|G celebrates one of his goals. Photo from The Heights|
And he didn't. Thanks to a four point outburst from Johnny G, the #2 Boston College Eagles forced a game three on Sunday vs the #9 Notre Dame Fighting Irish by a score of 4-2 in front of 4,537 fans at Kelley Rink. I'll get into the game but let me just first say that this Johnny G guy is the single best hockey player I have ever seen at the colligate level. Heck I think he is better than Gretzky. Paul Kariya, well, I'm too young to remember him but I'm sure he was great, Brian Gionta is responsible for the resurrection of the program and for that he will always be loved around here, Nathan Gerbe basically won a National Championship on his own, and there are countless others that are in the conversation but if you ask me, #13 is the best there has ever been. What he does for this team is something that can't be put into words. The best part about the guy ? Some media member ask him after the game about one of his records and he had no clue. Personally, I'm kinda sick of all the talk about his point streak because those within the program don't care about individual accolades but in my book, this kid is the greatest there has ever been.
Overall, BC played 100 times better than it did last night. No, not everyone played great, but everyone stepped their effort level up another notch. BC played really hard tonight in all three ends. In the offensive zone, they created a lot of tremendous opportunities and could have very easily been up three goals after the first period. Notre Dame's breakout last night reminded me of some of stuff you see from all star teams. It was one or two passes and the puck was already going the other way. BC forced no turnovers, no odd man rushes, and sustained very little pressure. Tonight was a totally different story. The Eagles were fast, physical, forced a bunch of turnovers, and outshot the Irish by a 37-21 margin. The mission is nowhere near complete but an effort like that is the kind of stuff that wins you National Championships.
The most glaring aspect of the third period tonight was how tired Notre Dame looked. In college hockey they don't show playing time on the post game reports so I'm not sure of the numbers but it seemed like Tynan, Lucia, Hinostoza, Rust, Wuthrich (forwards), Johns, Lind, and Ryan (defense) were out there all the time. I'm not the biggest fan of playing some guys late in big games but it's clear that Coach York has a certain amount of confidence in each guy, something I am not sure the Notre Dame coaching staff has in their team. Playing three games in three days with two of those games being in the late afternoon has to be extremely tough on each player so tomorrow is going to be a huge conditioning test for both clubs.
Overall, really excited about this win but tomorrow's game is for all the marbles. Notre Dame is a very good hockey team and they have an excellent chance to win the game tomorrow. Heck, they just beat us 7-2. I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if they came in here and won again.
But remember who the man in the middle of the bench is.
Why BC Won-
1. Johnny G. I'm done trying to explain him. Someone else give it a try.
2. BC's team defense was exceptional. Notre Dame was limited to very few grade A chances, BC was physical in their own zone, and Demko was great.
3. The power play. The first unit is as good a unit as I can remember us ever having. They're sensational.
1. I got nothing but it was interesting to see Jeff Jackson rip the officials in his post game press conference. They got 6 power plays. We got 5. I guess someone has to replace Parker.
Player of the game- The sky is blue.
Next up- Game three tomorrow @ 4:30 on NESN.