rookie phenom Jack Eichel scored his second goal of the game with 18.5 seconds remaining, into an empty net, that the game was iced.

Boston University advanced to the national title game for the first time since 2009 when it beat Miami 4-3 in overtime for the school’s fifth national title.


  1. Gotta go ahead and hand it to BU on this one. Get outplayed and outclassed at home, yet still come away with the big W. BU got the puck luck and bounces when it counted. Good (sic) teams do that when it counts. Have watched BU 10+ times this year, have not seen them look any different than they did tonight. Best of luck to Hobey winner Eichel, you looked very average. Rodriguez is straight fire though, no doubt. Go get em Providence, I am your biggest fan on Saturday.

    Big shout out to the top notch officiating crew. Not.

    • Und got outplayed most of the game, both teams got one lucky goal take those away and BU still wins. And Eichel looked better then any other Nodak player, dude is tough to knock off the puck. But i do agree with you on the rooting for providence part. Here’s to next year for all us watching from the sideline.

        • UND got outplayed the first period. They outplayed BU half of the second period and most of the third period. By the time UND got going BU was a ahead and UND is NOT a come from behind team.

          • Another idiot. UND gave up 1 early goal, 2nd goal was garbage on a dive by a defenseman — frickin soccer player crap from the prissy easterners as usual. UND was the better team in the first period in even strength, as they were all game.

            Hit pipe twice, gave up a goal where a guy was in the crease, and then was robbed of their chance to have 2 men up when the refs showed who’s paying them and what they want.

            A complete travesty. Anyone that watched the game and knows the game knows UND wasn’t outplayed in any sense.

          • Calling North Dakota a nice state is like calling Nebraska fun to drive through, its just not true… but I do like fishing Devils Lake.

          • It’s not Chockes. He would have said moron instead of idiot, it’s lacking grammatical errors and there are “big” words that Chockes would’ve have in his vocabulary.

          • I don’t know – he’s used “moron” several times since he woke up, but that might just be the hangover talking…

          • You’re right. He’s playing his multiple account game. He had to start using multiple accounts when Wisco destroyed him week after week after week…

          • Another gracious UND fan in defeat. Maybe Hakstol should have pulled a Bo Ryan and said, “We don’t do rent-a-player.” It was a great game and the better team doesn’t always win.

        • 15 minutes about where UND really controlled the game and that was about it… you must not know hockey that much… cause 15 min of out playing a team doesn’t win games… i suggest you watched the game agian. i actually I’m

    • Like anyone, Eichel will have outstanding games and average games. He was not average tonight. To call him “average”, you would have to have several UND players with four points, several players able to match Eichel’s speed and several players able to match his hockey IQ. I’m waiting.

      • He really didn’t do much. The puck was attracted to him like a magnet. Empty netter, lucky rebound, 1 in a million shot off a routine pass.

        • That’s what great players do. The puck finds them to the tune of > 70 points this year and they make it look like they aren’t even trying. Eichel is in a class with Paul Kariya and he was a pretty good player, eh?

          • Great players just have the puck land on their stick? Whatever dude. He wasn’t a big factor, live with it.

          • “puck finds them” is hockey talk for being where the puck is likely to go. It’s a skill. It’s not luck.

          • That’s BS. he stood there doing nothing for like 7 seconds and then a puck bounced to him and he shot it into an open net because a defender took out the goalie. Top drawer stuff, I’m sure that’s gonna take him far.

          • My fault, he made great play after great play and controlled the game and willed his team to victory. I mean that’s the narrative, so everyone jump on board even though he was a passenger for most of the game.

          • Translation: you got nothing. He was not a game controller at all. He was fortunate to be where he was twice, and then got an empty netter anyone could have scored.

          • There’s a *lot* of stuff that you don’t see, apparently. You should work on that. Removing the blinders might help.

          • Where was Eichel today? Skill implies repeatability. He was a non factor for the most part. He really wasn’t a game-changing presence against UND either…just floated around and the puck happened to find him. Didn’t find him tonight and they got beat in front of their home fans.

