Tuesday, December 18, 2012

First Half Review- Defensmen and Goalies


1. Matt Grzelcyk(2-10-12,15 GP)- The freshman Bruins draft pick has exceeded expectations as he performed extremely well in his first semester of college hockey action. He has settled into a defensive pairing with classmate Ahti Oksanen and they both are seeing plenty of ice time. Both of his goals this year came against BC, which makes it even better. Grzelcyk will miss the Terriers' next game on 12/29 at Denver due to being away at the WJC with team USA. He will be missed for sure but if he helps beat those fraudulent Canadians, it will be worth it.

2. Garrett Noonan(3-7-10, 15 GP)- The freshly appointed assistant captain has had a solid first half for the Terriers even if his goal total is not quite as high as last year. Noonan finished last year with a 16-11-27 line in 38 games. He isn't quite on pace to reach that goal total again but his assists have gone up which is a positive sign. Teams have actually somewhat covered him on the backdoor powerplay this year which was the source of a majority of his goals last season. He has been nothing short of solid defensively He will need to have a solid second half for this team as he is a crucial defenseman and sees large amounts of ice time. He is on a similar pace for penalty minutes from last year. This would be nice to cut down on but penalties happen when you play with as much passion and emotion as he does.

3. Alexx Privitera(2-6-8, 14 GP)- Privvy has made a big jump from his freshman season and is now seeing plenty of ice time. He is an offensive threat on the powerplay and he showed that with an absolute snipe against Vermont in November.  He also has been responsible defensively as he is second in HE with 43 blocked shots. He trails his d-pair partner Sean Escobedo by one in that department. His impressive play will need to continue as it seems he will easily beat his 4-10-14 line from last season. I would expect 20+ points by the time the season is out.

4. Ahti Oksanen(3-3-6, 12 GP)- Ahti has made the transition from Finland rather smoothly as he has been a stable partner with Matt Grzelcyk and has shown a scoring touch. It certainly puts more pressure on other teams when both defensemen can jump into the play at any time and score a goal. The Fin has seen an increase in ice time as of late and I wouldn't expect him to miss another game unless it is due to injuries.

5. Sean Escobedo(2-3-5, 15 GP)- Escobedo has had a great season so far even if his offensive stats aren't earth-shattering. He has stayed out of the box with only 7 penalties in 15 games. He also leads the league in blocked shots and has been very helpful for both freshman goalies. He also has shown the ability to jump into the play offensively.He has some nice moves such as his spin move and goal at Vermont that he is probably still reminding Coach Parker about. I would expect him to finish the year with 15-20 points as that assist total is bound to go up in the second half of the season.

6. Ryan Ruikka(1-1-2, 12 GP)- Ruikka hasn't scored a goal since opening night against Providence, but has still been a steady force defensively. The assistant captain has been a model citizen off the ice as well. He has split time with junior Patrick MacGregor as the 6th defenseman. I think Coach Parker would like to pick one to stick with so it will be interesting to see how both play in the second half.

7. Patrick MacGregor(0-1-1,7 GP)- "Truck" has been seeing more ice time as of late as he has been in a rotation with Ryan Ruikka. His best game of the first half was at Vermont as he almost had his first career goal on a few separate occasions. I think he gets it in the second half and I can't wait to see what the celly is like. It better be something absurd.

8. Matt "The Bod" Ronan- The Bod hasn't seen any game action yet this season but according to GW and HS's scouting report from the alum game, he is making a strong push for ice time. This could come into play 12/29 at Denver when BU will only have 7 healthy dmen with Matt Grzelcyk away at World Juniors.


1. Matt O'Connor(7-3-0, .931 save %, 2.22 GAA)- OC has been rock solid throughout the year for this team. He has only allowed more than two goals twice all year. He has gotten some big wins for this club including BC, at UNH, and at North Dakota. He is one of the two great goalies that this team has and can shut a team down on any given night.

2. Sean Maguire(3-2-0, .930 save %, 2.00 GAA)- Mags had a rough start to the year up in UNH but he has played well ever since. He currently is coming off back to back home shutouts. He literally didn't allow a goal in Agganis Arena in the first half of the season. He has worked himself into a rotation with O'Connor which is no easy task looking at his numbers. He will see his share of starts in the second half for sure. He has proven he can play well in tough environments like North Dakota and at the friendly confines of Agganis Arena.

3. Anthony Moccia(0.00 GAA)- Moccia hasn't played in a game yet this year but he did make a huge save on Mike Grier in the alumni game, according to reports. This was later deemed the defining moment of the game as Moccia's team went on to a 9-8 victory.

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