For the first time since October 22, the Eagles hockey team will be playing at full strength this afternoon as they host the No. 6/7 Merrimack Warriors at Kelley Rink.
This will be the third game back for junior defenseman Patrick Wey, who underwent successful surgery to repair a severed tendon of his right foot on Monday, October 24. Wey returned to the lineup for Boston College's Great Lakes Invitational run against Michigan and Michigan Tech after missing 12 games. Defenseman Brooks Dyroff started in place of the injured Wey for 11 of those 12 games, recording an assist and a -1 +/- rating.
Bill Arnold also returns to the team after playing for the U.S. at the World Junior Championships. While the U.S. turned in a disappointing seventh place finish in this year's World Juniors, Arnold, along with Austin Czarnik and Jarred Tinordi, were named Team USA's Best Three Players of the tournament. This marked the fourth straight year -- and the 16th time in the last 17 years -- that Boston College sent a player to the World Junior Championship.
The sophomore forward has already matched his 39-game freshman point-scoring total through 18 games this season, and is second on the team in scoring with 11 goals and 9 assists (behind only Hobey hopeful Chris Kreider).
I expect Brian Billett to get the start in net for the Eagles this afternoon. The freshman has come on in relief of junior Parker Milner to post a 3-2-0 record, 2.02 GAA and .932 save percentage. Though Billett got off to a fast 3-0-0 start, he has lost his last two games -- a 3-2 loss at UMass-Lowell and a 4-2 loss vs. Michigan in the GLI.
On Friday, the team was visited by Vancouver Canucks GM Mike Gillis and former Eagles Andrew Alberts ('05) and Cory Schneider ('08). The Canucks were in town to face the B's last night at the Garden. Hopefully whatever was said to the team resonated with the team for today's tilt with Merrimack, as the Canucks upended the defending Stanley Cup champs 4-3.
Game starts at 1 PM. Go Eagles!