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BC vs. Merrimack: Final Thoughts and Predictions

It's First vs. Last tonight at Conte Forum

Graham Beck, The Heights
Tonight, Boston College - the #1 team wire-to-wire in Hockey East so far, and the newly-christened #1 team in the national rankings after Minnesota's loss to Wisconsin last night - takes on Merrimack, the last place team in Hockey East. It's one of the lowest-ranked foes BC will face at home all year... i.e., the exact kind of games that have generally been their toughest challenges at home. The only home games this year that weren't goal fiestas for the Eagles were the infamous loss to Holy Cross, a 2-2 tie with UMass, and a 6-4 win over BU. (Okay, that one was a goal fiesta, but it was a close game.)Those were 3 of the 4 lowest-ranked opponents BC faced at home this year, the other being Army, of course.

You'll hear "trap game" thrown around a lot, with the Beanpot final coming up on Monday night. But historically, it hasn't been the case for the Eagles, who actually have not lost in their game between Beanpot Mondays since 2004.They also haven't lost to Merrimack at home since Thatcher Demko was one year old. Let's hope both trends continue.

BC Roster Notes

Kevin Hayes looked good after being out for most of the game at Providence. Unfortunately, Ian McCoshen will still be out, and is questionable for a return on Monday.

Projected Lines




Game Time: 7:00 PM

Radio: WEEI 850 AM and

Record: BC: 20-4-3..... MC: 7-15-3
KRACH: BC: #2.... MC: #40

Goal Differentials:
BC:117 GF (1st in HEA), 59 GA (4th in HEA), +48 (1st in HEA)
MC: 48 GF (11th in HEA), 69 GA (8th in HEA), -21 (9th in HEA)

Last Time Out: BC beat BU 3-1 in the Beanpot on Monday night. Last weekend, the Mack Attack got swept by Merrimack Valley rivals UMass-Lowell.

Storylines: The Warriors have only one won game this year away from the friendly confines of Lawler Arena. Johnny Gaudreau looks to continue his epic scoring streak. And BC's climb up the ladder in team defense.

Fun Fact: Merrimack is averaging 1.38 goals per game in Hockey East play - or, fewer goals per game than 7 English Premier League soccer teams this season.

Players to watch: They still have Cannata, right? No? Okay, I guess Mike Collins will have to do; he's one point away from 20 on the season.

Lingering Questions

Will Thatcher Demko continue his 5-game streak of allowing 2 goals or fewer since becoming the #1 starter? With BC playing defense-first games lately and Merrimack playing defense-first by necessity will there be any actual goals tonight?

Scoreboard Watching: Out-Of-Town Notes

Nice slate of league games tonight. Monday's foe, NU, hosts UMass. UMass-Lowell hopes to take advantage of a game against lowly BU as they try to run down BC atop the Hockey East standings. Maine plays at Notre Dame in a televised battle of two teams hoping to pin down home ice in whatever they're calling the first round of playoffs (the octofinals?).

Minnesota and Wisconsin are back at it again tonight.

The Pre-Game Watering Hole

Yeah, this is more of a "jump on the T at 6:05 and get there right in time for puck drop" kind of games.

Obligatory Merrimack Black-And-Yellow Remix Video Shout Out:


Joe Gravellese

Boston College 6, Merrimack 1

I'm not the only one predicting a rout in this one. I don't see the coaching staff allowing BC to take this game lightly and the talent gap between these two teams is simply vast. Unlike last game against Merrimack where BC seemed to just avoid taking risks and do what they had to do to come out with a win, I think they'll be emboldened by recent defensive and goaltending performances and go for the jugular.

Grant Salzano

BC 5, Mack 0. Back on track with the > 4 GPG.

Brian Favat

Boston College 3, Merrimack 1. Quintessential trap game for the Eagles heading into a tough Beanpot final matchup against Northeastern. Just not this team. Let me hit you with some #stats. Merrimack is 0-5-2 on the road in Hockey East play ... 1-10-2 overall. 'Mack isn't a very good team but they are a very NOT good road team.

New "Dan Rubin" Guy

BC 6. Mack 1.

Garbage goals for everyone.

BCI Prediction Standings

5 points for a correct prediction, minus one point for how far off you were from the victory margin. i.e., predicting a 4-goal win and it ends up being a 2-goal win = 3 points. Also, 1 bonus point for getting a team's score correct. Enter this week's contest by leaving your predictions in the comments.

The Beanpot Challenge is still underway so we have no winners yet, but if you picked Harvard to beat Northeastern well a) LOL and b) you're probably eliminated. Also, if you picked Girard for the Eberly. I mean JCNG.


Grant - 3.5 wins (Week 5, Week 9, Week 11, Week 12 (tie))
Brian - 3 wins (Week 3 tie, Week 4, Week 6 1/2, Week 14 (tie))
Joe - 2 wins (Week 1, Week 7)

ACal6888: 1 win (Week 10)
giantsfan428: 1 win (Week 8)
Conrad - 1 win (Week 2)
Humble Genius - 1 win (Week 13)T
BCJacket5 - 1 win (Week 6)
AJ - 1 win (Week 3 (tie), Week 14 (tie))
JCNG - 0.5 win (Week 12 (tie))

Leave your thoughts on the game below and see if yIt's First vs. Last tonight at Conte Forumou can climb up the BCI leaderboard, to win all sorts of fabulous invisible prizes. Actually, you know what, I'm making up a prize, right now. The winner of the BCI prediction game for the season gets a 15 minute interview done by New Guy on BCInterruption Radio at the end of the season. Yes, New Guy, I'm committing your time and your studio technology without your permission. Go Eagles!