BC Hockey Preview of Champions: Parker Milner, #35


Douglas Jones-US PRESSWIRE

Following the disastrous end of the 2010-11 Boston College hockey season, Eagles fans not only mourned the upset loss to Colorado College that came like a flash of lighting, but also their departing players. Some big names left BC after that game, either by graduation or the call of professional hockey. One of the men who took his leave of Chestnut Hill was John Muse, senior goaltender who led the Eagles to two national championships. That was not an easy act for Parker Milner to follow, and few thought it was possible to do so successfully.

Milner, a senior native of Pittsburgh, started out at Mt. Lebanon High School for a few years, but then went far away from home at Avon Old Farms in Connecticut. There, he was a teammate of his current captain, Pat Mullane, for one season. He was not long for that boarding school, however, as Milner moved on to the USHL. Immediately prior to joining Boston College’s hockey team, Milner was a goalie for the Waterloo Black Hawks in Iowa. His only season in the Midwest was a good one, as Milner won 20 of 28 games with a GAA under three.

Parker Milner became a Boston College Eagle in 2009, backing up John Muse. He recorded the decision in thirteen games as a freshman, winning ten of them in over 800 minutes in-goal. This lent the Eagles a hand as they won their first national title while Milner was on the roster.

He and a few other teammates got in a wee bit of trouble with the police before his sophomore year began, and fans wondered if it would impact his status on the team. It did not, but his second season was a little less flashy. Milner got less ice time as John Muse ran the show in his senior year, only getting five starts, going 3-2 and posting an .899 saves percentage. Following that, he was then charged with the task of replacing a goalie who led his team to ultimate victory twice, and the road got rocky.

Parker Milner opened the season at 10-5-0, but things did not look or feel right. Coach Jerry York benched him in lieu of Brian Billett and Chris Venti, trying to get his team’s mojo back with either one of them. Neither one proved up to the task, so York went back to Milner.

He won his next 19 starts in a row, and the rest is history.

Milner’s incredible run mirrored the team’s, and his performance was so dominant throughout March and April that he was named the national tournament’s Most Outstanding Player at the 2012 Frozen Four.

Nobody knows what kind of year Parker Milner will have in 2012-13, but he will not play in every game. Most of them, yes, but not all. He will be the primary goalie, and he should be. The other guys will fight it out for his job next year, but last spring, every doubt we had about Parker Milner was erased, and we should be pleased that he is in the net for the Eagles this year.