ANCHORAGE, Alaska - An improbable third-period rally by Robert Morris led to a 3-2 season-opening loss for the No. 8/9 Boston University men's ice hockey team on Friday evening in the first round of the Nye Frontier Classic at Sullivan Arena. Senior captain Brian McGuirk tallied a goal and an assist for the Terriers, who allowed the Colonials to score the game's final three goals - all on the power play - in a span of under four minutes.
The Terriers, who dropped their season opener for just the second time in the last seven years, outshot the Colonials by a 35-15 margin. BU was 0-for-7 on the power play, while RMU converted half of its six man-up chances.
McGuirk's performance was his first ever multi-point game. Senior Karson Gillespie made 12 saves for the Terriers, while RMU got an impressive 33-save performance from senior Christian Boucher.
Junior Jason Lawrence scored the lone goal of the first two periods and McGuirk found the back of the net at 2:24 of the third period to give the Terriers a 2-0 lead. BU, however, was whistled for four penalties the rest of the way and the Colonials took full advantage of the opportunities, scoring on three of them.
Following penalties to freshmen Colin Wilson and Colby Cohen, the Colonials were awarded a two-man advantage for 24 seconds. With just three seconds left in the 5-on-3, senior Sean Berkstresser knocked in a rebound to get RMU on the board.
Just over a minute later, freshman Scott Kobialko scored his first collegiate goal for the Colonials when he redirected a pass at the left crease to knot the game at 2-2.
Another third-period penalty proved costly for the Terriers, as the rally was capped by power-play tally by RMU senior Tom Biondich with just under 10 minutes left in regulation. Biondich's shot hit off a BU defender and proceeded to slide under the legs of Gillespie.
The Terriers had two more power-play chances in the final eight minutes of the contest, but were unable to draw even.
Lawrence opened the scoring 8:11 into the contest when he knocked in a puck along the left edge of the crease on assists from McGuirk and junior Matt Gilroy. Lawrence brought the puck into the zone along the right side before passing off to Gilroy, who skated in and sent it back to McGuirk in front of the net. McGuirk had a shot bounce off Boucher and Lawrence charged in from the left and sent home the rebound.
After neither team scored in the middle stanza, McGuirk was the beneficiary of a perfect three-zone pass from classmate Ryan Monaghan in the early stages of the third. Monghan collected the puck in the BU zone and spotted McGuirk streaking up the left side. The captain received the pass and fired a shot from just inside the left faceoff circle that went past Boucher's left shoulder.
Four freshmen made their collegiate debuts for the Terriers, including Cohen, Wilson, Kevin Shattenkirk and Victor Saponari.
BU will return to action on Saturday (Oct. 13) when it takes on tournament host Alaska Anchorage at 11 p.m. EST.