Picking overtime goal leads No. 12 Northeastern past Vermont

By: Josh Brown

BURLINGTON, Vt. – Friday night had all the makings of a trap game for the No. 12 Northeastern men’s hockey team. Just days removed from their first Beanpot championship in 30 years, the Huskies had a long trip up to Burlington to face the streaking Vermont Catamounts.

It did not matter.

Although Northeastern blew a 3-1 third period lead, John Picking scored at the 1:57 mark of overtime and the Huskies picked up their first win in Hockey East play since January 20.

Cayden Primeau got the start in net for Northeastern (18-8-5, 12-6-3), making 32 saves on the evening. Sophomore netminder Stefanos Lekkas stopped 22 shots for the Catamounts (9-10-6, 6-10-5).

Despite the victory, the Huskies remain in third place in Hockey East due to Providence’s come-from-behind 5-2 victory over UMass Lowell.

As they have done all season, Northeastern used special teams to its advantage to take a 2-0 lead in the game’s first five minutes. Zach Solow scored a shorthanded goal at the 2:56 mark of the first period and Dylan Sikura answered with a power play strike at 4:58.

Vermont cut the deficit to one less than five minutes later when Bryce Misley fed Anthony Petruzzelli a pass in open ice that the senior roofed over Primeau.

Northeastern pushed its lead back to two goals on Adam Gaudette’s 32nd career power play goal midway through the second. The junior received a pass from Dylan Sikura in the slot and sent a shot past Lekkas. The tally broke the school record for career power play goals.

The Catamounts fought back in the third period, receiving a pair of power play goals from Ross Colton and Petruzzelli. Petruzzelli’s strike came with just 29 seconds remaining on a feed from Liam Coughlin behind the net.

Despite the Catamounts carrying the momentum heading into the extra frame, Picking scored the overtime winner after Patrick Schule sent a pass into the slot from below the net.

Northeastern and Vermont will play game two of the series tomorrow night at 7 p.m. WRBB will have complete coverage, with pregame beginning at 6:45 p.m.


UConn completes season sweep of No. 11 Northeastern with 4-2 win

By: Josh Brown

BOSTON – Connecticut entered this season 0-10-0 all time against Northeastern. But after defeating Northeastern 4-1 at the XL Center in late November, the Huskies from down south cut into that record a little bit more on Friday night.

UConn scored the game’s first three goals and were able to stave off a late Northeastern rally, winning 4-2 in front of 1,955 fans at Matthews Arena.

The win extends UConn’s (14-16-2, 10-11-1) win streak to six games and moves them into a tie for fifth place in Hockey East. For Northeastern (16-8-5, 11-6-3), the loss was made even more devastating by the fact that Boston College and Providence earned wins on Friday night. Northeastern now sits in third in Hockey East.

Tanner Creel continued his hot stretch in net for UConn, making 34 saves on the evening. Freshman goalie Cayden Primeau stopped 30 shots for Northeastern.

UConn scored two goals just 18 seconds apart beginning at the 4:52 mark of the second period. Spencer Naas extended his point streak to six games with a shot that beat Primeau five-hole and Benjamin Freeman deflected a Miles Gendron bid into the back of the net to give UConn a 2-0 lead.

The lead swelled to three when Maxim Letunox scored his 10th goal of the season at the 1:46 mark of the third period. With chaos ensuing in the Northeastern offensive zone, the junior calmly finished off an odd-man rush with a shot that sailed over Primeau’s shoulder.

Northeastern battled back midway through the third, scoring two goals just 4:31 apart. Nolan Stevens struck first, tapping in a Jeremy Davies shot that produced a rebound in front of the net. Adam Gaudette cut the deficit to one with 6:59 remaining in regulation, scoring on a weak-side feed from Nolan Stevens in transition.

Although Northeastern had an abundance of opportunities in the game’s final minutes, Corey Ronan sealed the deal with an empty net goal with two seconds remaining.

Northeastern will be back in action on Monday night when they take on Boston University in the championship game of the 66th Beanpot Tournament. Josh Brown, Joe Barbito and Christian Skroce will be on the call, with pregame coverage beginning at 7:15 p.m.


Primeau shutout leads No. 11 Northeastern past No. 18 Boston College in Beanpot semifinals

Photo courtesy of NHL.com

By: Josh Brown

BOSTON – In Cayden Primeau’s first Beanpot start, he accomplished a feat so rare that it has not been seen since 1988. He shutout Boston College on one of the first two Mondays in February.

