CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. - Nine different Boston College players recorded one point and senior goaltender Parker Milner registered 24 saves as the fifth-ranked Eagles held off a late rally by Vermont to secure a 4-2 Hockey East quarterfinal victory in front of 3,213 fans at Kelley Rink.
Boston College scored each of the game's first three goals and took a 3-0 lead into the third period. Vermont tallied two third-period goals to pull within one - at 3-2 - before sophomore forward Johnny Gaudreau's empty netter at 18:58 of the final frame gave the Eagles a 4-2 victory.
Senior forward Brooks Dyroff opened the scoring at 14:47 of the first period with his second career goal, scooping up his own rebound and lifting the puck into the top corner of the net.
The Eagles took a 2-0 lead at 9:13 of the middle stanza with a power-play goal from freshman defenseman Michael Matheson and sophomore forward Cam Spiro widened the lead to 3-0 with his second career goal at 13:04 to give the Eagles a 3-0 lead after two periods.
Ben Albertson got the Catamounts on the board just five minutes into the third period and Matt White trimmed the BC lead to 3-2 with a shorthanded breakaway goal over Milner's stick-side shoulder at 12:37 to conclude the scoring for the Catamounts.
Gaudreau secured the victory with an empty-net tally - his 40th career goal - with just more than one minute to play.
Boston College went 1-4 on the power play while Vermont was scoreless on seven power-play chances.
Vermont freshman goaltender Brody Hoffman stopped 23 shots in 58:44. He falls to 11-18-6.
Milner improves to 21-9-4 on the season and 63-18-5 in his career.
BC and Vermont will face off for game two of the best-of-three-game league quarterfinal series on Saturday, March 16 at 7 p.m.
Team Records: Vermont 11-18-6; Boston College 21-10-4
Game Notes: BC improved to 11-for-11 on the penalty kill in its last two games ... BC's six seniors improve to 13-0 in Hockey East Tournament competition ... Senior defenseman Patch Alber returned to action for the first time since injuring his knee prior to Boston College's 5-3 victory over Alabama-Huntsville on Saturday, Dec. 29. The senior missed 20 games.