The Boston College men’s hockey team bounced back in a big way from their loss to Denver on Saturday night, thoroughly outplaying another top 10 opponent in Michigan State en route to a 6-3 win. The big names showed up big time for the Eagles tonight, and the scoreline could have looked even more one-sided if not for a rough stretch near the end of the first period for BC.
After the Eagles had a number of great looks early on, Oskar Jellvik continued his red hot start to the season with his fourth goal of the season. Jellvik was the beneficiary of a great play by linemate Colby Ambrosio, who won a puck battle in the neutral zone and used his speed to set up a 2-on-0 rush. Ambrosio got in close and slid the puck across to Jellvik, who made no mistake and gave BC a 1-0 lead. Ryan Leonard made it a 2-0 game just a few minutes later, finally scoring his first goal as an Eagle after having what felt like a dozen great looks to start the season. This one came on a tip-in after a gorgeous pass from Gabe Perreault as BC’s freshman line continued to be every bit as good as advertised in the early season.. The momentum swung a bit when Michigan State scored a shorthanded goal just a few shifts later to cut BC’s lead in half. The lead disappeared completely with just under two minutes left in the period, when Michigan State scored on the power play after BC took a blatant too-many men penalty for the second game in a row. The Eagles were definitively the better team for almost the entire period, but they had to be satisfied with a 2-2 score after the first 20 minutes of play.
Michigan State took a 3-2 lead about seven and a half minutes into the second period, scoring on an open shot from the slot just a few seconds after Fowler had bailed out a leaky BC defense with a sprawling save. The Eagles immediately followed that up by taking a penalty, but they were able to tie things up with a shorthanded goal of their own when Jellvik picked up a loose puck at center ice for a breakaway and put it away for his second goal of the night. The next chunk of the period was mostly spent with one team on the power play. BC had a few kills of their own while their own power play was mostly quiet, but Will Smith gave the Eagles a 4-3 lead just after a power play chance expired, firing home a wrist shot for his fourth goal in three games to give BC the advantage headed into the third.
The Eagles continued pressuring to start the third period, and they were rewarded with a goal from Jacob Bengtsson. Bengtsson joined a rush and beat his man up the ice, leaving him wide open to direct a perfect pass from Colby Ambrosio past the MSU goalie and into the net, giving BC a two-goal lead. Cutter Gauthier put the game on ice a few minutes later, when he fired home a one-timer on the power play just after a brief two-man advantage had expired. The Eagles had a few more chances down the stretch and largely had the puck in the offensive zone, but that was all they would score in this one. Michigan State got a goal back with under a minute to play to make it a slightly more flattering score line, but this was BC’s game all the way and they took home a 6-4 win to improve to 4-1-0 on the young season.
This was probably BC’s best 60-minute effort of the season, as outside of a few shaky moments here and there, they largely took apart the eighth ranked team in the nation. The Eagles were the better team from the opening puck drop until the final whistle and it was great to see them shake off a tough loss and come back in a dominant fashion. They’ll have a chance to do the same tomorrow night, when they finish up their weekend series with Michigan State.