Notre Dame Snaps BC's 19-Game Unbeaten Streak
Providence Sweeps Maine; Hockey East Pairings Set
CHN Staff Report
Notre Dame's Vince Hinostroza scored 1:56 into overtime to give his team a 2-1 win over Boston College, and snapping the Eagles' 19-game unbeaten streak.
The win was huge for Notre Dame, which had been sitting right on the Pairwise bubble, but moved up to No. 11. And it showed that someone can actually defeat Boston College, which was becoming very questionable.
"I doubt seriously that we impacted their confidence very much," said Irish coach Jeff Jackson to ESPN.com. "It's just the way we have to play. Against any opponent, but especially against a team of that caliber, if we're real smart, play in control, and do a good job with the puck, that's a big part not allowing them to play their transition game."
Hinostroza's shot from the high slot deflected off a Boston College forward’s stick up in the air and over goaltender Thatcher Demko’s shoulder for the victory.
Boston College got its lone goal from Hobey Baker candidate Johnny Gaudreau, who scored on the power play the second period, his 30th of the season.
"The thing I admire about (Gaudreau) is he's got all the skills, and all the tools, the skating. He's got all that, and the instincts for the game," Jackson told ESPN.com. "But I like his edge, his competitiveness. He's not the biggest cat in the world, but I tell you what, he plays big. So you add that with his skill set, and his instincts, it's a pretty dangerous combination."
Elsewhere in Hockey East
A great start to the season was followed by a 2-7-3 stretch that threatened to derail all Providence had accomplished this season. But after a weekend sweep of Maine, the Friars now have a four-game winning streak, and finished the Hockey East regular season in third place, earning a bye for the first round of the playoffs and moving into the Top 10 of the Pairwise.
Jon Gillies had some un-Gillies-like games during that rough stretch, but he was back to his All-American-like self this weekend. Saturday, he made 35 stops for the win.
Specialty teams proved pivotal for the Friars as they netted a short-handed goal, a power-play tally and successfully killed off a five-on-three for Maine.
"(I'm) very proud of the team," Providence coach Nate Leaman said on his twitter feed. "They deserve all the credit. Through struggles they decided not to feel sorry for themselves, but to work harder."
Maine's losses, coming at home, where it had been rock solid all season, were relatively devastating. It dropped the Black Bears to sixth, which means a one-game playoff against Merrimack next weekend, and sent them sliding down the Pairwise.
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Senior forward Kevin Goumas had four points and Casey DeSmith made 49 saves as New Hampshire a 5-2 win at Merrimack, despite getting outshot 51-21.
"They were taking it to us early in the game, but I thought the guys in the middle of the second period battled back and turned it on and made a game of it," UNH coach Dick Umile said.
New Hampshire earned home ice for the Hockey East quarterfinals thanks to Northeastern's loss to Boston University. UNH will host Northeastern.
"We haven't had home ice in a while now the last couple years — and we have the weekend off, and some of our guys can use that," Umile said.
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Matt Lane scored two goals and Matt O'Connor had 39 saves to lead Boston University to a weekend sweep of Northeastern.
Braden Pimm and Zach Aston-Reese scored for the Huskies, who outshot the Terriers 41-21 in the game.
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Vermont responded to Friday's loss to earn a split of the weekend with Massachusetts-Lowell, winning 3-2.
"We played hard for 60 minutes tonight, physical; it was a grind," Vermont coach Kevin Sneddon said. "They're an excellent team and we feel fortunate to come out with the win."