Our eighth best moment of the Boston College sports decade is one of the most thrilling finishes to a men’s hockey game in recent memory: the 2012 Men’s Beanpot.
This obviously won’t be the last time the 2012 men’s hockey season features in our top ten list of best BC sports moments of the 2010s, but this game was a special one. The 2012 men’s hockey roster was jam-packed with talent — Johnny Gaudreau, Chris Kreider, and Brian Dumoulin say hello, among others — and the Eagles were toward the beginning of one of the most impressive runs in the history of the program leading up to the Beanpot final.
On the heels of an awful sweep in Orono, BC rattled off four straight (including a 7-1 demolition of Northeastern in the Beanpot semifinals the week before) to face off against — of course — Boston University for the final. Those of us in attendance bore witness to one of the all-time thrillers in Beanpot history.
The two teams traded goals in regulation, with BC going ahead early, the Terriers tying it in the second, BC responding almost right away, and BU forcing overtime with a goal midway through the third period. But the game was just getting started.
Overtime was just crazy-good hockey. The two teams went back and forth with great chances and the extra period just flew by. Finally, with just 6.4 seconds to play in the first overtime, Steven Whitney found Bill Arnold for just a beauty of a shot blasted into the back of the net for the win.
My personal memory of the winning goal features three specific things. First, Bill Arnold’s swim-move celebration is one of my all-time favorites. Second, the period flew by so quickly that I didn’t even realize there were only 6 seconds left on the clock until well after the goal was scored (I would have thought there were several minutes to go). But most of all, the best part of the moment was the streamers coming down from the BC student section corner of the balcony. Somehow several of us organized bringing in dozens of maroon and gold streamers by giving out a couple each to a whole bunch of students to sneak in — you know, just in case.
It was pretty disorganized given that most of us were in shock from winning the game out of nowhere, but it was still a cool sight... and it gave everyone practice for a bigger moment (spoiler alert!) later in the year.