The freshman goalie was sensational, making 37 saves in the Huskies’ 3-0 semifinals victory over Boston College on Monday afternoon at TD Garden. The win sends No. 11 Northeastern to the Beanpot championship game next Monday, where they will take on Boston University. It is the fourth time in the last six years that Northeastern will appear in the title game.

On the offensive end, it was three familiar faces who paced the Huskies (16-7-5, 11-5-3). After Dylan Sikura and Nolan Stevens scored in the first and second period respectively to put Northeastern out in front, Adam Gaudette put the exclamation point on the victory with his 20th goal of the season with 4:39 remaining in regulation.

The win gives the Huskies three straight Beanpot wins against Boston College for the first time in program history.

Sikura got the scoring going on the power play midway through the first period. Despite being challenged by a couple of BC defenders at the right circle, the senior fired a shot that deflected off the stick of BC defender Casey Fitzgerald and beat goalie Joe Woll (29 saves). The tally, which was assisted by Gaudette and Jeremy Davies, was the 50th of Sikura’s career.

Nolan Stevens gave the Huskies a two goal lead at the 15:34 mark of the second period on his 18th goal of the season. After Dylan Sikura fired a shot from the blue line that was saved by Woll, Stevens collected the rebound in front of the net and jammed it home.

The Eagles came out firing in the third period, throwing 15 shots on Primeau. Despite this, the game’s final goal came when Gaudette cleaned up a Stevens shot from the left dot.

Northeastern will be back in action on Friday night at Matthews Arena when they take on Connecticut. WRBB will have complete coverage, with pregame beginning at 6:45 p.m.


Tirone saves 40 shots as No. 11 Northeastern skates to 1-1 tie against UNH

By: Josh Brown

BOSTON – Despite firing 41 shots on New Hampshire goalie Danny Tirone, the No. 11 Northeastern men’s hockey team skated to a 1-1 tie against the Wildcats on Friday night at Matthews Arena.

The Huskies (15-7-5, 11-5-3) had more than their fair share of opportunities all night long, but besides a Nolan Stevens goal early in the second period, the Wildcats’ senior goalie made one acrobatic save after another to keep his team in the game.

The setback particularly stings for Northeastern, as a win would have launched them into a tie for first place in Hockey East with BC’s loss to UConn on Friday night. Instead, the Huskies sit one point behind the Eagles entering their Beanpot matchup on Monday night.

Freshman Cayden Primeau got the start in net for the Huskies, making 18 saves on the evening.

New Hampshire (9-13-5, 4-9-4) drew first blood at the 16:59 mark of the first period on a power play strike from freshman defenseman Max Gildon.

The Huskies responded quickly after intermission, as Nolan Stevens potted his 17th goal of the season just 55 seconds into the second period. After receiving the puck from Dylan Sikura at the top of the left circle, Stevens stickhandled through a pair of defenders and beat Tirone glove side to knot the score up at one.

Despite a flurry of opportunities for Northeastern in the third period and overtime, they could not crack Tirone. Adding to that frustration, Biagio Lerario was assessed a game-misconduct at the 13:04 mark of the third after throwing his helmet off the boards in protest of a blatant hit to the head that was not called.

The Huskies will be back in action on Monday night at 5 p.m. for the semifinals of the 66th Beanpot Tournament. WRBB will have complete coverage, with pregame beginning at 4:45 p.m.


Late Gaudette goal leads No. 8 Northeastern to 4-4 tie against No. 10 Providence

By: Josh Brown

BOSTON – If you are looking for a signature moment to cap off Adam Gaudette’s Hobey Baker resume, look no further than Friday night at Matthews Arena.

Down 4-3 with 40 seconds remaining in the third, Gaudette was left all alone at the left dot in the Northeastern offensive zone. In what looked like an almost effortless motion, fellow Hobey Baker nominee Dylan Sikura fed Gaudette with a one-time opportunity from atop the right circle that he fired past Providence goalie Hayden Hawkey.

Tie game.

Not only did Gaudette’s goal salvage a 4-4 tie for the Huskies, but with Boston College’s loss to UMass-Lowell the Huskies now own a share of first place in Hockey East.

The game-tying tally was Gaudette’s 19th goal of the season and fifth game-winning strike. Gaudette, who also had a goal at the 8:04 mark of the third, now has an NCAA leading six multi-goal games.

Cayden Primeau got the start in net for Northeastern (15-6-4, 11-4-2), making 29 saves on the evening. Hawkey, a fellow Montreal draft pick, saved 20 shots for the Friars (16-8-3, 9-5-3).

Although Northeastern carried the momentum early, Providence got on the board first courtesy of Scott Conway. At the 9:58 mark of the opening frame, Conway collected a rebound off a shot from Brandon Duhaime and jammed it past Primeau.