        • Yeah, I always thought that Wayne Gretzky guy was the same way. Puck followed him around all the time. Only time it didn’t was when it was going into the net. Luckiest bastich I ever seen.

          • I follow the Red Wings, so I get to watch Pavel Datsuyk on a regular basis. He’s another one of those guys that “don’t do much”. You wonder how those guys ever made the league…

          • You’re a retard. Gretzky absolutely owned games. He didn’t fool around and wait for fortunate things to happen. I can see why Eichel didn’t figure in the regional.

    • “At home”? There were plenty of UND fans at the TD Garden and UND was the home team officially. Maybe BU was lucky and maybe they made their own luck. If anything determined the game, it was two soft goals let in my McIntyre vs one for oConnor.

    • Good job – Fighting Sioux 1-7 in Frozen Four over last 11 seasons. Guess all the other years refs were the problem? Why should this year be any diff – of course it was the arena or the refs or whatever excuse you desire.

    • Back in the day when TV and ESPN didn’t do everything to favor east coast teams because none of us in fly-over land know anything about hockey we used to win national championships. Melrose and Buccigas are so bad!!! Now it’s all set up by the TV $$$. How perfect….BU vs the Farters!!! 10 miles apart from the hometown venue….I hope it’s sold out. Probably not….
      the Ralph and Mariucci are sold out every night….FOREVER!!! Maybe someday when you guys really figure out how to play hockey you’ll come to our hood and run with the big dogs. Otherwise stay in your hockey least (east) area and pat yourselves on the back.

      • I don’t know what attendance has to do with the quality of the hockey. That’s decided on the ice and the NCHC went 1-5 this year. BU games attract 6000 fans and the capacity is 6150. Maybe that’s because one can also go to a Bruins game or a Celtics game or a Patriots game. What else is there to do in the winter in Grand Forks?

      • Just another year and another lost opportunity for the Fighting Sioux. Sorry about the sour apples, they always seem to have an east coast flavor

        • Be nice to have a Frozen Four in North Dakota someday. But that’ll never happen because ESPN is in New England.

          • The other reason it won’t happen is because North Dakota doesn’t have an NHL-size building to hold it. 11,640 ain’t gonna cut it. Those 50,000 Indian heads that Ralphie insisted on putting into the building doesn’t help, either. If it makes you feel any better, I’m pretty sure they’ll never hold a FF in Houghton, Michigan either. Too bad, they could hold it at old Dee Stadium (capacity under 1900) and we could *really* show ’em…

          • One more thing… For the record – the next three FF are in Tampa, Chicago, and St. Paul.
            I consider Tampa to be a truly neutral site, since I doubt that the closest program (Alabama-Huntsville) can step up it’s game by then.
            In any case, it’s never too late to start formulating your excuses for the coming years. In case you needed help finding a problem with Chicago, here’s something you might be able to use: the Big Ten offices are in the Chicago Burbs. Run with it.

          • You’re a complete moron. These two things have nothing to do with each other. UND has the best facility in the country. It puts the XCel Center to shame. Anyone that’s been to both knows that. But ridiculous trolls on the Internet that don’t know crap probably don’t.

            Glad to see you can use wikipedia, though.

          • You’re awesome. Nodakers are so blinded by simple logic. They remind me of little kids that can’t deal with consequences. Racist Ralph and company dug in their heals and lost, but they just can’t deal with it.

          • Yeah because they don’t want to have to go to North Dakota’s home turf and try to win. But it’s fine to ask western teams to go back east 3 years out of 4.

      • I’m from Detroit, and I’ve gotta say it – I’ve been to Grand Forks. Y’all ain’t got a hood. Not even on the Minnesota side.

    • Nice back-handed compliment. Yes another “average” 3 point night for Eichel, to reach 70 for the season. If you have watched BU that many times, you would know they have won many different ways all year, but tonight was different. They took some dumb penalties they have not taken since 1st part of the year. They let NoDak intimidate them in 3rd period. That’s rare. If O’C does not give that shortie away, it ain’t a nail biter at the end.

