Friday, October 12, 2012

Previewing the Northeastern Huskies

The 2012-13 edition of the Boston College Eagles hockey team will start it's run at another National Title on Saturday night when it travels to historic Matthews Arena and pays a visit to Northeastern. The Eagles won all four games vs Northeastern last year and currently hold a 8-1-1 record vs NU over the past ten games. Unlike BC, the Huskies have already kicked off their campaign as they defeated Merrimack Wednesday night at Matthews Arena by a score of 4-2. Despite losing their best forward (Steve Quailer) and best defenseman (Anthony Bitetto) from last years team, NU returns a strong group of forwards led by senior Vinny Sapronari and sophomore Ludwig Karlsson. Northeastern also landed prized recruit Kevin Roy, who had the game winning goal vs Merrimack, over the course of the summer to boost it's forward unit. In terms of forwards, i'd say Northeastern is as deep and as talented as BC or any team in the league for that matter.

On the defensive side of the puck, Northeastern lost the previously mentioned Bitetto and Luke Eilbler (transfer) from last seasons squad. With these two gone, NU, not unlike BC, will need to break in some new freshman who will need to be on the top of their games vs a fast Eagles squad.  In their first game vs Merrimack, Northeastern was led by their big line of Karlsson, Sapronari, and senior Garrett Vermeersch as that line seemed to dominate the play when they were out there. If the Eagles are to win this game, they have to find a way to try and stop these guys. Merrimack couldn't but there is a big difference between BC and Merrimack...BC is fast and the Warriors are not. I think BC's speed will be able to surprise these guys in the early going but BC can only use that speed if they get the puck into the open ice and make plays. One area where BC has a big advantage over NU is in net. Goalie Chris Rawlings has struggled vs Boston College in the past and is also known the give up some real soft goals.

As for the Eagles, it's a new team and it's a young team. BC just has to do what they usually do best in order to win this game...Like I said, speed is always the key for BC, if guys can find some open ice and make plays, I think BC should win this game. Tomorrow, more so than maybe any other game because of Rawlings, BC just has to put the puck on net. Rawlings can be very good at times (like last seasons game @ BC) but when he is bad, he gives up a lot of bad rebounds. Just take a look at some highlights from last years BC Invitational first round game.

Look, tomorrow, is going to be a good game. That rink will be going nuts from start to finish so the Eagles are going to need to get it going early and often which can be tough in the first game.

Players to Watch- 

Kevin Roy- A real solid freshman forward for the Huskies. Can make a lot happen with the puck on his stick...need to keep an eye on him

Vinny Sapronari- Recorded 24 points last year. Had two assists in Wednesday's opener.

Ludwig Karlsson- Was first on the team a season ago with 26 points.

Best Line- Karlsson-Vermeersch-Sapronari

Keys for the Eagles- 

1. Have to get it going early and often...need a good frist period.

2. Winning the battle of the special teams. Hopefully, BC stays away from taking a couple of bad penalties and converts when given the chances on the PP.

3. Get puck to Rawlings. Always a key when facing Northeastern...any puck on net tomorrow is a good puck on net...


1. BC leads the all time series vs Northeastern 155-46-14

2. BC is 47-16-5 under Coach York vs Northeastern

3. BC has won 5 in a row vs Northeastern

Prediction- BC 3 Northeastern 2

Until next time,


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