The longest winning streak in Hockey East now belongs to a team that didn't have a league win until last weekend. The unlikeliest of teams, Northeastern, now owns a six-game winning streak and an eight game unbeaten streak.
The Huskies swept Merrimack, 5-2 and 4-1, over the weekend in a home-and-home series. Jim Madigan's team outshot the Warriors by nine shots each night, as star forward Kevin Roy returned after missing the last 12 games.
The Anaheim Ducks prospect had an assist each night, but his goal-less drought reached 13 games since the beginning of the season.
Freshman Adam Gaudette, a Vancouver Canucks prospect, continued his emergence as he had two assists Friday before scoring a power play goal Saturday. The Braintree, Mass. native now has a seven-game point streak in which he's scored three times and added nine helpers.
Another rookie, goaltender Ryan Ruck, kept his strong play going, stopping 37 of 40 shots on the weekend. There remains some questions of just how reliable Ruck can be on a consistent basis, but his increased performance has coincided with the Huskies' unbeaten streak.
On the other end of the spectrum in the weekend series was Merrimack, a team that has now lost nine games in a row. The lone bright spot was New Jersey Devils prospect Brett Seney, who scored twice, running his goal streak to three games.
The Huskies weren't the only team to stay hot. Notre Dame went on the road to Durham and swept a reeling New Hampshire squad. The Irish now have a 12-game unbeaten streak and have the best conference winning percentage in Hockey East.
Jeff Jackson's team won easily, 5-1, in the series opener before pulling out a 3-2 win in the finale thanks to a third period tally from senior Mario Lucia. It was the fourth straight game he's found the back of the net. He has five goals and two assists during that span.
Boston Bruins draft pick Anders Bjork has a 10-game scoring streak in which he's lit the lamp seven times and dished out eight helpers. Montreal Canadiens prospect Jake Evans has three goals and seven assists over his current six-game point streak.
It's not just the forwards getting in on the act. Freshman blue liner Bobby Nardella has registered at least a point in seven consecutive games. He has two goals and 10 assists during that span. Sophomore defenseman Jordan Gross, who had three assists on the weekend, is +11 over the past six games.
The Irish will face a stiff test to keep the unbeaten streak alive when Boston College pays a visit to South Bend Friday night.
UNH, on the wrong side of the weekend sweep, has now lost six games in a row. How bad have things gotten for Dick Umile's team? The Wildcats played third string goaltender Jamie Regan in Saturday's 3-2 loss. It was the first career start for the senior.
Other Weekend Highlights
- Boston University swept Maine, 5-2 and 6-1, in a series the Terriers completely dominated from start to finish. Ahti Oksanen had two goals and two assists in Friday's rout in Orono before adding two more helpers Saturday. Oksanen, who was thought to have been lost for the rest of the season due to injury, has four multi-point games in the last six. Matt Lane and Bobo Carpenter each scored twice in Saturday's game.
- Jerry York recorded his 1,000th career victory Friday night as Boston College crushed Massachusetts, 8-0, on the road in Amherst. It was an absolute thumping from the get go as the Eagles scored five times in the first period. A night later at home, BC skated to a 3-3 draw with UConn.
- Vermont bounced back from two tough losses at home to Providence with two road wins against UConn and UMass. Junior Brendan Bradley had two goals and three assists on the weekend to push his scoring streak to five games.
- UMass, losers of six straight, has been outscored 33-9 over that period. The Minutemen played well for the first 40 minutes against UVM, holding leads of 3-1 and 4-2, but squandered that advantage in the third period. UMass gave up four goals in the third period to lose, 6-4.
- Providence and UMass Lowell split their home-and-home series, but it started out looking like it could be a long weekend for the River Hawks. The Friars jumped out to a 3-0 lead after 1 and held a 4-0 lead in the second before for UML scored twice to make the final score 4-2. A night later at the Tsongas Center, UMass Lowell held serve for a 3-1 win. Providence senior Brandon Tanev and Lowell senior A.J. White both scored twice on the weekend.