The Boston College Eagles earned their fourth straight Beanpot Championship
BOSTON - Steven Whitney's three points, including the game-winning goal late in the second period, proved to be the difference as the Eagles defeated Northeastern 6-3 to capture their fourth consecutive and 18th overall Beanpot title.
Johnny Gaudreau tallied two goals and an assist while Parker Milner stopped 20 shots to improve to 17-6-2. Chris Rawlings made 24 saves for the Huskies to fall to 8-9-1 on the season.
"I am so incredibly proud of our club but specifically our senior class and our captains. They are model citizens for BC hockey," said head coach Jerry York.
Quinn Smith appeared to have given the Eagles an early lead at the 2:15 mark as his stuff attempt was whistled down before the puck crossed the goal line. Bill Arnold claimed the Eagles best bid of the first stanza as he rang the crossbar over the shoulder of Rawlings with just under eight minutes to play.
The Eagles couldn't convert on three power play opportunities as the teams battled through a scoreless first period. BC held a 10-5 advantage in shots after 20 minutes of play.
BC looked poised to take the lead early in the second as an Isaac MacLeod wrister caught the post on Rawlings' glove side just four minutes in. Pat Mullane's redirect of a Patrick Wey point shot struck the cross bar at the 10 minute mark as the Eagles began to storm the Huskies goal.
Bill Arnold's 11th goal of the season finally broke the deadlock as he one-timed a feed from Kevin Hayes to put the Eagles up 1-0 at 10:53.
Johnny Gaudreau tacked on another goal just 1:15 later as he stuffed a goal mouth drive under the pad of Rawlings to give BC a 2-0 lead. The goal was Gaudreau's 14th of the season and third career Beanpot goal.
The Huskies cut the deficit in half just three minutes later as Kevin Roy beat Milner on a wrister from the top of the slot for his fourth goal of the tournament. Roy had a clear breakaway on the next shift but his backhand deke was denied by Milner's glove to keep the BC lead at 2-1.
With the period winding down, the Eagles got insurance as Patrick Brown deflected MacLeod's point shot just over the goal line for his fourth goal of the season at 18:37. BC wasn't finished as Steven Whitney (18th) buried a rebound of his own shot with just .4 seconds remaining to give the Eagles a 4-1 lead heading into the locker room.
"For our seniors, we are all so excited. This is awesome for us, and it's awesome that we all did it together," said Whitney.
Roy's fifth goal of the tournament and second goal of the game cut the BC lead to 4-2 just 11 seconds into the third period. The Huskies inched closer as Vinny Saponari's one-timer deflected off of Braden Pimm past Milner at 3:56.
"There was no negativity on the bench and I think that's what has made us successful over the past few years," said Eagles captain Pat Mullane. "I think it's a testament to the guys in the locker room. It starts at the top with our coaching staff."
Gaudreau's second goal of the game at 14:37 sealed it for the Eagles as he one-timed a feed from Michael Matheson to put BC up 5-3.
Mullane added an empty netter, his 13th goal of the season, to conclude the scoring. Final shots on goal were 30-23 in favor of BC.
Team Records: Northeastern 8-14-3; Boston College 17-7-2
Game Notes: With their victory Boston College improves to 73-49 in the Beanpot (18th championship), Coach Jerry York improves to 26-12 (7th championship) and BC's senior class becomes the first class to go 8-0 and win four consecutive Beanpot titles... The Eagles improve to 33-9 against Northeastern in the Beanpot... Milner won the Eberly Award for having the best save percentage in the tournament (.907)... Milner is now eighth all-time in career save percentage in the Beanpot (.930)... BC scored first in seven of its last eight Beanpot games (7-0, 13-0-2 when scoring first this year)... Northeastern's Kevin Roy was named the Most Valuable Player of the tournament (5 goals in two games) and is the first person to be named MVP who did not play for the championship team since BU's Sean Fields in 2004... With his goal and two assists tonight, Whitney has tallied at least one point in seven of his eight Beanpot games (6-6-12)... Milner recorded the third assist of his career on BC's final goal.