    • Yet another Nodaker that doesn’t get it. You’re passive aggressive rhetoric couldn’t be further from the true. It’s hard to win with a team without top end scoring talent that’s relies on defense gives up four (5 with the EN) goals at a Frozen Four.

  2. UND get essentially home games and a weak region and still cannot win an NCAA Championship. UND Chokers should be the new name for the university.

      • I have to say a fan of neither but that BU player should be suspended for the that hook job when coming on the ice. I could be wrong but I believe the UND guy got two for running into the ref horrific call to be honest. Even if you are a BU fan no place in this game.

        • Typical BU…take a dive to get a penalty, then take a cheap shot and rely on the refs to run interference for you. Typical eastern hockey in the ESPN era. Will only get worse with expansion. Say bye bye to fairly called games with TV and big money in the mix. Next year will be all about propping up the failing Big Ten.

        • Good point. Question – is there such a thing as supplemental discipline similar to the NHL where the video would be reviewed and a suspension levied? Presumably, the NCAA would have to handle it as far as the next game is concerned. Past that, I suppose HE could do something effective next season, presuming the kid even comes back. In any case, I couldn’t argue with that kid being suspended for the final.

        • Not defending E-Rod, but NoDak wa running the goalie a lot, especially late in the game. Plus the hit on O’reagan at center ice was cheap too. NoDak was trying to intimidate in the 3rd period and E-Rod made a dumb move. Making this out as just BU is pretty lame if you actually watched the whole game live.

        • OK. lets be fair here a little, NoDak was running the BU goalie throughout 3rd period and on that play in question. Refs let it get out of control by not calling it once. BU retaliated. They should not have but they did. Refs lost control so don’t make this out that Sioux were choir angels. They have a reputation for doing this in FF, especially under Hakstol. UMD played clean throughout reg’l final. 3 penalties the entire game and 2 were matching.

      • Never got to find out since they took Pattyn for getting attacked. Hope he took care of that guy in the parking lot.

  3. Well, there should be exactly 356 fans watching, cause that’s all both those teams had watching all year. Hey Todd, why don’t you talk when you get to 7 championships, you frickin idiot, How has the NCAA’s been the last 4 years–oh yeah you didn’t make it cause you choked so bad you couldn’t even get there. What a moron.

    • Got any more NCHC teams to challenge Hockey East? No? Well I guess 5 is enough. 5-1. That’s the only stat you need to dream about. 5-1…or rather 1-5.

      • If you ask really politely, maybe Western Michigan and Colorado College can be persuaded to come out and show us all how it’s *really* done.

    • So i guess Michigan can talk and you will shut up? Yeah keep living in the past. And i believe that BU has won a national championship more recent then UND so until und shows they can actually win the really meaningful games just admit defeat and join us on the sidelines rooting for the underdog Providence.

      • But… But… all those NCHC games *were* significant, weren’t they? I mean, because *Pairwise* and all. Right?

  4. All I heard about was how NCHC could have 4 teams in FF…….well well well, what happened? NCHC had 6 chances against HE and ended up 1-5/ ‘NUFF SAID

    • Yes, plenty of comments about the “weak schedule” of Hockey East Schools. But on the ice Providence beat Denver and Miami and Omaha. BU beat UMD and UND. Denver beating BC is the only NCHC win. In my opinion, the reason for Hockey East dominance is that they recruit throughout the US and Canada and even Europe. BU has players from California, Texas, the Midwest, Northeast, New England, Canada and Finland, Next year BU will have two players from Russia. UND roster is mostly from 4 midwestern states and several Canadian provinces.

      • I agree HE showed its grit in the big games, but don’t think that is the reason Mike. HE has always been one of the 2 best conferences for many years now. The competition top to bottom is strong as is old WCHA and new NCHC. They are two best conferences year-in and year-out. Its just this year HE is better in the big games. That’s all. Would love to see HE square off with NCHC early in the year with top 8 teams playing each other in 2 game weekend series. Now wouldn’t that be fun?

