Roundup: BC's 4-Goal Rally Stuns PC
McManus Gets 3 for Gophers; Union Still Winless
CHN Staff Report
Hockey game's aren't divided into halves. Sometimes, it just seems that way.
For the first portion of Sunday's Hockey East game at Schneider Arena, Providence looked like a team every bit the national contender people think PC can be. For the latter stage, the Friars seem to forget who they are.
"We didn't play to our identity," PC coach Nate Leaman said.
Boston College took advantage of the Friars' every mistake and eventually completed a full turnaround, defeating PC, 4-3, in overtime after trailing, 3-0, in the second period.
"All of a sudden, we're down, 3-0, in the second period," BC coach Jerry York said. "That's what I'm most proud of. To come back from that deficit speaks volumes for my feelings about this particular team."
The win is BC's first of the 2017-18 season. This was the first time since the 1996-97 season that the Eagles failed to win either of their first two games of a season.
Casey Fitzgerald completed the Eagles' comeback with his game-winning goal at 1:09 of the overtime. It was his second goal of the game — his first came at 10:26 of the second period and cut the PC lead to 3-2.
"These type of games can go either way," York said. "In the OT, we get a 3 on 2, lose the puck, and Casey was up following the play and rings it off the post and in."
PC led the game, 3-0, at 5:16 of the second period on goals from Shane Kavanagh, Spenser Young and Brandon Duhaime. The Friars carried play through the opening stages and appeared set to cruise to victory.
Christopher Grando scored his second goal in as many games at 7:29 of the second period to get BC on the board and start the Eagles' rally. Graham McPhee got the equalizer for the Eagles at 3:47 of the third period.
BC goaltender Joe Woll made 31 saves for the Eagles, including 10 in the final period.
Leaman saw some things getting away from his team even as its lead mounted.
"We turned pucks over again and again and again tonight," he said. "Even though we talked about it between periods, we kept making the same mistakes. That's the first. Can we adjust? Can we change things throughout a game? That was kind of disappointing."
Minnesota 6, Penn State 3
When it comes to Minnesota freshmen, Casey Mittelstadt has drawn all the early buzz. Being drafted in the top 10 of the NHL Draft will do that.
However, it was another freshman carrying the Golden Gophers to an important win Sunday afternoon. Freshman Brannon McManus scored three third-period goals and picked up the first hat trick of his young career as Minnesota downed Penn State, 6-3, Sunday afternoon in Minneapolis.
McManus' first goal came just 1:43 into the third period and extended Minnesota's lead to 4-2. He added another and 8:12 and sealed the win at 16:09.
Mittelstadt got the Gophers on the board first, scoring his second goal of the season at 13:34 of the opening period. Brent Gates Jr. doubled Minnesota's lead with just 43 seconds left to play in the first.
PSU would get a pair back in the second period, as Alec Marsh and Andrew Sturtz scored. However, a Sam Rossini shorthanded goal between the two PSU markers kept the Gophers ahead as the third began.
Minnesota controlled play throughout the game, keeping the agressive Nittany Lions from piling up their typically high shot total. The Gophers outshot Minnesota, 32-26.
The teams split their two games this weekend, with PSU claiming a 3-1 win Friday night. They won't meet again until the final weekend of the season in a pair of games in Happy Valley that may well decide the Big Ten's regular-season title.
Vermont 3, Union 2
No matter how it happens, the results have been the same all five times for Union this season. The Dutchmen lost their fifth straight game to open the 2017-18 season Sunday afternoon, falling, 3-2, to Vermont at Achilles Arena.
"It was better (early in the game)," Union coach Rick Bennett said. "The hunger was there, but we're still way off from 60 minutes. They did come out with a sense of urgency."
UVM's Matt O'Donnell scored at 9:56 of the third period to give UVM a 3-1 lead. The goal would become the game-winner after Brett Supinski got Union back within one at 19:47 of the third period with his third goal of the season.
This is the first time Union has lost five straight to start a season since 1999-00 when current UVM coach Kevin Sneddon was running things in Schenectady.