BOSTON, MA – After erasing a 30-year drought with a Beanpot title win last season, the Huskies skated to a 4-2 victory over Boston College to win back-to-back titles for the first time since 1984 and 1985.
Fittingly, senior forward and Walpole, Mass. native Lincoln Griffin scored the game winning goal early in the third period of his final Beanpot. Sophomore goaltender had an outstanding effort and was awarded with the Eberly Award for the best goaltender in the tournament and the Most Valuable Player award.
The Eagles thought they had the first goal of the contest about six minutes into the game; David Cotton had fired a shot on Primeau that he was not able to play completely cleanly. While trying to clear his crease, freshman forward Oliver Wahlstrom came barreling in trying to play the puck past the goal line; he knocked the net off its bearings in the process and the official declared no goal was scored. A nearly seven-minute review confirmed that the net came loose before the puck crossed the goal line, and the game remained scoreless.
Scoring opened up at 19:21 of the first period. The Huskies had been testing junior goaltender Joseph Woll throughout the entire first period, especially on odd-man rushes and quick plays up the ice. Freshman defenseman Jordan Harris fired a shot wide of the net that was scooped by Griffin; the senior then attempted to wrap the puck around the post on the far-side from Harris’s shot, and Woll was able to make the initial save. However, he did not cleanly control the puck, and senior forward Austin Plevy was able to jam the loose puck past Woll and into the back of the net to make it 1-0 Northeastern.
No one would find the back of the net again until senior forward Pat Schule took a pass from fellow senior forward Liam Pecararo from behind the net and rifled a shot past Woll from the left hash marks. It was Schule’s ninth goal of the season and his second Beanpot goal this year.
Griffin found the back of the net for his first Beanpot tally just over a minute into the third period. Pecararo took aim on Woll and fired a shot on net; Woll made the save, but the rebound came right to Griffin who deposited the puck in the back of the net and sent the crowd into a frenzy.
The tides would immediately turn and the Eagles took commanding control of play the remainder of regulation. At the 4:09 mark Wahlstrom found himself behind the net with the puck and had Cotton all alone right in front of the crease. A crisp pass found its way to Cotton and he was able to tip it home on an unsuspecting Primeau. Cotton would get the primary assist on the other BC goal of the evening when he found sophomore forward JD Dudek at 12:14 of the third. Dudek and Cotton combined for more dangerous scoring chances, but Primeau was able to blank the Eagles the rest of the way.
The icing of the cake came with less than 40 seconds in regulation; junior forward Matt Filipe made a great defensive zone play to get the puck to the Boston College side of the ice. With Joe Woll on the bench for the extra skater, the crowd began to cheer in anticipation of an empty net goal. Filipe couldn’t free the puck from the corner as the Eagles backchecked ferociously to try and regain possession.
They did not.
Sophomore forward Zach Solow, shot out of a cannon, appeared in space behind Matt Filipe and in front of the empty Boston College net. The puck found its way to the stick of the kid from Naples, Fla. and he dumped it in BC’s goal with five seconds remaining in the game.
After one more faceoff, time would expire and the Huskies would celebrate another Beanpot championship. The banner was lowered and the Northeastern addition was re-affixed, the fans continued to cheer on their team, and the players and coached shared hugs and handshakes for a well-earned title.
Northeastern now has six Beanpot titles to their name and became the first team to repeat as Beanpot champions since Boston College won five in a row between 2010 and 2014. Boston University’s Beanpot drought has extended to four seasons, and Boston College’s to three.
The Huskies now enter the final weeks of the Hockey East regular season and will host Vermont at Historic Matthews Arena this weekend on Friday and Saturday. Puck drop for both games is set for 7pm, and WRBB will have full coverage beginning at 6:45 both nights.