PITTSBURGH - No. 7 Boston College claimed its first trophy of the season in overpowering fashion, throttling first-time opponent Penn State, 8-2, in the championship game of the Three Rivers Classic on Saturday evening at CONSOL Energy Center.
Six multi-point performances were highlighted by junior Destry Straight's hat trick, the first three-goal performance for the Eagles this season.
Junior Johnny Gaudreau was named the Three Rivers Classic Tournament MVP after a five-point performance over the course of both contests with a pair of goals and three assists while seniors Kevin Hayes (1-3-4) and Bill Arnold joined Gaudreau on the All-Tournament Team.
Moreover, Gaudreau broke an already impressive career feat, surpassing his old total and setting a new benchmark, scoring at least one point in his last 13 outings. The Carneys Point, N.J., native has accounted for 25 points (12-13-25) throughout the course of his hot spell. In seven of those 13 games, Gaudreau has attained a multi-point performance.
Ryan Fitzgerald, Danny Linell, Michael Sit, Hayes and Gaudreau joined Straight in the goal scoring column while 13 Eagles combined recorded at least one point in the victory. Fitzgerald (1-2-3) and Austin Cangelosi (0-3-3) both turned in three-point performances.
Junior Brian Billett followed up his shutout with another outstanding performance, stopping31-of-32 Penn State opportunities. Classmate Brad Barone cleaned up the last 6:27 and surrendered one goal. After PSU's Matthew Skoff surrendered five goals one 25 shots, PJ Musico was throw in and let up three tallies on eight BC attempts. Shots were even on the night, 33 apiece.
After Penn State's Casey Bailey scored the game's first goal at 4:46 of the opening frame, the rest of the contest was all Boston College.
After killing off a Chris Calnan hooking call at 12:33, the Eagles picked up their first power play of the night and Fitzgerald capitalized halfway in at 18:12. Linell quarterbacked the play from the point and deferred down to Cangelosi on the right dot. Cangelosi corralled the pass and sent it to the crease where Fitzgerald crashed the net and beat Skoff five-hole to tie it up, 1-1.
Thirty-three seconds later, Hayes took advantage of a poorly-positioned Skoff to give the Eagles the lead heading into the first intermission.
Gaudreau generated the play with some sturdy forechecking and hammered the puck behind the net to Bill Arnold. Hayes recognized Skoff was off kilter and Arnold hit him with a perfect dish to make a 2-1 BC lead at 18:45 of the first frame.
The Eagles killed off a Travis Jeke cross-check at 3:48 of the second period and Boston College made it a two-goal game shortly after.
Cangelosi poked Fitzgerald's draw up to Straight on the blue line. Straight smashed it into traffic from the point. Fitzgerald crashed the net, much like his first tally, but Skoff was able to make the stop. The puck kicked off of his right pad and Straight roofed the rebound in the crease to give the Eagles a 3-1 advantage at 6:26 of the second stanza.
Straight kept his foot on the gas and netted his second at 10:57. Fitzgerald linked up with Isaac MacLeod at the top of the left zone and MacLeod threw at the crease where Straight redirected it past Skoff for the three-goal cushion, 4-1.
At 12:36 of the middle session, Gaudreau scored his 15th of the season in highlight-reel fashion. Hayes pilfered the puck off of a Nittany Lion outlet attempt and immediately threw it in Gaudreau's direction coming down the slot. With ample time, Gaudreau triple deked Skoff and easily put it to the back of the net on the forehand to give the Eagles a comfortable 5-1 cushion heading into the second intermission.
After and early BC power play to start the third, Linell cashed in on the Eagles' second power play of the night to make it a 6-1 affair.
PSU's David Goodwin was cited for hooking at 2:25 and the Eagles power play went to work. Patrick Brown and Cangelosi worked the play, creating room for Linell to let loose a slap shot from the right circle. Brown worked his way around and set a perfect screen on Musico to aid Linell's blast to the back of the cage.
Shortly after Linell's slap shot lit the lamp, Straight and Sit followed suit.
Straight capped the hat trick by going coast-to-coast, walking into the Nittany Lions' end and firing a blast short side on Musico. Teddy Doherty squirted the puck out to Straight in front of BC's crease to initialize the 7-1 lead.
Before David Goodwin added PSU's second tally late in the third at 17:27, Sit capped BC's offensive outburst with help fromTravis Jeke and Quinn Smith at 13:51.
Smith worked the puck off the wall to Jeke in the slot. Jeke got some lumber on it, setting up Sit for the tear to back of the net to ice Boston College's 8-2 triumph.
Boston College will enter the New Year and take its game outside, welcoming Notre Dame to venerable Fenway Park for the Citi Frozen Fenway event on Saturday, Jan. 4. Game time is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. Saturday's event marks the third time in Boston College will have played at Fenway Park. The Eagles suffered a 3-2 setback against BU on Jan. 8, 2010, it their first time at Fenway before defeating Northeastern, 2-1, on Jan. 14, 2012.
Johnny Gaudreau (2G - 3A - 5 PTS)
BC ALL-TOURNAMENT TEAM
F: Johnny Gaudreau (2G - 3A - 5 PTS)
F: Kevin Hayes (1G - 3A - 4 PTS)
F: Bill Arnold (0G - 3A - 3 PTS)
- Johnny Gaudreau has broken his old point streak of 12 games he posted last season, spanning from Oct. 13 to Nov. 30, 2012, and has now scored at least one point in his last 13 games. Gaudreau's current point streak commenced on Nov. 1, 2013, and he has scored 25 points during that time, with 12 goals and 13 assists. Throughout that tear, Gaudreau has accounted for seven multi-point games. In 97 career games, Gaudreau is tied for 44th all-time in the BC annals for career points (128) and tied for 42nd in goals scored (57). With his assist tonight, Gaudreau also cracked the top 50 list in career assists, tying Ed Kenty (1970-73) for 50th all-time.
- Destry Straight scored Boston College's first hat trick of the season and first first since Steven Whitney turned the trick against Northeastern on Jan. 18, 2013. The hat trick not only counts for a career high in points scored in one game, his first tally of the night stands as his third-career game-winning goal.
- Austin Cangelosi's playmaker (three assists) marks the third of BC's kind this season. Bill Arnold turned the trick against Army on Nov. 10, 2013, while Adam Gilmour did the same on Nov. 18, 2013, against Wisconsin.
- Boston College broke its seven-game scoring drought on the power play, and lit the lamp twice with the extra skater. It marks the first time BC's has done that since scoring three PPGs against Army on Nov. 10. The Eagles also scored two power play markers against RPI on Oct. 13.
- Boston College scored 13 goals over the course of two games of the Three Rivers Classic, outscoring all three other squads combined. Penn State, Bowling Green and Robert Morris combined for 12 goals in six games amongst themselves.
- Five of the BC's six defensemen in the lineup scored a goal this weekend (Michael Matheson, Scott Savage, Danny Linell, Travis and Teddy Doherty) while Isaac MacLeod also found the scoring sheet with an assist in Saturday's win over Penn State.
- Travis Jeke has skated in two games this season. In two games in front of his hometown crowd, he recorded a point in both games, logging a goal and an assist against BGSU along with another helper against PSU.
- Boston College has already defeated three teams (Penn State, Army, Wisconsin) by six goals or more this season. The last time an Eagles' squad turned in that many dominant performances of a six-goal margin of victory (or more) was when BC defeated five teams of that nature on its way to the national championship during the course of the 2009-10 season.