Evan Rodrigues Hat Trick Not Enough in Terriers Loss

By Ethan Leavitt
BU News Service

Even though senior Evan Rodrigues netted his second hat-trick of the season, the No. 4 Boston University men’s ice hockey team fell 6-5 to Northeastern on Senior Night at Agganis Arena. It was the second time the two teams played each other this week, as BU defeated Northeastern in the Beanpot Final on Monday night.

BU failed in another opportunity to clinch the Hockey East regular-season title outright. They will enter their final game of the season tomorrow night two points ahead of second-place Boston College, which earned a 2-0 win at Notre Dame.

The momentum swung back and forth the entire game. Northeastern scored three goals in under two minutes to jump out to a 3-0 lead late in the first period. BU got back some momentum, however, scoring twice before the first-period horn sounded to make it a one-goal game despite the fact that they were outshot 20-7 in the period.

The Huskies stormed right back and put together another three-goal run to build a 6-2 cushion with 7:56 left in the second. Junior goaltender Matt O’Connor was pulled after the fifth Northeastern goal in favor of freshman Connor LaCouvee. BU staged another comeback, though, starting with a late second period goal by Rodrigues. Junior Ahti Oksanen scored his team-leading 20th goal of the year in the opening minute of the third on the power play to cut the deficit to 6-4. Rodrigues sealed his hat-trick with another power play goal with 5:43 remaining, but it wasn’t enough to overcome Northeastern.

Head coach David Quinn mentioned the lack of discipline as a difference in the game. He believed that Northeastern competed harder than his team did and they let their emotions get away from them as a result.

“You don’t need to be acting like Joe Tough Guy after the whistle pushing and shoving,” Quinn said. “I’m talking about taking a hit and going after 50-50 pucks. That’s hockey, and we didn’t have enough of that tonight against a really good hockey team.”

The two teams will meet for the third time in six days on Saturday night at Matthews Arena at 8 p.m. Given how much they have played one another recently, there should be no surprises.

“We’ll find out a lot about ourselves tomorrow night. That’s for sure,” Quinn said. “You play a team three times in a row, we better be ready to play like men tomorrow night.”

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