The Huskies responded on the power play with just 1:53 remaining in the period. After Gaudette forced the defense down low, he hit Davies with a one-timer at the point that beat Hawkey glove side.

The Friars tacked on two goals in the second period to take a 3-1 lead after 40 minutes. Conway scored his second of the game at the 17:49 mark on the power play and Ben Mirageas answered with one of his own 1:56 later.

Although the Huskies cut the deficit to 3-2 on Gaudette’s first goal of the night, Providence scored just 26 seconds later when Vimal Sukumaran drew Primeau out of his net on a breakaway opportunity and netted his seventh of the year at the 8:30 mark of the third.

Eric Williams helped Northeastern cut the deficit back to one less than three minutes later on his third goal of the year. Zach Solow won a faceoff at the left dot that was corralled by Matt Filipe. The sophomore dished the puck to a wide-open Williams, who took a couple strides back to the dot and beat Hawkey five-hole.

With the Huskies pressing in its offensive zone late in the third, Gaudette finished off the comeback with 40 seconds remaining.

Northeastern and Providence will meet again Saturday night at Schneider Arena in the rubber game of the series. WRBB will have complete coverage, with pregame beginning at 6:45 p.m.

Stevens hat trick lifts No. 8 Northeastern past Massachusetts

By: Josh Brown

BOSTON – For outside observers, Saturday night looked like a trap game for the No. 8 Northeastern men’s hockey team.

Not only did the Huskies have to endure a two-hour bus ride home after suffering a 3-0 loss to Massachusetts on Friday night, but they were without the services of Jeremy Davies (one-game suspension) and Grant Jozefek (upper-body injury).

It did not matter.

Dylan Sikura scored just 31 seconds into the game and Nolan Stevens recorded a hat trick as the Huskies cruised to a 5-0 win in front of 2,131 fans at Matthews Arena.

Freshman Cayden Primeau got the start in net for Northeastern (15-6-3, 11-4-1), making 19 saves on the evening.

The win moves Northeastern back in sole possession of first place in Hockey East. It is also the sixth consecutive home win for the Huntington Hounds.

After winning the opening faceoff, Stevens controlled the puck on the right-side boards in the Northeastern offensive zone. The captain dished a pass down to sophomore Biagio Lerario on the goal line, who found a cutting Sikura for the early tally.

Nolan Stevens pushed the Huskies’ lead to 2-0 just 46 seconds into the second period. With the puck loose in the neutral zone and a lot of open ice to skate, Stevens narrowly got around UMass defenseman Jake McLaughlin and used one hand to flip the puck over the outstretched glove of goalie Matt Murray (28 saves).

The goal was Stevens’ 100th career point at Northeastern.

Stevens recorded his 101st point at the 17:07 mark of the period, notching his second goal of the game on a snipe between the circles. After a receiving a pass from Sikura at the top of the left dot, Stevens walked untouched into the slot and placed the puck in the top left corner of the net.

Brandon Schultz scored his first career goal at the 8:34 mark of the third period on a weak-side feed from John Picking and Nolan Stevens completed the hat trick at 12:30 on a power play strike to put the game out of reach.

The Huskies will be back in action next weekend when they take on No. 10 Providence in a home-and-home series beginning in Matthews Arena on Friday night. WRBB will have complete coverage.

No. 10 Northeastern completes weekend sweep with 5-3 victory over No. 20 Maine

By: Josh Brown

BOSTON – Different day, same result.

Five different Huskies found the back of the net and freshman goaltender Cayden Primeau made 17 saves to lead No. 10 Northeastern to its second consecutive 5-3 win over No. 20 Maine.

The win improves Northeastern to 14-5-3 overall and 10-3-1 in Hockey East.

After sophomore Grant Jozefek scored the game’s first goal at the 5:10 mark of the opening period to give the Huskies the early lead, Maine (11-9-2, 5-6-1) netted a pair courtesy of Alexis Binner and Mitchell Fosiser.

Although Maine outshot Northeastern 9-8 in the second period, Eric Williams and Dylan Sikura found the back of the net to give the Huskies a 3-2 lead after 40 minutes.

Northeastern put the game away in the last five minutes of the third period, receiving goals from Brandon Hawkins (15:10) and Nolan Stevens (18:57). Maine forward Nolan Vesey scored on the man-advantage with 41 seconds remaining, but the comeback effort fell short.

The Huskies will be back in action next weekend when they take on UMass-Amherst in a home-and-home series beginning at the Mullins Center on Friday night. WRBB will have complete coverage.