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GOAL BY GOAL: BC Men’s Hockey Ties Vermont (Again) 2-2

More lost ground

John Quackenbos, BC Athletics

It was same song, different verse for BC men’s hockey on Saturday night.

After blowing a 3-0 lead on Friday and settling for a 3-3 tie, the Eagles did it all over again. BC jumped out to 1-0 and 2-1 leads and blew them both, once against settling for a frustrating tie, this time 2-2, against the Vermont Catamounts.

Boston College Goal #1: 2:09 of the 1st period
Julius Mattila (Graham McPhee, Scott Savage)

BC 1, UVM 0

Once again, just like Friday, the Eagles jumped out to an early lead.

The Eagles set up a nice breakout. Scott Savage sends the puck up to Graham McPhee right as a Catamount is bearing down on him. McPhee’s pass to Mattila is a beauty — he finesses it right around the Vermont skater as Mattila is heading into the offensive zone, and Mattila finishes for the goal.

Vermont Goal #1: 13:27 of the 2nd period
Brian Bowen (Derek Lodermeier, Trey Phillips)

BC 1, UVM 1

The game was pretty even most of the way, with both teams having their opportunities, but it was the Catamounts who struck first.

This is a good wraparound goal for Vermont, but it’s a tough one for Woll to give up. Vermont’s Brian Bowen, the goal scorer, is skating in on net, but Matt Gaudreau has him (however awkwardly) somewhat sealed off. With Gaudreau’s stick disrupting things, Bowen isn’t going to get off much of a shot from there.

The problem is, Woll still overcommits to that side of the net. By the time he realizes what Bowen’s plan is, Woll is way, way out of position (he’s not even in the blue paint of his crease). At this point he’s already beaten, and he has no chance to cover the far post.

Boston College Goal #2 (PPG): 1:41 of the 3rd period
Austin Cangelosi (Colin White, Matt Gaudreau)

BC 2, UVM 1

So, the teams went into the third period tied at one, and you would think BC might take that. Vermont’s a tournament bubble team, after all.

And BC does indeed strike first in the third period. The Eagles get a power play, and, somehow, actually score on it (I know; I was shocked too). It’s pretty decent puck movement, and for once the BC skaters aren’t completely stationary.

I like what Cangelosi does. He’s far outside any potential scoring area — all the way out along the boards, north of the faceoff circle), which allows Vermont to grow a little overconfident in their ability to focus on the side of the ice where the puck is. But Cangelosi recognizes the space opening up in the slot, and once Gaudreau has the puck, Cangelosi starts skating into that open area ready to receive the pass.

Gaudreau puts it right on the blade of his stick, and now Cangelosi has a great scoring opportunity that he is able to cash in on.

Vermont Goal #2: 2:21 of the 3rd period

Brian Bowen (Mario Puskarich, Ross Colton)

BC 2, UVM 2 — FINAL

But Vermont was able to tie the game right back up just 40 seconds later.

This is another goal Woll probably wants back. It’s a harmless play. Vermont has a shot from a bad angle, and Woll is able to seal off the post. The rebound goes below the goal line, and Bowen just slaps at it to send it back where it came from. This time Woll opens up just enough of a gap, and the puck slips through to tie the game.

BC had their opportunities the rest of the game — a two on one in particular with 8 seconds left in overtime that the Eagles couldn’t convert — but had to settle, once again, for a tie after blowing a lead (twice).

BU gained a point on the Eagles in the Hockey East standings, and the Eagles now sit two points up with two games left. Since BU holds the tiebreaker, BC will need to go 1-0-1 in their home-and-home against Lowell to lock up the #1 seed. More importantly, the Eagles were once again unable to make up any ground in the Pairwise, and are looking like they’ll need a significantly deep run in the Hockey East tournament just to have a shot at the NCAA bubble.

There’s still enough hockey to be played to climb back into the picture, but BC needs to clean things up. They’re staring down the barrel of an early end to the season.