        New WCHA was the paper tiger, but many already knew that. Omaha was the real weak link. PC outplayed the Mavs in every category that mattered. Omaha never competed once in the game. Sure makes Blaise bulletin board quotes look lame.

        • East, esp HE, has dominated the west the past decade, not just this year. BC won three national championships and BU, if they win, will have two. In any case we will have a HE champion this year. Then add in Union and Yale and that makes 7 out of 10.

    • Heh. Western Michigan and Colorado College shoulda made the tournanent – then the NCHC *really* woulda showed ’em.

        • See? See? Now, that’s what I’m talking about! Now all we have to do is cut the field in half, and hold all the games in Grand Forks, and everything’ll be right as rain! Three cheers for the NCHC! Banzai! Banzai! Banzai! (that’s Japanese for those of you in Rio Linda – who knew Rio Linda was actually in North Dakota?)

          • I respectfully disagree. The NCCH playoff tournament should replace the new national tournament. The NCAA tournament would then be reformatted comparable to the NIT in college basketball – teams 9 – 24 would qualify.
            Of course, the NCCH tournament (new national tournament) would be held annually at Racist Ralph Arena.

          • Pretty much exactly what I had in mind. Just waiting to see what kind of excuses they come up with when Nodak *still* doesn’t win.

  5. And the NCHC was the most dominant conference in college hockey this year? The media has been perpetrating this myth for years about western teams dominating, and it hasnt been true for years. Not even close. BU and Providence dominated their games. Bottom line, the 2 finalists are Hockey East teams.

    • Sure would be nice if there weren’t two New England regionals every single year and the western teams usually have to go back east for the Frozen Four. But I’m sure that makes no difference. Come out to Grand Forks and play a Frozen Four. Will never happen because the NCAA wants ESPN to be happen and what did the E in ESPN used to stand for? Eastern.

      • Been there done that. BC did it repeatedly and Yale did it 2 years ago. Sure would be nice if someone taught you a little humility like Sparky in the other thread on the game.

    • On the media note… I thought the play-by-ply stunk (So I turned it off after the 1st) and the studio crew (despite a knowledgeable Starman) was not all that prepared. Kessinich’s in-game interviews were the only saving grace.

  6. The Sioux dominated the game and it is not even arguable. BU got the puck luck. And yes, the NCHC was the dominant conference. 300 fans and they come out of the woodwork tonight.

  7. HAKSTOL NEEDS to get FIRED!! He gets OUT COACHED Once again in EVER “Big Game” & Games against the word Boston in them!!! Just like Denver’s old coach George Gwozdecky Can’t Win Big Games u get FIRED!!!! But at Least George Won 2 National Titles at Denver!

    • Yes the nodak fan i agree with!!! I agree on hak, it’ll be interesting if nodak pulls the trigger and goes in a different direction. Nodak deserves better then third best especially with the loaded teams year in and year out

      • Getting to the Frozen Four is good enough for anyone else, but for UND you need to be winning games there…at least one, if not two.

        He showed no fire at all — team came out flat and gave up an early goal, and took forever to get going in the 3rd and he showed no emotion during the time out. Players need to play for their coach, and players don’t play for Hakstol.

      • Got anybody in mind for that? Correct me if I’m wrong, but if Hakstol was Dean Blais’ pick for the job in the first place, I doubt Blais would agree to come back. That means they’d have to poach someone else’s coach, right?

      • Loaded? That isn’t enough in today’s college hockey world because lots of teams are loaded with kids headed to the NHL – in reality or in their dreams. But these talented kids have to be managed as student athletes and that is the coaching staff’s job. The coach has to get inside their heads and deal with their academic problems, personal problems, injuries, performance and so many other things. And then there is talent management which is so important. Quinn put Oksanen – a defenseman since he was 11, as a winger on the first line and then on the second line – resulting in 24 goals. He put Greer, the youngest freshman in all college hockey, on the second line for the big game against North Dakota and he puts in a laser fed to him by Eichel. And of course he moved Rodriguez up to the first line and he has put up 60+ points this year good for second in the nation. He hired Scott Young, a BU alum, NHL star and Olympian as director of hockey operations and the whole program now runs like an NHL club in recruiting, talent evaluation, training and skill development. “Loaded” doesn’t mean a thing today and it certainly doesn’t mean victory. I’m not going to comment on NoDak coaching but I do recognize excellent coaching at BU under David Quinn.

