BOSTON - Pete MacArthur and Kenny Roche scored 48 seconds apart midway through the second period to lead the No. 7/8 Boston University men’s ice hockey team to a 4-0 victory over Northeastern in the opening round of the 55th Beanpot tournament at TD Banknorth Garden. Dan McGoff added a pair of third period goals for the Terriers, who are now 79-30 all time in the tournament. With the victory, BU advances to the championship game for the 46th time, including the past 13. John Curry stopped 27 shots for the Terriers to post his second consecutive shutout and sixth overall. BU will face the winner of the Boston College – Harvard game next Monday, Feb. 12 at 8 p.m.
With the victory, BU advances to the championship game for the 46th time, including the past 13. Senior goaltender John Curry (Shorewood, Minn.) stopped 27 shots to post his second consecutive shutout and sixth overall this season. It was BU’s first Beanpot shutout since Rick DiPietro blanked Harvard 5-0 in the opening round of the 2000 tournament.
BU opened the scoring on the power-play at 8:59 of the second when sophomore forward Chris Higgins (Lynnfield, Mass.) curled out from the corner and sent a perfect feed across the crease to MacArthur who was alone at the far post. MacArthur one-timed the pass past a sprawling Brad Thiessen for is team-leading 12th goal and a 1-0 BU lead. It was the second career Beanpot goal for MacArthur, the 2006 Beanpot MVP. His first was the game-winner in the Terriers’ 3-2 victory over Boston College in last year’s championship game.
The goal also ended a scoreless drought of 96:57 between the Terriers and Huskies, who battled to a scoreless tie on Jan. 6 at Agganis Arena. It was the first goal scored between the two teams since Roche’s game-winner at 19:04 of the third period during a 4-3 BU victory at Agganis on Oct. 20. Northeastern has not scored on the Terriers in 127:03.
The Terriers upped the lead to 2-0 just 48 seconds later when Sean Sullivan sprung Roche on a breakaway and the senior forward lifted a shot over Thiessen’s shoulder just as the Northeastern netminder went for a pokecheck.
Northeastern had chances to get back in the game late in the second, but Curry stood tall. With 1:45 to go in the period, freshman Kyle Kraemer came in alone on Curry, but his shot rang off the post. Then, during the closing seconds of the period while on a 5-on-3 advantage, Mike Morris’ goal-mouth redirection of Steve Birnstill’s point shot was steered aside by the BU netminder.
The Terriers put the game away in the third.
With under five minutes to go in the game, McGoff chipped the puck out of the BU zone and chased it down into Norteastern's end as Thiessen attempted to play it at the bottom of the faceoff circle. With the junior winger forechecking hard, Thiessen errantly swept the puck into his own goal for a 3-0 BU lead.
McGoff closed out the scoring, potting a power-play marker with 24 seconds left in the game on assists from Matt Gilroy (North Bellmore, N.Y.) and Brian McGuirk (Danvers, Mass.). Gilroy had a pair of assists, also helping on Roche's second period tally.
Curry was once again strong in net for BU in picking up his 12th career shutout, one shy of the school record held by Jack Ferreira. His sparkling left pad stop on Kraemer midway through the third period preserved a 2-0 Terrier lead.
BU next plays at Massachusetts on Friday, Feb. 8 at 7 p.m. before returning to TD Banknorth Garden to face the winner of the Boston College – Harvard contest in the Beanpot championship game next Monday, Feb. 12 at 8 p.m.