GAUDREAU'S FOUR POINTS LIFT BOSTON COLLEGE PAST PROVIDENCE, 5-2
Junior forward Johnny Gaudreau tallies two goals and two assists for Eagles
CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. - No. 4 Boston College won its sixth-straight game over second-place Providence in dominating style, skating by the No. 6 Friars, 5-2, in front of a soldout Kelley Rink on Friday night. Junior Johnny Gaudreau headlined the night once again with a four-point performance while seniors Kevin Hayes and Bill Arnold notched their 100th-career point and 50th-career goal, respectively, in the victory.
The Eagles and Friars were tied, 2-2, after two periods of play before a three-goal final frame iced the game for Boston College. Senior Patrick Brown, in his 100th-career contest, notched the game-winning power play goal 37 seconds into the third period.
Sophomore defenseman Michael Matheson churned out his biggest night of the season offensively, registering a playmaker (three assists) while Hayes also recorded a three-point night with an empty net goal and a pair of helpers.
Third-year backstopper Brian Billett picked up his 10th win of the year with 26 stops as the Eagles outshot PC, 31-28.
Additionally, the Eagles special teams unit was successful on both ends. BC converted on two of its six opportunities and denied the Friars four power play chances.
BC nearly had three power play goals as its first tally came two seconds after the first infraction of the game at 7:29 of the first period.
Gaudreau worked the puck out of the corner to Hayes just above the slot. Hayes shifted to Matheson on the left dot, where the puck worked its way puck to the point, back down to Gaudreau on the near post. Hayes linked up with Gaudreau for the quick one-timer to draw first blood.
Providence knotted it up after winning a draw in its own zone. Stefan Demopoulos dumped it in behind Billett where Ross Mauermann hustled back to retrieve. Shane Luke parked himself on the crease and Mauermann snuck it to the front of the net and Luke chipped it over Billett's shoulder to make 1-1 at 15:31 of the first stanza.
Providence grabbed its first lead of the contest at 13:51 of the second frame similar to the Eagles' initial strike.
Just as Matheson's interference call expired, Derek Army flew in from the blue line and batted in a crisp one-timer pass from Nick Saracino in the far corner. Army hit the puck in the right spot and scored, diving to the ice to give the Friars a 2-1 lead.
A couple exchanges later, Gaudreau drew a cross-checking call on Steven Shamanski in front of the net to give the Eagles their third power play chance of the game. Just under a minute later, Arnold cashed in at 16:37 to tie it up once again, 2-2.
Matheson quarterbacked the play from the top of the circle and swung it wide to Gaudreau just below the right dot. Arnold positioned himself on the crease and Gaudreau needled a perfect pass to his tape for tap-in tally.
Just as the second period was coming to a close, the Friars were whistled for too many men with 12 seconds on the clock. The Eagles took advantage 37 seconds into the third frame to recapture the one-goal lead.
Matheson triggered the scoring play for the third-straight BC tally, scooting the puck up the Hayes on the blue line. With extra real estate, Hayes blasted a shot into traffic and Brown positioned his stick perfectly to redirect the puck below Gillies' blocker for 3-2 lead on the power play strike.
Gaudreau sealed Providence's fate late in the third on a successful forecheck.
As the Friars were trying to clear, Gaudreau slipped through the transition and raced towards Gillies by himself. Gaudreau tried once in close, but the puck quickly caromed back out to the crease. With minimal room, Gaudreau collected his own rebound and beat Gillies five hole at 17:50 to make it a two-goal affair, 4-2.
Hayes iced it, scoring his 100th-career point, with an empty netter from deep in BC's end. Gaudreau picked up his fourth assist by shoveling out of the corner to Hayes who lobbed it half the sheet into the net at 19:01 to seal the 5-2 triumph.
The Eagles will hit the road for an early evening matinee at Brown tomorrow night. Saturday's puck drop at Meehan Auditorium is scheduled for 5 p.m.