        • Other coaches have won with less talent on the roster, it is certainly easier said then done. But I think a few would have won with the talented rosters that UND has had. Just my opinion and I could be wrong, but I guess its all speculative. But this not winning in the frozen four for Hak is definitely a trend that doesn’t seem like it will be broken soon. I could see maybe if he made more national championship games but he’s only got out of the semis once and that was ten years ago.

          • Yes, there is something special about playing in the frozen four – you are going to meet teams just as loaded and maybe more hungry than yours. Then the small imponderables of coaching come out in the open.

        • All great points about Quinnie which is why we are so thankful that Parker finally stepped aside and were able to convince Dave to come back. He should have been coach after 2009 as was expected by some. Next couple of years BU will be loaded with or without Eichel. We need a more consistent goalie as O’C keep giving up the worst kind of goals in big games. Fortunately the last two games they still managed to win. Don’t think they can win without a strong game from him tomorrow night.

          • Yes, I felt that Jack Parker had run out of gas and had reached retirement age. Quinn was a great choice.

            Agree we need OC to put that mistake behind him. Fortunately, he is a calm mature kid and usually doesn’t let things bother him. For better or worse, he is our goalie Saturday.

    • Don’t embarrass yourself. Speak with class, and respect the fact that a good group of Nodak kids lost a big game. They played the game and you didn’t, so don’t take that away from them. I’m sick of trash like you. Get bent.

  8. Tell you what Davey, Western teams have won 47 national championships and east has won 20. Top 4 teams winning national championships are all from the west. Top ice rinks for attendance are all from the west. East has the Napolean complex, together with their 300 fans! BU had the puck luck tonight which you need once in a while to win games, and they won.

    • Yeah you r right, Puck luck (or lack thereof) in 5 of 6 games vs Hockey East opponents must be the answer. The world was once flat too

    • How many NCAA Division I Men’s Ice Hockey trophies have gone out west since 2007? And there ain’t one heading west in 2015. But yes, the 1950s and 1960s were dominant times for the west.

    • What an absolutely dumb comment. They played the 1st 10 FF in Colorado Springs!!! Colorado Springs. No wonder CC won their only two championships on home ice. The point some of us are making is the lack of humility from some of you with an extreme western bias is a bit much given the way the pendulum has swung the past 20-25 years. No one is saying that now the Eastern conferences are better, but they are equal now. Just a swing of the pendulum. Someone ought to take NotAFamousAnything’s PC away from him as he doeth type much nonsense too much.

  9. This game is great evidence that single elimination is stupid in hockey. No one with any sanity can say this game was indicative of anything. This game would have had this result about 1 in 100 times the way it was played. Officials made terrible calls twice that either gave BU a goal or put them in a power play. Nice soccer dive on the “boarding”. They’d never make it in the NCHC playing fancy pants crap like that.

    Hit the pipe twice, have the refs send your extra skater to the box because he was viciously attacked…and here you are. ESPN and the NCAA got what it wanted, that’s why they had two New England teams that never had to leave New England the whole time. What a joke.

      • So that means you get to play the whole tournament within 100 miles of home? You weren’t the 1 seed.

        The real problem is there were two new england regionals in a year where the Frozen Four was in New England. Should never happen.

        Never see a regional in Minnesota and one in North Dakota, do you? That’s how you get garbage teams like Providence in the final.

        • Um, if a “garbage” team beat three – count ’em – THREE – NCHC teams… in consecutive games… that must make the NCHC *worse* than garbage, right?

