We enjoyed the men’s hockey team’s regular season much more than we have enjoyed the NCAA Tournament.
First, the Elis fell to Vermont in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament in Bridgeport a few weeks ago. Then our latest fascination, the fourth-seeded and previously-anonymous Bemidji State Beavers, got knocked off by Miami (Ohio) to end their dream season. And now our hopes for an upset in the tournament championship game have been dashed by powerhouse Boston University. In the title game tonight in Washington, the top-seeded Terriers scored two goals in the last 59 seconds of the third period to force overtime against fourth-seeded Miami and eventually came away with a 4-3 victory.
More from the AP after the jump. Or, if you’d prefer to keep reveling in the Beavers’ title run, click here to read 10 things you didn’t know about Bemidji State, courtesy of Sports Editor Brittany Golob. (We recommend the latter.)
Boston U beats Miami 4-3 in OT for 5th NCAA title
By HOWARD FENDRICH
The Associated Press
WASHINGTON — Boston University must feel as though it got to celebrate this NCAA hockey championship twice.
Trailing by two goals with a minute left in regulation, the top-seeded Terriers stormed back to force overtime, then beat Miami (Ohio) 4-3 on a goal that went in off a RedHawks player in the extra session Saturday night.
Colby Cohen was credited with the winning goal on a slap shot that ricocheted off sliding defenseman Kevin Roeder’s leg 11:47 into OT and gave BU its fifth national hockey title — and first since 1995.
Both goalies — Boston’s Kieran Millan and Miami’s Cody Reichard — are freshmen, and both were superb. Millan made 29 saves. Reichard made 28, but it was that last shot — he really had no chance — that he’ll remember the most, of course.
Boston (35-6-4), which set a school record for victories in a season, was playing in its 10th NCAA final. Miami (23-13-4) had never been beyond the round of eight in the hockey tournament — and, indeed, still never has won any NCAA team championship.
No. 1 sure seemed close Saturday, when the outcome appeared settled after Tommy Wingels and Trent Vogelhuber scored less than 3 1/2 minutes apart in the third period to break open what had been a tie game and put Miami ahead 3-1.
But BU’s Nick Bonino had a goal and an assist in the final minute of the third period to send the game to overtime, including the tying score with 17.4 seconds left.
This was the first NCAA hockey championship game to go to an extra period since 2002, when Minnesota beat Maine.
Wingels knocked in a rebound with 7 1/2 minutes left in regulation, and Vogelhuber added to the advantage with 4:08 to go after BU turned the puck over at the blue line.
The RedHawks’ supporters in the crowd of 18,512 certainly thought the championship was won at that point: Shortly after Vogelhuber’s goal, they unleashed loud chants of “Yes, we can! Yes, we can!”
With only a handful of minutes left, the RedHawks’ players might have been forgiven for thinking those fans were right. After all, up until then, Miami had allowed all of five goals in the entire tournament.
But with Millan on the bench in favor of an extra skater, Zack Cohen corralled Bonino’s rebound and lifted a backhander over Reichard with 59.5 seconds left in the third period. That pulled the Terriers within a goal — and give them some hope.
Boston went unbeaten this season when Bonino records at least a point, and the sophomore forward netted the tying goal with a one-timer off a deft pass from Hobey Baker Award winner Matt Gilroy.
BU’s players jumped all over each other on the bench, and Gilroy skated over to join the festivities. Moments later, as Miami’s players headed toward their locker room for the intermission before OT, several patted Reichard on the helmet, as if to say, “Don’t worry about it, Kid.”
But Boston, which features 13 players drafted by NHL teams, was in charge in OT. After the winning goal went in, the Terriers players piled atop each other on the ice. As their coach, Jack Parker, walked over to join in, he was greeted first with a big bear hug from Gilroy.