Boston College hockey and its alumni have had many good days in 2012. Monday was another.
Just nine days earlier, Chris Kreider played in the Division I hockey national championship game. On Monday night, he teamed up with another former Eagle as the New York Rangers defeated the Ottawa Senators, 1-0, in the third game of their Stanley Cup playoff series.
Rangers coach John Tortorella showed great faith in Kreider from the outset, playing him on the team’s top line with prolific scorers Brad Richards and Marian Gaborik. Initially, the coach would not commit to playing the former Boston College star, but as the game began, it was clear that Tortorella placed Kreider on the first line. Chris Kreider’s NHL debut was made possible by the three-game suspension to another Rangers rookie, Carl Hagelin.
For stretches of the game, Kreider appeared to have early jitters — after all, he did make his debut during the NHL playoffs — but even MSG Network’s color analyst remarked that he played much better in the second period. Kreider played decently; he did not particularly stand out for anything good or bad but appeared to be doing what he needed to do and gave an overall adequate performance. In total, Kreider played for a little over 11 minutes.
It was another former Boston College player, however, that stole the show. Eagle alum Brian Boyle, who spent four years at BC with Jerry York and company, scored the game-winning (and only) goal of the contest, giving the Rangers their 1-0 win. Boyle has scored a goal in each of the first three games of this best-of-seven playoff series and earned the third star for his performance on Monday night.
Boyle also had a breakaway chance at a late shorthanded goal, but he instead drew a penalty to end the Ottawa power play.
Kreider and Boyle continue to represent their alma mater well.