Friday, April 24, 2015

Senior Series Post #3: Evan Rodrigues

This is the third and final of our senior series posts for this season. You can read Cason Hohmann's here and Anthony Moccia's here.

                                                       Photo by Associated Press

Evan Rodrigues is a great hockey player in every aspect of the game. He could have played any position on the ice at any given time besides maybe goalie and been successful doing so. Rodrigues racked up an impressive 121 points in his playing career including 61 this past season which was good for second in the nation. "Erod" has come so far from his freshman campaign where he struggled to adjust to the pace of the college game at first as most freshman not named Jack Eichel do. The thing I remember most from Rodrigues' freshman year is him making one of his patented spin moves to deke out a D but then he would lose an edge or lose the puck and the play wouldn't finish developing. The difference between those days and now is huge. David Quinn called Rodrigues the smartest hockey player he has ever coached and he demonstrated his faith in him with ice time distribution. Rodrigues played the point on the powerplay and even took some draws as a dman with penalties expiring throughout the year no matter what zone the draw was in. Rodrigues is a complete hockey player with a large amount of talent that has only grown with hard work over his four years at BU.

 As a member of a 3 man freshman class, which would fall to 2 once Alexx Privitera left the program at the end of their sophomore year, There was tremendous pressure on both Rodrigues and fellow assistant captain Cason Hohmann to produce for this team the last two seasons. There are very few college hockey teams that can succeed without getting much production from a class especially your seniors(just ask Jerry York this past season). Rodrigues and Hohmann were counted for both leadership and production and they brought a lot of both.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Senior Series Post #2 Cason Hohmann

This is the second Senior Series post. You can read the first one on Anthony Moccia here.

Cason Hohmann gave 110% on every shift for his four years at Boston University. That is fact not opinion.  Hohmann was the heart and soul of this year's team along with fellow senior Evan Rodrigues. Hohmann put up 92 points in his career for the Terriers and it felt like he hit 92 posts too. He may have been snakebitten at times but he never let that affect his effort level. Hohmann was always going as hard as possible for the Terriers whether he was  healthy or playing through a shoulder injury that seemed to plague him throughout his career.

                                                    Photo by Maya Devereaux/Daily Free Press

The smallest forward on the team never let his size or lack thereof be an excuse or define what type of player he would be. He was not afraid to block a shot or dig out pucks in the corner. He was not afraid to take a hit to make a play. He was a very underrated playmaker and it showed this year as he was the one constant on the second line. He played with Evan Rodrigues, Ahti Oksanen, JJ Piccinich, AJ Greer, Robbie Baillargeon, and Nik Olsson during the year. All of those guys produced when they played with him. That isn't by accident. He is a great offensive player and an even better back checker/penalty killer.

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Senior Series Post #1 : Anthony Moccia

This is the first of our senior series posts where we recognize each member of this year's senior class.

                                                 Photo by Maya Devereaux/Daily Free Press

It's not that often that multiple head coaches and 5 years of teammates have such high praise for their third goalie but not many people never mind third goalies are as great as Anthony Moccia. Moccia went relatively unnoticed his freshman year as he served the practice goalie for the Terriers in 2010-2011. He was bumped up to the roster his sophomore year after the graduation of Adam Kraus. Moccia would dress in 26 games on the NCAA tournament bound 2011-2012 Terriers. Moccia dressed for 20 more games his junior season and also would be elected to the Hockey East All Academic team. He would repeat this feat his senior season as well as make his game debut against the hipsters from UVM. Moccia would come back for an additional season as he completed a 5 year bachelors/masters degree in health sciences. This past season Moccia was often leaned on as an emotional leader as well as the two appearances he made in the regular season finale and HE quarterfinals.

Guest Post: The Importance of Captain Gryz's return

Editor's note: This is the first  guest post that we have received this offseason. We will post basically anything that people submit because we are a blog of the people(unless it is pro BC or anti-BU) so feel free to submit a post about anything you feel like you want to talk about. If it's a pro-BC post, we will just change your words and make fun of you so I wouldn't recommend doing that. Thank you to Jacob Reiser who submitted this post.

Despite a heartbreaking loss in the NCAA finals, Terriers captain Matt Grzelyck already has his sights set on the future, and it does not involve him wearing black and gold just yet. Obviously it hurts to lose but I’m going to be motivated more than ever to come back stronger next season,” Grzelyck remarked postgame. “Obviously we had a great year and now we have to build off it.”

 Many people already know the Terrier defenseman’s story due to his tremendous success this season, but I’ll repeat it for emphasis. Gryz grew up a stone’s throw away from TD Garden, his dad working as a member of the bull gang that turns over Celtics and Bruins games. If there was open ice, Gryz’s dad would let him come down and skate, and boy, could he skate. After suffering a season-ending injury during a practice in January of his sophomore year, he came back with a vengeance, scoring 10 goals, including the OT winner at the Beanpot, and tallying 28 assists.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Weekend Recap

The BU Terriers fell to the Providence College Friars in the national championship game on Saturday night at TD Garden. The 4-3 loss is certainly one that fans through college hockey will remember for a while. If you want to read about the actual game(I don't), you can head over to the Daily Free Press who has some great content as always. The loss certainly stings and will for a while with the 3-2 lead that the Terriers held with ten minutes remaining. A lot of press has been made over the bad luck bounce goalie Matt O'Connor was subject to which lead to the tying goal on a harmless flip from center ice. There was nothing that he necessarily did wrong on the play except not realize that he had the puck or that it had left his glove. The BU defense got beat on the game winner moments later and could never find a way to beat soon to be former PC goalie Jon Gillies.

