2013-14 Year in Review, Part IV: Boston College Men’s Hockey

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We Eagles have so few true pleasures in sports when it comes to championships. Not to say we don’t celebrate our other teams, but Boston College men’s hockey has been a source of great pride for us all. The 2013-14 season was no exception.

While the team did not go as far as we wanted them to go, when you have the best coach and some of the best players year in and year out, it’s hard to complain when you’re still dusting and polishing a bunch of trophies.

2013-14 Boston College Men’s Hockey: Pre-season

What could expectations for the Eagles possibly be heading into hockey season? For those unfamiliar with the program, it’s typically winning Hockey East at a minimum and going all the way to a title as the ceiling. With how Jerry York and his assistants stack talent, that’s the norm. 2013-14 was much the same in that we expected “trophy season” to be as productive as it typically is around here.

The truth is, Boston College fans have been spoiled during the York era with four national championships, 11 Frozen Fours, 15 NCAA Tournament appearances, nine Hockey East Tournament titles, and eight Beanpots. The trophy case can always get more full, and the Eagles expected to add more in 2014, even with a freshman goalie in 17-year old Thatcher Demko.

2013-14 Boston College Men’s Hockey: 2013 Portion

Eagles hockey opened up their season officially on October 10 at Michigan as they played the Wolverines in their building, but their first win was not forthcoming: Boston College, then #4 in the nation, lost 3-1.

They exacted a penance for this, but from RPI and Wisconsin. In their home opener on October 13, the Eagles blasted Rensselaer by a 7-2 margin and then went on to obliterate then-#2 Wisconsin, 9-2. Sixteen goals in two games against ranked teams put all of college hockey on notice that this team would “be there” at the end.

Following a trip to Minnesota to face the #1 Gophers, Boston College men’s hockey put together a nice streak of five wins in a row, and an undefeated streak of seven. This took them into the start of Hockey East play in November as the Eagles swept a home-and-home with Northeastern, beat Boston University at Agganis, and went 1-0-1 against Massachusetts to get off to a strong start in the conference. In the middle of that, Boston College blasted Army for 11 goals in an historic rout and beat Harvard in Cambridge by a healthy 5-1 margin.

The Eagles typically experience a mid-season swoon. Theirs, if any, was brief. Boston College lost a 5-1 game in Maine in November, followed by a true “WTF loss” against Holy Cross at home on November 29. It was the first time Boston College men’s hockey had ever lost to a team from the Atlantic Hockey conference.

In true Jerry York fashion, the team responded. Boston College closed out the year with four wins in a row, sweeping a December weekend with New Hampshire, and then winning the Three Rivers Classic in Pittsburgh.

In fact, they were nowhere near close to done winning, and Johnny Gaudreau, the star of the team, was nowhere near done scoring. By New Year’s Eve, Gaudreau already had 15 goals and a total of 33 points, with an active points streak of 13 games. His best was yet to come.

Next page: Boston College men’s hockey from January to the 2014 HEA Tournament

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