If defense wins championships, BC fans have to like their chances. The Eagles scored a goal early, and then put it on autopilot (HA, get it?!) and it held up as Boston College took down Air Force.
BC's two goals bookended the game. Just seven minutes in, Kevin Hayes wrapped around behind the net, threw the puck out front, and Chris Kreider slapped it in for the layup. Then, after a controversial penalty call on Air Force with two minutes left -- though, honestly, there have been so many worse controversial calls in this tournament so far that this one isn't even worth going into -- BC scored on the power play to ice it when Kreider tapped a rebound in off the goalie, tapped the second rebound off the post, and then decided enough was enough and took the third rebound and wrapped it around the post and in.
The Eagles played ... okay. Air Force played very well. They did a good job of keeping BC from completely dictating the game. We had the puck for the vast majority of the game and had a solid number of chances, but only managed to put the puck in the net twice. The Falcons had a few stretches where they really put a scare into us but they just couldn't break through and score.
Normally, you'd be concerned with only scoring two goals, but Boston College hasn't given up three since the very beginning of the winning streak in our come-from-behind win against UNH. Since then, the Eagles have given up:
-- Two goals 5 times
-- One goal 6 times
-- Zero goals 4 times
BC takes on defending champion Minnesota-Duluth at 8pm in Worcester. I watched the Maine/UMD game in person. I was rooting for Maine, because yay non-Terrier Hockey East teams, but also because I know we can and should beat them. After watching, I am more confident in playing UMD. You can't really get too much out of one game in the way of "they look like crap!" or whatever it may be (for example, they'd probably not think very highly of how we played against Air Force) but I think we match up well against them. They play a physical game, pretty typical for the WCHA, and it's something we usually do well against with our speed. It will be the type of game where if we play their game, we'll lose, but if we play our game against their game, we should handle them easily.
My not-so-bold prediction is that BC will score at least one goal where UMD goes for a bit hit along the boards, but the BC skater is able to put on the afterburners, squeak by the hit as the UMD player crashes into the boards, and puts the puck in on the resulting breakaway/partial breakaway.
On a side note, I hate Minnesota-Duluth. A lot of it comes from the women's hockey side of things. But I hope we absolutely throttle these tools (naturally).
How about I feed you some highlights, baby birds?
Enjoy not watching Terrier hockey until October. Go Eagles!