Boston College Women’s Hockey went into the final weekend of the regular season with a chance to finish as high as 2nd place in Hockey East, but they couldn’t quite pull it off. Despite being tied late in both games, the Eagles could only muster a shootout loss as their best result on the weekend and fell 4-3 (SO) on Friday and 4-2 on Saturday to the Vermont Catamounts. That leaves the Eagles in 4th place in Hockey East as they head into the conference tournament.
Friday afternoon’s contest was almost as maddening as the Beanpot final against Harvard was. The Eagles trailed 1-0, tied the game, trailed 2-1, tied the game, trailed 3-2, and again tied the game, but this time BC at least got the game to overtime. Unfortunately, neither team could find a winner with 3 on 3 overtime, and the Catamounts had a perfect shootout to take the extra league point in the 4-3 (SO) win.
Saturday’s game was a pretty painful loss, in part because for a little while it looked like BC at least had the important #3 seed in the bag with UConn trailing big against Northeastern and the Eagles up 2-0 in the third period against Vermont. Had those results held, that would have guaranteed that Boston College wouldn’t have had to play Northeastern until the Hockey East championship game, assuming they got that far. Instead, it was a third period disaster as Vermont scored four unanswered goals (one being a bizarre empty net goal) to take the 4-2 win in regulation, keeping BC down in the #4 slot in Hockey East.
That wraps up the regular season, and the league tournament is set:
No. 10 Holy Cross
at No. 7 Providence
No. 9 Merrimack
at No. 8 New Hampshire
Lower-Ranked Opening Round Winner
at No. 1 Northeastern
Higher-Ranked Opening Round Winner
at No. 2 Vermont
No. 6 Boston University
at No. 3 UConn
No. 5 Maine
at No. 4 Boston College
At first glance, this is an annoying bracket given that BC had every opportunity in the world to at least jump up to #3 and avoid a potential bout with Northeastern in the semifinals. But it’s not quite as bad as it looks. To start, the Eagles get a matchup with Maine in the quarterfinal, who the Eagles swept in three games on the season, so it’s a game they should be able to win.
But while the Eagles aren’t guaranteed to avoid #1 NU in the semifinal, it’s actually more likely that they don’t play Northeastern in the semis than it is that they do. BC will only play Northeastern if the #1, #2, #3, and #4 seeds all win — obviously all are favored, but with single elimination, it’s pretty likely that we get at least one upset. According to KRACH, the odds that at least one of UConn or Vermont lose is about 55%. It’s definitely something worth rooting for.
No word just yet on when Boston College’s matchup with the Maine Black Bears will be, as there are some scheduling logistics to work out (the basketball court will be down on Saturday, so the league has to work around that). We’ll update this post once the game date and time are set.