First off, congrats to PC on their first national title. I truly believe that PC is 95% of HE fans second favorite time in the league so it was not surprising to see the support for them. I probably would have been rooting for PC if they were playing any other team in the country besides Alaska because the Nanooks are awesome. Nate Leaman certainly turned that program around in a hurry with some big time help from Gillies who put the team on his back on numerous occasions the last three seasons. There is also the nice storyline of  Drew Brown who overcame cancer and returned to the team last week to be with them at the Frozen Four. Congrats to them but with that said, I want BU to crush them twice next season.

As for BU, Saturday night obviously sucked. The Terriers were very good in the third period all year long but just didn't get the bounces or play well in the third on Saturday. As a fan, it was difficult to take but the worst part of it is watching the team on the ice after the final horn. That is what stings the most. They put everything they had into this season and to come so close without achieving the ultimate goal.  Every BU fan should be grateful for what this team did this year. Coming into the season, if you asked a BU fan if they would take a Frozen Four appearance this year without a title I think 99% of them would say the team would have exceeded expectations considering how young they are.

Realizing it's the last time you will see guys in a BU jersey is always the worst part of the end of the season.Having to watch guys so depressed especially the seniors who did everything they could to change the culture of the team from some low points off the ice in 2012 and on the ice last year to a National runner-up was a very tough thing to do. This team certainly has plenty to be proud of winning both HE titles, the Beanpot and having the Hobey Baker Award winner on the roster. The seniors class was a small one but certainly played a huge impact on this program and the turnaround of success from their freshman year to now. Each of them will have their own post sometime next week but every BU fan should be grateful what Anthony Moccia, Evan Rodrigues and Cason Hohmann contributed to this team during their time on Comm Ave. You can even buy them a beer now and not be committing a NCAA violation! They certainly will not easily be replaced next season.

The immediate reaction once the season ends for some people is to immediately look towards next season. There will be decisions to be made in the coming days/weeks for 5-6 underclassmen who will have opportunities in professional hockey. Juniors Ahti Oksanen, Danny O'Regan and Matt O'Connor will all have professional opportunities if they chose to do so. Junior captain Matt Grzelcyk has already told the Boston Herald that he will return for his senior season which means the entire defensive corps will remain the same besides the addition of U-18 dman Charlie MacAvoy who will certainly push for playing time as well. The big factor for next year's team will be the status of freshman Hobey Baker Winner Jack Eichel. Everyone has heard the story by now  as he will go #2 in the draft this summer behind only overrated Canadian Connor McDavid. The team that Eichel goes to will have an impact on if he returns to BU for one more season or turns pro immediately following the draft. My personal feeling is that if he goes to Buffalo who will have the 1st or 2nd pick depending on the lottery next weekend, he will be pushed harder to go pro immediately than if he lands in Arizona who is the favorite to get the #2 pick as of now. Both teams are in a full rebuild but Arizona's GM has already touted BU as a great place for draft picks to develop when they traded for BU recruit Maxim Letunov a few months ago. The other factor at play is that Arizona native Auston Matthews is the favorite to go #1 in the 2016 NHL Draft and the best way to tank for a local high profile player is keep Eichel at BU for another year. The other benefit would be having an additional year of Eichel in his prime before he can hit unrestricted free agency.  It will certainly be an interesting storyline to follow this summer but the future is looking bright for Terrier hockey regardless of what happens this summer.

Thanks to everyone for reading/following us on Twitter this season. It was certainly a fun year and will be a fun summer. If you aren't already excited about next year's team, then you should go get your brain checked out.

Friday, April 10, 2015

National Championship Preview: Bring on Providence

                                                                   Jason Kupra/AP
The BU Terriers continued to roll along through their schedule barely breaking a sweat against the North Dakota redacted nicknames. The Terriers rolled to a 4-1 lead after two and only let North Dakota back in momentarily to give them a glimmer of hope. Jack Eichel scored the first and last goal for the Terriers as Brandon Hickey, AJ Greer and Doyle Somerby all scored goals of their own to lead the Terriers to victory. Much of the talk after the game was a high stick by Evan Rodrigues on North Dakota captain Stephane Pattyn. The high stick came after Pattyn took two quick cheapshot jabs to Ahti Oksanen's face and left North Dakota fans a reason to whine and make excuse for their inability to win National Championships. The fact of the matter is Rodrigues barely touched him and Pattyn deserved it after taking cheap shots after the whistle all game .

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Frozen Four Preview Part I : Respectful Swagger

This weekend the Boston University Terriers will see their season end regardless of the outcome. The bad news is that the season is almost over but the good news is that it could end with the Terriers skating around TD Garden with a trophy for the third time this season. This victory lap would be the most important of them all. Their opponent in the national semifinal (aka national championship game) on Thursday will be the North Dakota Fighting Sioux.  A fun fact about North Dakota is that their state legislation tried twice to drop the North from the state name so that the state would be just Dakota. This has happened as recently as 1989. It would have been absolutely wild if the name dropped from 4 words to just one "Dakota (nicknames to be determined later)". On to the actual hockey, North Dakota is the regular season NCHC champion but did not win their conference tournament. They got to the Frozen Four by beating Quinnipiac and St. Cloud State in their Fargo regional. They beat a team that barely got in and that finished the year two games over .500...