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Eichel, BU Power Past Lowell in OT

Freshman Jack Eichel scored his second overtime winner of the season on Sunday afternoon at Agganis Arena as No. 2 Boston University beat No. 6 UMass Lowell 4-3 to jump into a first-place tie in Hockey East.

Matt Dewkett

BOSTON -- Following Friday night's loss to its archrival, No. 2 Boston University certainly looked a bit deflated.

"We walked into the rink for a short practice yesterday and you might have thought that everybody's dog died," BU head coach David Quinn said. "It was a loss in January ... and we didn't play great. We needed to put it behind us."

Put it behind them, they did.

The Terriers responded with a resilient effort in a very evenly matched game, scoring the final three goals en route to a 4-3 overtime win over No. 6 UMass Lowell on Sunday afternoon at Agganis Arena.

"We just beat a very good hockey team," Quinn said. "They make you work for everything. I'm so proud of our resiliency. I thought after we got down 3-1, we did a great job of kind of pulling it together and playing with the pace we needed to. ... I liked a lot of our game tonight."

Freshman Jack Eichel posted the deciding goal, his second walk-off winner of the year, just nine seconds into a power play at the 1:18 mark of the extra session. The North Chelmsford, Mass. native's goal was BU's third in four power-play chances on the night.

With the win, the Terriers improved to 13-4-4 and their 8-2-2 Hockey East mark allowed them to jump into a first-place tie with the River Hawks.

Eichel drew a hooking penalty as he rushed through two defenders into the offensive zone and the Terriers scored on the ensuing power play.

At 5:30, junior captain Matt Grzelcyk's threw a puck towards the net that bounced off to UML goaltender Kevin Boyle's left and onto the stick of junior Ahti Oksanen for a slight redirection inside the post.

"I guess they kind of forgot me through the back door. I was wide open and Grizzy found me there," Oksanen said. "I just, somehow, tipped it in between my legs. The pass was a bit off so I couldn't cleanly tip it and had to try to get it to the net."

The Terriers allowed 18 shots on goal in the first period and the visitors cashed in twice in the 18th minute of play to take a 2-1 lead into the first intermission.

At 17:27, freshman C.J. Smith dashed through two defensemen in the neutral zone and deked to the backhand for his eighth goal of the season to tie the game at 1-1. Junior assistant captain A.J. White lifted the River Hawks 23 seconds later as he took a beautiful feed across the crease from sophomore Evan Campbell.

The River Hawks jumped ahead by two goals 1:57 into the second as Smith scored his second goal of the game off a rebound kicked to O'Connor's left, again off a primary assist from Campbell.

In the second, BU took 12 of the period's 20 shots on goal and drew even with two goals.

At 7:49, senior assistant captain Evan Rodrigues' initial shot bounced into the low slot where junior Danny O'Regan was waiting to stuff a rebound home for his team-leading 16th goal of the season.

Oksanen finished off his second two-goal effort in four games as junior Matt Lane set him up for a point shot with 43.5 seconds left.

"There were a lot of mistakes out there and certainly a lot of turnover pucks for both teams," UML head coach Norm Bazin said. "Obviously, we couldn't get out of our own way on the penalty kill tonight. They end up 3-for-4 (on the power play) and we end up with a loss."

The teams skated to a very even third period with BU holding a 13-11 shots on goal advantage. UML had some golden opportunities to take a lead in the third. Sophomore Joe Gambardella to put a puck on net from his stomach with less than three minutes to play, but O'Connor made one of his 34 saves with the blocker.

Eichel, who has posted 20 of his 34 points this season in the third period or overtime, used Grzelcyk's third primary assist of the game for the winner. He deposited a one-time shot from outside the right circle into the top right corner of the net.

"I've never seen Jack want to shoot a puck more," Quinn said. "He actually said that was the first one-time goal he's ever scored, but there wasn't a goalie on the planet stopping that one."

BU is now 2-1-2 in January and heads to Vermont for a pair next weekend, while UML opens a home-and-home with Providence on Friday at Tsongas Center.