          • A little recommendation for lullaby music this evening: Joe Cocker’s version of “Drown In My Own Tears”. I’d have suggested his “Cry Me A River”, but that’s too upbeat for the mood, don’t you think?

          • You got any worth listening to?
            Yeah, I know – I sound just like my dad. I’d tell you to deal with it, but you’re having enough trouble dealing as it is.

          • I don’t care what you listen to, but don’t expect anyone else to care if you listen to old music that was never that good to begin with.

          • Watch it, or I’ll have you locked into a room with Wisco’s Slim Whitman collection and have you listen for satanic messages. Many better men than you have emerged whimpering like a baby. Sort of like you are now, only about an octave higher…

        • Is it BU’s fault the FF was in Boston this year? That decision was made over two years ago by the NCAA. You’re grasping at straws. Were you complaining when MN won the title in St Paul in 2002?

          • My point was pretty clear. Two New England teams in the title game that never had to leave New England in the entire tournament? What was yours in incorrectly saying that North Dakota never left North Dakota?

            Btw, Nodak is not a thing. It’s not a nickname, it’s not a state. It’s being too lazy to type out North Dakota or use the shift key to type UND. That’s pretty damn lazy.

          • Your point is utter nonsense. Nodak had the exact same – no – BETTER circumstances than BU and Providence for their regionals (fans could actually get in to see the East/Mideast regionals, as opposed to Fargo). The location of the FF was known to the entire world (including, presumably, you!) at least 2-3 years in advance. Everyone entered the tournament knowing where the FF would be played. To my knowledge, nobody whined about the location until two (of the what – 10 or so Division 1 programs within 100 miles of the Gardens) actually had the bad taste to knock off teams from the Obviously Superior Greatest Hockey Conference EVAH ™.

            By the way, anyone who writes “Btw” probably shouldn’t chirp about someone else’s laziness. And while we’re at it, in my day, Nodak was occasionally used as an insult. So there is that…

          • Great, so the NCAA rammed it down people’s throats years in advance. Guess that makes it right.

            I’m waiting for the year that both Minnesota and North Dakota host regionals and one of them hosts the frozen four in the same year. Not expecting it to be soon. ESPN is the worst possible thing for college hockey because they’ve skewed it to where the east has every advantage.

  10. For all nodak fans thinking you outplayed BU go watch the replay on espnU right now, BU controlled play all of 15 minutes. And Nodak got a lucky bounce with that shorthander too so don’t say it was the lucky goal BU had.

  11. Ladies and gentlemen, may I have your attention please…

    The TD Garden management and the NCAA requests that NCHC fans please refrain from crying on the ice surface. The sodium content of huge volume of tears changes the freezing point of the ice, making the refrigeration unit work harder and makes the ice mushy.

    Please, if you must cry, deposit your tears in the urinals conveniently placed around the arena. Thank you for your consideration and sportsmanship.

  12. Weak excuses Not Famous, weak. FF was played in Minn in 2011;2010 in Detroit; 2008 in Denver etc, Also font understand the 300 fan comment. Must be from someone who never went to a BU game.

  13. People can’t complain where the games are played. They are set in advance and it is what it is. Fans don’t generally don’t show up for games out east. Nice crowd last night as there is in almost all frozen four settings, but during regular season fans out there don’t support their teams inn he same manner that the strong “western” teams fans support them. You have very few locations for the regions that will have fan support for the games. Those locations are colorado, minnesota and North Dakota. FF are different. And yes I have been to games and have a nephew there. Student and fan support is poor

    • “.. but during regular season fans out there don’t support their teams inn he same manner that the strong “western” teams fans support them.”

      ‘Splain that one to me a bit more. You seem to suggest something less than rabid fans here int he East. Will say we don’t have cheerleaders at games. And fans don’t travel the same as Western teams, but what else were you suggesting?

