Thursday, October 3, 2013

St. Francis-Xavier Preview

It's the wonderful time of year again where actual college hockey games will be played. Granted that they will not count in the standings until next weekend but they will give fans things to talk about for the next week until the regular season begins a next Friday. The BU Terriers host the St. Francis-Xavier Xmen this weekend in an exhibition game which, will be their only tune-up for the regular season. I don't know much about the Xmen besides that their nickname might be the worst of all-time. Xmen just sounds awful and doesn't roll off the tongue at all but hey, they're a canadian school, you can only expect so much from them. If you want to learn more how college hockey works in Canada, you can read this solid interview from our fellow BU blog Bloggin' on Babcock.  It is better written than anything we throw out there and is good to explain the differences between college hockey in the US and America's hat also know as Canada.

For the regular season game previews,  I will be focusing mostly on why the other team sucks and the areas where BU can take advantage of them in each game. For this game, I am going focus on what Terrier fans should be looking for from the team this weekend as they prepare for the regular season.

1. Goalies- I think it is obvious that both Matt O'Connor and Sean Maguire will see time in net for the Terriers. What will be interesting will be to see how both look after a full season in the program and if O'Connor has any rust after missing the last month of last season with a collapsed lung. Having two steady forces in net will be a huge asset for first year coach David Quinn. It will also be interesting if Quinn gives senior Anthony Moccia anytime in net as he has certainly sounded high on all of his seniors thus far.

2. Forward line combos- Quinn will certainly be mixing and matching lines up front throughout the game as he only returns 3 of his top 6 forwards(Hohmann, Rodrigues, and O'Regan). Quinn will be integrating 5-6 freshmen forwards into the lines up front. I'm interested if he puts 3 of them into one line or if he mixes and matches with the older guys up front. I would say the only thing set in stone if keeping Rodrigues and O'Regan together since they played on the team's best line last year.

3. Sophomore jump- Last year Hohmann, Rodrigues, and Privitera all made big jumps in their play for the freshmen season especially Hohmann and Rodrigues who each tripled their production from their freshman seasons. Now I'm not saying Danny O'Regan is going to put up 100+ points this year but if O'Regan can come close to the 40 point mark along with Kurker and Lane make significant jumps to 25-30 points then this team will score plenty for the defense and the goaltending that they have. I think Mike Moran is another interesting guy to watch to see if he can up his offensive output. Defensively Grzelcyk and Oksanen both have tons of talent and potential for big years offensively from the blue line.

4. Dirty Canadians?- Typically, these Canadian universities come down in these games and start up line brawls before its all over. The Terriers need to keep their heads and avoid any type of altercation that could result in suspensions or injuries as depth is not this team's strength this year.

5. Captains-Coach Quinn said at HE media day which was held a few weeks ago that he expected to name a captain by the end of the September. He then said this week that he expects to name a captain by the end of the week. If the announcement doesn't come tomorrow then we may just find out but seeing who has letters on their chest when they come out of the tunnel. The expected captains and assistant captains are supposed to come from the group of 7 upperclassmen(Noonan, Moscatel, MacGregor, Ronan, Moccia, Hohmann, and Rodrgiues). Ultimately, they will all have to be leaders due to the amount of youth on this team

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