Entering this year's Beanpot Tournament as the three-time defending champion, Boston College squares off against Harvard in the second semifinal tonight at approximately 8:00 p.m. ET. The Crimson, sitting in last place in the ECAC, will look to pull the upset.
The Eagles are still primed for a terrific season, but have played less than stellar for much of the new calendar year. Jerry York's squad did get back on track Friday night with a convincing 4-1 victory over Vermont.
BC doesn't have the depth they have had in past seasons, which has come to light with a recent string of injuries. Jerry York made some major overhauls to his offensive lines before the UVM game Friday night, creating more of a balanced attack. Sophomore Johnny Gaudreau is one of the most dynamic players in all of college hockey no matter who he is playing with. The sophomore from Carneys Point, NJ has 13 goals and 20 assists on the season. The Calgary Flames draft pick was one of the key cogs in the Americans' Gold-winning performance at the 2013 World Junior Championships last month.
Defensively, the Eagles are led by senior Patrick Wey and freshman Michael Matheson. Senior Parker Milner will be between the pipes when the Eagles take the ice against Harvard tonight. The Pittsburgh native has been a key component in the BC lineup the past two seasons.
For the Crimson, the season has been full of disappointment on and off the ice. Several players had to leave school due to an academic cheating scandal, and the wins have been few and far between for the team while on the ice.
Ted Donato's squad only has one win since the start of December, an early January victory over Boston University. The lineup is not void of talent as there are five NHL draft picks that will most likely take the ice tonight.
Leading the offense is freshman and local product Jimmy Vesey. The Nashville Predators draft pick has 10 goals, 6 more than any other Crimson player. The son of Merrimack's all-time leading scorer, Vesey was a member of the American team at the World Juniors.
The defense was hit hard by the academic cheating scandal as NHL draft picks Max Everson and Patrick McNally both had to leave the program for the season. Senior Danny Biega, a Carolina Hurricanes draft pick, has been the leader on the bueline. The last name should be familiar to Beanpot fans as his two older brothers, Alex and Michael, also played for the Crimson. Junior Raphael Girard is the expected starter in net for Harvard.
It used to be said that anything can happen the first two Mondays in February. The phrase was "You can throw the standings out the door." But lately, it has been the BC and BU show. Ted Donato and his squad will look to change that night tonight against the heavily favored Eagles.
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