    • “Those locations are colorado, minnesota, and North Dakota” (sic).
      Let me fix that for you: those locations are Grand Forks, ND, Denver and Colorado Springs, CO and Minnesota. Now. Draw a 100-mile radius circle around Denver and Grand Forks. Within those two circles, how many D-1 programs exist within (hint – there are 3)? Now – how many D-1 programs exist within Minnesota? OK. Now, draw that same 100-mile circle around Boston. How many D-1 programs within *that* circle? Note that there are more D-1 programs with Metro Boston alone than there are within the entire states of Colorado and North Dakota. Combined.

      You fail.

  14. Does UND ever lose a game out right? I heard the same whining last year after they lost to Minnesota. BU was the better team last night — I love hearing about BU’s puck luck, but yet no mentioned of NoDak’s second goal. Quite honestly, BU made the game closer than it should have been. People who say Eichel is average or just ok or whatever are morons, the dude is clearly a stride faster and more skilled than anyone the ice, plus he showed up in the big game unlike a certain goalie who was also Hobey candidate.

    On the other hand, can we stop whining about who made the tournament and how Hockey East should have had more teams in the tourney. Yes, they domindated the NCHC (and yes, the big team sucks — I get that), but the computers are the decider, there is no opinion involved. The formula is the formula, there is no western bias. Yes, the East has dominated the tournament past 8 years, but check out the 10 before that. These things are cyclical.

    Oh, and the games are played where they are scheduled to be played — teams play on their home ice (or near it), if they earn it like UND and BU did for the round of 16 and round of 8.

    I’m a Gopher fan, and I can admit that both UND and BU would have beaten the Gophers this year 7 – 8 times out of 10.

    • Great post, man… The way it is! And “BU made the game closer than it should have been” is right on. Sitting back on D in the 3rd doesn’t work for them… Not BU’s style.
      The East-West thing is dead. The traditional powerhouses can’t stockpile all the talent anymore… Top-end talent comes from everywhere and there is more of it. Recruits now go everywhere and will anywhere there is a scholarship available.

    • Still think Eichel showed up in the big game? Invisible in the championship game, lucky to get on the point sheet.

      • I guess if you only look at the stat sheet, that’s all you’d get.

        I wish the Gophers had many more players who “lucky” like Eichel.

  15. My take… This was not a great game, which was disappointing. I’ve seen both teams play better. Each team got bounces. Each team hit posts (mostly side posts), and one terrific shot for a goal. Each had 10-minute stretches where they played better, or played worse. BU found ways to win, simple as that. BUT, anyone thinking Eichel wasn’t the most skilled player on the ice, doesn’t know hockey.
    Providence looked like the best team yesterday.

    • Agree on all points. Friars have played great the last two games. They are big, cycle down low better than anyone now and block a lotta shots. Plus Gillies is best goalie thus far in the playoffs. Ha had 8 minute lapse against Miami in 3rd period, but otherwise … Saturday’s game will be low scoring with lots of back checking by both team. And thinking Eichel wasn’t the best player on the ice last night was watching some other game.

      • Just for record, I said “skilled” not necessarily the “best” hockey player… yet. I think he needs another year at BU. He has to develop some grit to compete nightly at the NHL level, be more physical… It’s there, he just hasn’t pressed it.

        • I agree with your assessment of Eich and hope he takes another year. He does need it cause the NHL will be equally as fast and skilled and will check him whit more success than the teams he has faced this year. You take him off this team and they would have been borderline to make the dance. They would not have gotten out of any regional. Providence would beat BU tonight without Eich. BU Is VERY young including Eich. I hope he stays.

          • Take a look at the early departure list in the bar above on the Standings page… 95% juniors, a handful of sophs. And those are the best players or the more NHL-ready leaving. BUT, he’s had so much hype from the media… The Coyotes? may not want to wait.

          • Agreed. He gets double teamed, but still manages to find the open guy or create space to make a play. His play for the Greer goal was his best play of the night. He never panics, the game is in slow motion for him. The 1st goal was a blind, back to the net no look flip with little effort or hesitation. Makes it look easy, bu in the NHL it won’t be as easy. I hope he stays one more year. If so this team will be a beast with only 2 seniors going and best recruiting class in years coming in.

