BURLINGTON, Vt. – Vermont freshman Brayden Irwin (Toronto, Ontario) recorded a career high two goals and one assist for three points to lead the 14th-ranked Catamounts to a weekend sweep over No. 7 Boston College with a 4-2 victory in front of the 51st straight sellout crowd of 4,003 at Gutterson Fieldhouse on Saturday night. Junior co-captain Torrey Mitchell (Greenfield Park, Quebec) and freshman Vitkor Stålberg (Gothenburg, Sweden) also added goals as the Catamounts improved to 14-8-2 overall and 9-4-2 in Hockey East. The Eagles fall to 12-8-1 and 9-6-1 in the league with the loss.
“This was a total team effort tonight and certainly all weekend,” Vermont head coach Sneddon said. “This was a big confidence boost for us and we can enjoy it this weekend but we have a big task going down to Merrimack next week. Our fans were phenomenal this weekend and certainly gave us that lift when we needed it.”
The Catamounts took a 1-0 lead at 5:35 of the first period when Irwin scored his third goal of the season. Senior defenseman Ryan Gunderson (Bensalem, Pa.) sent in a drive from the right point and Irwin was in front to deflect the puck past BC junior goalie Cory Schneider. Stålberg also assisted on the play.
Mitchell gave Vermont a 2-0 advantage with a sensational move on a breakaway with just 23 seconds left in the opening period. Irwin blocked a Boston College shot in the Vermont zone and the puck went out to center ice. Mitchell gained control of the puck and beat the BC defense down the ice to record his 10th goal of the season.
Vermont opened up a 3-0 lead at 6:53 of the second period when Irwin scored his second goal of the game this time on the power play. Mitchell fired a shot from point that hit the post and Irwin battled in front to knock in the rebound. Senior co-captain Kenny Macaulay (Baddeck, Nova Scotia) also assisted.
Boston College responded at 7:51 of the second period when freshman Ben Smith struck for the Eagles to make it a 3-1 game.
The Eagles pulled within 3-2 on a goal by sophomore Brock Bradford just 19 seconds into the third period.
BC would get no closer as UVM junior goalie Joe Fallon (Bemidji, Minn.) made 27 saves including eight stops in the third period. Stålberg added an empty-netter with three seconds remaining to seal the 4-2 victory. It was his fifth goal of the season.
Schneider made 14 stops in the loss for the Eagles. UVM went 1-for-4 on the power play and BC was 0-for-4.
Vermont returns to action next weekend when the Catamounts visit Merrimack on Friday (Jan. 26) and Saturday (Jan. 27). Both games at the Volpe Athletic Center start at 7:00pm. Vermont won this season's first meeting with a 4-1 victory at Gutterson Fieldhouse on Nov. 18.
GAME NOTES: Vermont is winning or has won the season series against eight of nine Hockey East opponents so far this season ... UVM is 7-6 against ranked teams this year ... This weekend marked the first home sweep in a series for Vermont since taking two games against Northeastern on Jan. 13 and Jan. 14 last season ... UVM 12-2-2 when scoring first this season ... Tonight’s game was televised on CN8 and marked the 12th time this season the Catamounts have been on TV.