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GOAL BY GOAL: Boston College Hockey Limps Into Playoffs With 3-1 Loss To Lowell

Both literally and figuratively

BC Athletics

BC's 15 game unbeaten streak was particularly impressive given how many games they won against top competition with less than a full roster.

But Saturday night, once again without Colin White or Chris Calnan in the lineup, playing through the grind of Hockey East with a short bench finally caught up to the Eagles. Looking battered and weary at times and just flat at others, Boston College fell 3-1 to Lowell at Tsongas Arena to conclude their regular season and head into a much needed bye week.

Lowell Goal #1: 9:17 of the 1st period
A.J. White (Michael Louria, Tommy Panico)

UML 1, BC 0

BC never game themselves a chance. in this game. The Eagles only managed 5 shots in the first period (granted, they held Lowell to 5 of their own), but they were flat from the drop of the puck. It was only a matter of time before Lowell scored.

That's not to say that Lowell didn't play well -- they absolutely did, and this goal was a nice, crisp play.

The Riverhawks win the draw back and send the puck on net through traffic. It looks like AJ White gets a stick on the shot in which deflects over to the side of the net. Louria sends it right back where it came from before any Eagle can react, and White has an open net to shoot at on the one timer.

On the whole, the first period was pretty slow for both teams. 10 combined shots might be a season low.

Boston College Goal #1: 4:34 of the 2nd period
Alex Tuch (Casey Fitzgerald, Zach Sanford)

BC 1, UML 1

The second period was even worse than the first for BC as they got outshot 13-6, but they had the only goal of the frame because #hockey.

This goal was a nice bright spot in an otherwise dull evening. Sanford makes a really nice play to skate the puck deep and then look back to the trailing D. Fitzgerald The Younger goes 360 to work his way toward the center of the ice and dishes to Tuch who's all by his lonesome down low.

He puts it right on the stick where Tuch can really get some muscle behind it, and even on the tough angle he's able to force it through.

Incredibly, after all that, BC was tied 1-1 into the 2nd intermission and opened the third period on a power play, seemingly putting the Eagles in a position to maybe steal a win, or at least a point. But the game got away from them early on in the third.

Lowell Goal #2 (SHG, GWG): 0:21 of the 2nd period
Tyler Mueller (John Edwardh)

UML 2, BC 1

First thing's first. Does that guy really have an "h" at the end of his name? "Edwardh"? That's obnoxious.

Anyway, you can see what happens to burn BC right off the bat. That same move that made Casey Fitzgerald look like a wizard on BC's goal makes him look like the goat on this one. It's the exact same play -- Wood skates in deep and then drops the puck back up top to get something set up -- and Fitzgerald tries the 360 move he went with earlier, but Lowell was ready for it.

Then they're off to the races. It's a partial 2 on 1, but that doesn't really matter. Mueller stops short at the top of the faceoff circle and goes bar down on an absolute laser beam over the shoulder of Demko -- not an easy thing to do on the 6'4" goaltender.

BC's goose was really cooked then and there, but the Riverhawks would really ice is a few minutes later.

Lowell Goal #3: 
John Edwardh (C.J. Smith, Joe Gambardella)

UML 3, BC 1 -- FINAL

God there's that unnecessary "h" again. Who does that? Seriously.

In re-watching these goals, I'm really not giving Lowell enough credit here. BC might have been flat, but they looked flat because Lowell outworking them made them look flat.

This is a great play from the beginning and it's all fight from Lowell. The Riverhawks win battles all over the place to earn this goal. First it's along the boards, but then it's Smith diving at the puck after Gambardella loses control of it.

Smith's whack at the puck sends it on net, and after Demko leaves a rebound on the doorstep, it's Edwardhhhhhhhhhh who catches Kim flat-footed to send in the rebound and ice the game.

There are a few things to console you if you're a BC fan.

  1. The penalty kill once again looked terrific.
  2. Lowell's win forced BU out of a first round bye.
  3. BC's lack of fight was so out of character you can almost entirely write off the game as an outlier.
  4. This:

  5. BC already had the #1 overall seed locked up for the tournament, giving them the lowest remaining team throughout the playoffs and home ice, where they play so well, until the TD Garden.
  6. The Eagles are still in position to claim a #1 seed in the NCAA tournament should they win the Hockey East title.
  7. Most importantly, BC now has a much-needed two week break where they can finally get healthy. Colin White will be back on the ice for the quarterfinals, and it should be noted that BC is 1-3-0 without White playing.

The break is huge for the team, but might cause withdrawal symptoms for the rest of us. The women's team is 36-0-0 and will play for the Hockey East title next week. The semifinals are Saturday with the finals Sunday afternoon on NESN, so you can get your hockey fix while we wait for the men to heal up for the stretch run.