          • Include UML, BC, and PC in the mix!
            Not many impact seniors on any roster… Nearly all HEA will be a year older and improved.

          • For what it’s worth, I’m not sure that staying at BU is any sort of realistic option, given the money that’s going to be on the table. If he’s not ready for the NHL by fall, he’d be sent to the AHL for seasoning (which, according to some, might almost be as good as playing in the NCHC…). The risk of injury while playing for BU and losing that first contract seems to be just too great. He may be weighing more personal factors, but I can’t know what those are.

          • Hey good call, they beat BU even with Eichel! :)

            You’re right about one thing, we probably won’t be hearing from BU now for a while.

  16. To everyone saying BU got “lucky” and UND “dominated” the game:

    UND carried the play at times, sure, but so did BU. Shots on goal were even in the 1st, +4 for UND in the 2nd, +7 for UND in the 3rd when BU was more concerned with protecting the lead than scoring goals.

    BU had one goal that probably shouldn’t have gone in (Somersby’s), but UND got lucky on Stecher’s too.

    Point being it was a pretty well played game by BOTH teams, and while UND *might* have had better play overall, they certainly didn’t dominate and BU didn’t win because of luck.

  17. I’m enjoying the “puck luck” comments the most.

    1) BU’s goalie hands UND a short handed goal.

    2) Too many men on the ice.

    3) A BU player is hit by a shot and out of the play creating a temporary 5 on 3 power play which is converted.

    4) Their first goal is very lucky.

    5) UND fans claim they’re so superior, but have no clue.

  18. At least UND is consistent. Last year’s game winner was the player’s first goal on the season. LOL!!!

  19. I’ve been saying it all season. The NCCH isn’t the best conference. Since Wisconsin and the Gophers left the WCHA, Hockey East is now the country’s best conference.

  20. I thought Macs was a Hobey candidate. How can that be true? It’s hard to win when the goalie gives up four soft goals. The fifth goal was the only one that’s understandable.

  21. I’m not taking you back, Chockes.
    You should stay away from Grand Forks. Something smells up here and it’s not me or Grand Fork’s sewage disposal ponds.

  22. **(set to the sound of a scary ghost voice)**
    I’m going to continue to haunt you until the NCAA returns the team’s rightful name. ooooooo ooooo oooooo…….

  23. Did anyone tell Hakstol that BU was #2 in PP! What is wrong with the NCHC/West? A second year coach with underclassmen! Time for a change. What’s the worst that could happen? No Frozen Four and out?

  24. “Holds off” is way too generous. The fresh-soph team with a second year coach dominated the #1 ranked team!

  25. For all the trolls unable to think with even a hint of reason, explain this to me. BU lost to the 22nd, 23rd, 28th, and 32nd ranked teams and Providence lost to the 19th, 23rd, 28th, 30th, 32nd, 37th, 45th, and 47th ranked teams. Using your logic for the UND/BU game then all of those teams must be better than BU and Providence right?? On Thursday night, BU was the winning team but they did get outplayed for a majority of the game. This is in no way indicative of “which conference is better”. I only watched the game once as it happened and haven’t re watched to see if my initial thoughts are the same(some people do work you know) but here’s my take on the game. McIntyre gave up three soft ones. UND didn’t give up. As a matter of fact, they really took it to BU for some significant stretches. Reffing was iffy at best. Both ways but UND did come out on the short end. In the first, Caggiula was steaming through center ice and a BU player tripped him. No call. A few minutes later, UND player taps the toes of Eichel’s right skate. Eichel takes a stride with his left then goes down on his next stride on the right. Is it a penalty? Yes of course it is but it was less of one than the BU player committed.Before anyone says a penalty is a penalty let’s talk about interference. BU over and over again had players moving in front of and slowing down UND players going after the puck on a dump in. That is a penalty and was not called all night long. If BU isn’t allowed to do this, they’re burned by UND’s speed and spend the whole game chasing. Did the better team win? No.


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