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2017 Hockey East Tournament: Tale of the Tape, Facts and Figures

Photo Gallery: Hockey East Tournament Final Matt Dewkett/SB Nation

BOSTON — This weekend doesn’t just mean the start of March Madness in basketball. Hockey is crowning champions too!

As they always do, the eyes of the Hockey East world will descend on TD Garden for the league’s 33rd annual Championship Tournament, which features the top four seeds for the first time since 2013.

All three games this weekend will be televised on New England Sports Network and streamed live worldwide via ESPN3. Alex Faust, Billy Jaffe and Nikki Reyes have the call.

Before the puck drops at 5 p.m. Friday, let’s preview the weekend with our “Tale of the Tape” and some notables:

Hockey East Tournament Tale of the Tape

Stats #1 UMass Lowell #2 Boston University #3 Boston College #4 Notre Dame
Stats #1 UMass Lowell #2 Boston University #3 Boston College #4 Notre Dame
Record (HE) 24-10-3 (14-7-1) 23-10-3 (13-6-3) 20-14-4 (13-6-3) 21-10-5 (12-6-4)
Pairwise 8th 6th T-15th 10th
Goals 135 (3.65) 115 (3.19) 126 (3.32) 120 (3.33)
Goals Allowed 88 (2.38) 81 (2.25) 98 (2.58) 78 (2.17)
Shots 1080 (29.19) 1135 (31.53) 1243 (32.71) 1216 (33.78)
Shots Allowed 964 (26.05) 1058 (29.39) 1102 (29.00) 1056 (29.33)
Shot Percentage 12.5 10.1 10.1 9.9
PP 45/164 (27.4) 33/161 (20.5) 27/164 (16.5) 30/167 (18.0)
PK 149/174 (85.6) 157/181 (86.7) 172/207 (83.1) 120/141 (85.1)
SHG For/Against 4/5 9/3 9/3 4/1
Penalty Minutes 424 (11.5) 471 (13.1) 556 (14.6) 398 (11.1)
Leaders #1 UMass Lowell #2 Boston University #3 Boston College #4 Notre Dame
Points Joe Gambardella (48) Clayton Keller (40) Austin Cangelosi/Matthew Gaudreau (34) Anders Bjork (47)
Goals C.J. Smith (20) Keller (19) Cangelosi (20) Bjork/Andrew Oglevie (19)
Assists Gambardella (31) Patick Harper (22) Gaudreau (26) Bjork (28)
Defenseman Dylan Zink (10-25--35) Charlie McAvoy (4-20--24) Scott Savage (5-20--25) Jordan Gross (10-20--30)
Goaltender Tyler Wall (23-9-1, 2.11, .916) Jake Oettinger (20-9-3, 2.06, .928) Joseph Woll (16-12-3, 2.61, .913) Cal Petersen (21-10-5, 2.05, .930)

Facts and Figures

  • For the first time since 2013, the semifinal round of the Hockey East Tournament features all of the top four seeds. That year, UMass Lowell was also seeded first and won its first league title, defeating No. 4 Providence and No. 3 Boston University.
  • Lowell was the only team that needed three games to win its quarterfinal series, coming back from a 1-0 series deficit to down New Hampshire. In the other series, BU, BC and Notre Dame respectively swept Northeastern, Vermont and Providence to advance to the Garden.
  • The Eagles were 0-5-2 over their last seven regular-season games, but scored seven goals in each quarterfinal game against Vermont last weekend.
  • Four of the six players on the All-Hockey East First Team and five of six Second Team selections are playing at the Garden this weekend. Notre Dame goaltender Cal Petersen leads the First Team, while Boston University’s Clayton Keller ― the league’s Rookie of the Year ― is on the Second.
  • Keller is the ninth-ever Rookie of the Year from BU, and the first since Jack Eichel in 2015.
  • Tonight’s first semifinal is just the 13th all-time meeting between Lowell and Notre Dame, a series that the River Hawks lead by an 8-2-2 margin. The teams have met twice previously in postseason play with the River Hawks winning in the 2014 semifinals and 2015 quarterfinals.
  • Conversely, BU and BC are meeting for the 274th time. Their four previous Hockey East semifinal meetings have come since 2003, three of which were BU wins.
  • UMass Lowell has won 20 games in six consecutive seasons. With two wins over UNH last weekend, the River Hawks have 24 on the year, the most in Hockey East and tied for third-most nationally.
  • Norm Bazin’s Lowell teams are always balanced, and the same has been true this year as 19 different players have scored goals. Junior C.J. Smith reached the 20-goal marker for the first time in his collegiate career after scoring twice in Sunday’s 8-2 victory.
  • Notre Dame may be the geographic outlier of the teams this weekend, but junior Anders Bjork is a Boston Bruins draft pick and freshman Cal Burke is a Boxborough, Mass., native. Bjork enters the weekend as the team’s leading scorer and sixth in the league with 47 points, including 19 goals.
  • The Irish are 1-1-0 all-time on St. Patrick’s Day. Ten years ago today, Notre Dame captured the CCHA championship with a 2-1 win over Michigan at Joe Louis Arena.
  • Petersen has started Notre Dame’s last 86 games, the fourth-longest streak in NCAA Division 1 history and the longest by a Hockey East goaltender.
  • With Friday’s 5-0 win, Petersen became the first goaltender to shut out Providence in 87 games, since he did the same on Feb. 13, 2015.
  • This year marks the first time BC and BU have met in both the Beanpot and Hockey East tournaments since 2007, and the first time in league history that co-champions are meeting in the semifinals.
  • BU enters Friday night already with three wins against its archrival this season, a feat the Terriers had not accomplished since 1994-95. The Terriers swept a January home-and-home series and were 3-1 winners in the Beanpot semifinals.
  • BU and BC have identical shot percentages (10.1) and have each scored nine shorthanded goals this season.
  • Sophomore Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson has enjoyed success against the rival Eagles with four goals in six career games, while freshman Jake Oettinger has a .978 save percentage in this season’s three games, all of which have come with former U.S. National Team Development Program teammate Joseph Woll in the BC net.
  • The Terriers came back from 2-0 deficits to earn 3-2 wins in both of last weekend’s games against Northeastern. Sophomore Jordan Greenway scored the Friday winner in overtime, while freshman Chad Krys scored in the final minute of regulation the following night.
  • BU has now scored 49 third-period goals and two overtime goals this season, as compared to 27 by its opponents. BC has scored 45 in the third, but has just a plus-1 goal differential.
  • Senior Austin Cangelosi scored eight seconds into BC’s 7-0 Friday win over Vermont, the fastest goal to start a playoff game in Hockey East history. BC scored twice shorthanded in that contest, while sophomore J.D. Dudek netted two of the Eagles’ four power-play goals on Saturday.
  • Sophomore Colin White and senior Scott Savage each posted three assists last Saturday, a mark that has been achieved by an Eagle a national-best 11 times this season.