Freshman Gaudreau Stays Hot for BC
by Joshua Seguin/CHN Reporter
DURHAM, N.H. As Boston College has started its season 3-1-0, it's been a rookie guiding the Eagles offense in a pair of its victories. Coming off an impressive performance at the Ice Breaker Invitational in Grand Forks, N.D., winger Johnny Gaudreau impressed again in his second weekend as a college hockey player.
Originally a commit to BC's crosstown rival Northeastern, Johnny was released from his commitment at Northeastern over the summer, amid the program's coaching chancges. Johnny then committed to Boston College over a number of other suitors.
"I committed to Northeastern when I was really young," Gaudreau said. "I was 16, and they were the only Hockey East school I had talked to. Northeastern gave me the chance, and I took it because I thought at [5-foot-8] I may not get another chance at one of these. When all three coaches left at Northeastern, I was let go of my commitment. Boston College was one of the first schools to call. I visited, they like small players so I felt it was the right fit."
In committing to Boston College, Gaudreau has instantly improved a team, which was already loaded with experienced, skilled players.
Even though the freshman has put up impressive numbers, BC coach Jerry York knows there is still work to be done in making him a great player.
When speaking of Johnny's performance Saturday night and on the season Coach Jerry York said, "He is a really good player. He is learning to adjust to this level. He certainly has the skill to put points on the board, but he has some work to do on some other aspects of his game."
Putting points on the board has been exactly what Gaudreau has done. In four games for the Eagles this season, he has scored twice and assisted on four others.
Gaudreau said, "I have been placed on a line with great players. I play with Pat Mullane and Steven Whitney. They have taught me a lot and I'm still learning the game — the team I am on helps a lot as well."
On Saturday night, in front of a sellout crowd at the Whittemore Center, the freshman put on another show by adding a goal and an assist to his season totals. A knack for finding the right guy in key situations has seemingly been the key for Gaudreau's success in the early going of the season.
His goal on Saturday was the final in an onslaught of five that the Eagles dropped on New Hampshire.
His assist was a beautiful feed to the point to Tommy Cross, whose shot found Bill Arnold's stick and, eventually, the net.
Even though his performance against New Hampshire tonight may have been what most freshman hockey player's dream of, his performance against North Dakota last Saturday night was even more impressive.
Gaudreau, against a perennial power in North Dakota, scored four points on a goal and three assists.
Gaudreau said, "I am pretty excited to put some points on the board, but the team is winning and that is all that matters."
With six points in his first four games, many believe that Johnny Gaudreau has the potential of being another of the great Boston College diminutive dynamos. In the first two weeks of the season, his impressive feeds to open linemates and knack for finishing in the dirty areas of the ice has made believers out of many doubters.
As a freshman skater who has been impressive against two college hockey powers, in New Hampshire and North Dakota, Johnny has proven that small guys can be successful in college hockey — as if BC's previous skaters hadn't already done that.