CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. -- Welcome inside Kelley Rink on the campus of Boston College where the No. 9 Eagles open the Hockey East Quarterfinals on this Friday evening. Faceoff against No. 17 Vermont is set for 7 p.m.
BC clinched the No. 3 seed for the fourth time in its Hockey East history and for the first time since 2006 with its regular season-ending split at Notre Dame two weeks ago. The Eagles have advanced to the conference's championship game in each of the previous three years (1999, 2000, 2006) they have landed in that position at season's end.
The Eagles split their regular-season series with Vermont here Feb. 13-14, but bring a 6-0-0 all-time Hockey East playoff mark against the Catamouts into this weekend's series.
Freshman Alex Tuch and sophomore Ryan Fitzgerald's 14 goals apiece paced the Eagle attack while Tuch registered 28 points for the sole team lead. Tuch is carrying a hot stick into the weekend as he has six goals and nine points in seven games, a streak which includes three points against UVM. Patrick Eaves and Brian Boyle were the last pair of BC players that did not need to reach 20 goals to lead the team as each scored 19 in 2004-05.
The Catamounts are the No. 7 seed for the fifth time in their Hockey East history and visit Chestnut Hill after a thrilling three-game series win over Maine in the first round at Gutterson Fieldhouse. In Sunday night's 3-2 win, junior Jonathan Turk scored the clinching goal with 3:55 left in overtime.
Senior captain Mike Paliotta's nine goals and 36 points are enough for a comfortable team points lead over sophomore Brady Shaw. He is looking to become the first defenseman to lead the Catamounts in scoring since Louis Cote in 1977-78.
Here are tonight's lines:
CATAMOUNTS (20-13-4, 10-9-3)
Brendan Bradley - Jake Fallon - Brady Shaw
Trey Phillips - Colin Markison - Kevin Irwin
Anthony Petruzzelli - Jonathan Turk - Jarrid Privitera
Travis Blanleil - Rob Darrar - Malcolm McKinney
Alexx Privitera - Mike Paliotta
Yvan Pattyn - Nick Luukko
Rob Hamilton - Ori Abramson
EAGLES (20-11-3, 12-7-3)
Zach Sanford - Adam Gilmour - Alex Tuch
Quinn Smith - Michael Sit - Destry Straight
Ryan Fitzgerald - Austin Cangelosi - Chris Calnan
Cam Spiro - Matthew Gaudreau - Teddy Doherty
Michael Matheson - Steve Santini
Scott Savage - Danny Linell
Noah Hanifin - Ian McCoshen