Minnesota and Boston College would get it on at Mariucci Arena on Sunday in a game that was as rare as a blue moon in terms of when it was played. Someone seemingly had to win in regulation after the teams tied on Friday night. Adam Wilcox and Brian Billett would get the nods in net for the Gophers and Eagles respectively.
The first shot of the game came for Minnesota’s Sam Warning at 0:31 into the first period, but the Gophers couldn’t sustain much of a rush to keep BC on their toes. As the first few minutes wore on, each team not only had possession of pucks, but neither team was taking stupid penalties (I’ve heard the term can be called “ticky-tack”) that are famous for putting a team a man down.
At 4:14 of the first, Minnesota’s Nate Condon scored the game’s opening goal on even strength with assists going to Justin Kloos and Taylor Cammarata. The goal light turned on again at 5:10 for the Gophers as Seth Ambroz lit it on even strength, with the lone assist on the goal going to Christian Isackson.
Simply put, Boston College wasn’t able to get much going in the early going, as the Eagles only had three shots on goal. At 6:59, Boston College got a power play when Travis Boyd was assessed a holding minor, but no penalty flag was seen on the two hundred by one hundred foot surface. I digress…
Even a fortuitous bounce out in the low slot area kept the Eagles off the board during the two-minute power play, but BC managed two shots on goal during that time. At 10:16, Minnesota’s Mike Reilly put BC in a three goal hole on even strength. Hudson Fasching was credited with an assist on the even strength goal as was Sam Warning.
At 11:20, BC’s Ian McCoshen was given a minor for tripping, giving Minnesota a power play they really didn’t “need” seeing as Minnesota was up three goals. After the power play was over, Minnesota was actually down in shots by a 10-6 count, but if ten shots don’t go on net, that statistic is meaningless.
At 16:20, Minnesota seemingly put the game out of reach when Brady Skjei put the fourth goal in the net. Tom Serratore and Seth Ambroz assisted on what was Skjei’s first goal in forty games. BC’s night was made worse when Isaac MacLeod would go for a cross checking minor at 16:51, giving the Gophers another power play. Minnesota couldn’t give its student section Culver’s (for scoring five goals) in the process of the power play, and the Gophers were also kept off the board in the final minute of play/
As the first period wore down to a bitter end, the mood on the Boston College bench was a somber one, as Jerry York’s Eagles were down four after twenty minutes.
The first four minutes of the second period netted one official shot on goal for the Gophers, but at 6:02, Boston College’s Evan Richardson put the Eagles on the board off of a bad Gopher turnover. Quinn Smith had an assist on the effort as did Isaac MacLeod. Minnesota's Travis Boyd also took a penalty at 6:02 for slashing, adding insult to injury that’s only cured by a successful penalty kill.
That successful PK is exactly what the Gophers got, keeping the score at 4-1 with twenty-eight minutes gone. At the 9:44 mark, BC's Mike Matheson would be taken to the penalty box on a slashing minor which gave the Gophers a chance to work on the power play.
The power play would end without a goal on the board, but it was clear that the Gophers were looking for more. At 12:56, Minnesota's Vinni Lettieri would go off for a slashing minor, which gave BC a chance to make the game interesting. At the 14:53 mark, BC's Austin Cangelosi was charged with holding the stick which gave Minnesota a 1:57 power play to work with.
Shots were eighteen apiece as the second period had 3:43 left in it, but the main point was that Boston College couldn't put the puck past Adam Wilcox, try as it might. At the 17:33 mark, Minnesota's Brady Skjei would be assessed a two-minute minor for interference.
Through forty minutes, the score was 4-1 Minnesota, and shots had each team at twenty-one apiece.
The first couple of minutes in the third period didn't do BC any favors although the Eagles were up 6-0 in shots to start the period. At 5:16 of the third period, Minnesota's Michael Brodzinski tallied the Gophers' fifth goal on even strength. Nate Condon and Justin Kloos would assist. At 5:16, BC's Kevin Hayes was also assessed a two-minute minor for high sticking.
Hayes returned to the ice while his BC teammates were able to return to full strength without allowing another goal on the board. Minnesota's Jake Bischoff would tally an even strength goal at 9:30 of the third, giving the Gophers a 6-1 lead and a mountain that BC was unable to climb out of. Bischoff's first goal as a Gopher had assists from Sam Warning and Kyle Rau.
At 10:30, Minnesota's Justin Kloos would be called for slashing, and it gave BC a power play (which they had struggled on to that point in the game). The ensuing power play for the Eagles came up empty despite one effort right on the doorstep of goal.
At 12:44, BC's Mike Matheson would get five minutes for charging after hauling down Nate Condon awkwardly as Condon was breaking in on goal. Minnesota would receive a roughing minor as Seth Ambroz would sit in the box at 17:47.
Down the stretch, Minnesota's goaltending would bring them success as the Gophers went 1-0-1 on the weekend. Shots finished even at thirty-two apiece.
The Gophers are off for a week before Notre Dame comes to Mariucci Arena.
Geoff Discher is Examiner.com's Minnesota Golden Gophers Hockey Examiner as well as the National College Hockey Examiner. Leave a comment below, or feel free to reach him at Disch61@hotmail.com with comments, story ideas, or any general talk surrounding college hockey. You can find him on Facebook as well by clicking here as well as here and joining the conversation from the social media side as well. He's always chock full of fact and opinion. I’m also on Twitter @Disch_InTheVOX.
Until next time, I’ll see you at the rink!