Saturday, March 24, 2012

Eagles get past Air Force to move within one game of Frozen Four

It wasn't all that easy but in the end, the Boston College Eagles got within one game of making their fifth frozen four appearance in the last six years with a 2-0 win over the Air Force Falcons. The Eagles were led by star forward Chris Kreider who had both goals, one in the first and one late in the third. The Eagles came out of the gate pretty fast as the Falcons seemed to be a little surprised with all of the speed BC has and just eight minutes into the game, Kevin Hayes made a great pass to Kreider who knocked it in to make it 1-0 Eagles. After that goal, Air Force did a great job of limiting BC's grade A offensive chances and odd man rushes. Towards the end of the first, Air Force made a furious run at Parker Milner but like he always does, Parker stood on his head and kept Air Force off the board. I thought the second period was BC's best period of the game as the Eagles seemed to have the puck in the Falcon end 90% of the time but just weren't able to convert thanks to great defense and goaltending from Air Force. While Air Force played great defense, they really couldn't get anything going against the BC defense. I thought Brian Dumoulin and Tommy Cross both did a great job of starting the breakout once the Falcons got any kind of pressure on Parker Milner. Yes, it's only two goals and we only won by that same margin but I don't think it's fair to say "Well, BC should have won 10-0" and "This is not a good sign". In this tournament, there is only one thing that matters and that is you win or go home. BC didn't play great but they won and that's all that matters. I think the main reason BC didn't get too many offensive chances is because Air Force did a great job of collapsing down in their own end and stopping BC's cycling game, something that is crucial in stopping the Eagles. Anyways, I thought the Kreider-Hayes-Straight line was the best on the ice for the Eagles. Kevin Hayes earned my player of the game as he definitely played one of his best games in quite a while (He had a great assist on the first goal). Another guy that played great tonight was Chris Kreider. I often say to people, when #19 is playing at his best, it is EXTREMELY hard to beat this Eagles team because it just adds to the number of weapons BC has. Some nights, Chris tends to be a little "off" but tonight was certainly not one of those nights. Tomorrow, BC will have to beat a tough Minnesota Duluth team (Who beat Maine tonight) to get back to the Frozen Four. It should be a great game between two great teams.

Why BC Won

1. Parker Milner. I thought Parker Milner played outstanding in his first start in an NCAA tournament game. He came up big all night long for the Eagles.

2. The Special Teams. One of the keys going into this game was how BC's power play and penalty kill would fare. While the PP was not great, the goal they recorded late in the third put away any chance Air Force had to come back. The PK was phenomenal as always.

3. The second line was great. Like I said earlier, I loved the way Straight, Kreider, and Hayes played tonight. I thought Kevin Hayes may have had his best game of the season.


1. No problems but the team will need to play better tomorrow in order to beat a tough Minnesota Duluth team tomorrow.


1. BC is now 9-1 all time in the DCU Center.

2. BC now has at least one power play goal in four straight games.

3. With a win tomorrow, BC would earn a spot in the Frozen Four (Tampa Bay, FL)

4. Shots were 34-20 in BC's favor.

Player of the game- Kevin Hayes

Next Up- UMD at 8:00 tomorrow. Win or go home !

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