CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. – For the first time in program history the Holy Cross varsity men's hockey team defeated No. 7 Boston College, 5-4, at the Kelley Rink at Conte Forum on Friday afternoon in non-conference action. With the win, the Crusaders advance to 4-9-0 overall, while the Eagles fall to 8-4-2 overall. This victory was Holy Cross' fifth win over a nationally ranked team in program history and the third versus a top 10 team. This is the first ever win by an Atlantic Hockey team versus Boston College. The last time Boston College lost to a non-conference opponent at home was on Oct. 14, 2011 when they fell to Denver, 4-2. Freshman Mike Barrett (Orland Park, Ill.) posted two goals and one assist for the Crusaders and earned the first star of the game. Sophomore Matt Vidal (Manorville, N.Y.) tallied two assists and scored a goal which earned him the second star of the game.
After 12 minutes of scoreless play, the Crusaders made it onto the board at 12:24. Sophomore Joe McNamara (Chestnut Hill, Mass.) took the puck inside the blue line and sent a shot into the BC defensive zone. Barrett deflected the puck to tip it past BC goaltender Thatcher Demko and bring the Crusaders ahead 1-0. Less than a minute later, at 13:19, Barrett sent the puck up the ice to Vidal who took the initial shot causing a rebound. Sophomore Castan Sommer (Shrewsbury, Mass.) picked up Vidal's rebound in the corner of the crease on the stick side, pulled it around the crease and beat Demko glove side to make the score 2-0 for the Crusaders. The Eagles' Kevin Hayes brought the puck down stick side of junior goaltender Matt Ginn (Lindsay, Ontario) and took a shot from the circle that beat Ginn over his left shoulder to bring the Eagles within one at 14:53. With just over two minutes remaining in the period the Crusaders turned the puck over in the goal circle on Ginn's right side allowing BC to take a shot that Ginn snatched up in his glove.
In the second period, sophomore Brett Lubanski (Farmington Hills, Mich.) gave the puck to sophomore Tim Driscoll (Hingham, Mass.), who crossed the puck off the boards to senior assistant captain Adam Schmidt (Warrington, Pa.). Schmidt tipped the puck around the BC defenseman to himself. Schmidt flew up the ice and beat Demko top shelf over the glove on the near side at 8:00. About 12 minutes into the second, Sommer got the puck from a shuffle after the faceoff. Sommer gave the puck to Vidal who passed the puck to Barrett. Barrett took the puck and beat Demko over the glove for his second goal of the game giving the Crusaders a 4-1 lead at 12:09. Sophomore Jake Bolton (Ellington, Conn.) took the puck in the Crusader defensive zone and sent it up ice to Nick Finn (Canton, Mass.). Finn crossed the puck over to Vidal who sent it high glove side into the net. Demko tried to make the save, but the puck flew over his glove at 16:53 giving the Crusaders a 5-1 lead.
On a 4-on-4 opportunity in the third period the Eagles capitalized. Hayes took the puck around the boards and out to the blue line where he left the puck off for Danny Linnell. From the faceoff circle Linell crossed to Ryan Fitzgerald who drew Ginn out and beat him far side to make the score 5-2 in Holy Cross' favor. Quinn Smith took a shot high off the glass that came out to Michael Sit. Sit sent the puck to Linell at the blue line who sent it back to Sit in the circle. Sit fired the shot in to bring the Eagles within two at 15:31. The Eagles scored just 27 seconds later when Johnny Gaudreau sent the puck from behind to Hayes to bring the score to 5-4. With 3:32 remaining in the game the Eagles went on a power play. With 1:43 left the Eagles pulled Demko in favor of an extra attacker for a last chance effort to force overtime. Ginn made three huge saves for the Crusaders in the last minute and a half of the game to secure the Crusader victory.
Ginn made 34 saves on 38 shots during the game while Demko made 13 saves on the Crusaders' 18 shots. Neither team was able to convert a power play, but the Crusaders killed off all four of the Eagles' opportunities. Both Vidal and Barrett recorded three point games during the contest. Vidal's three points marked a career best points and assists and his first collegiate multi-point game. Barrett only took two shots on goal during the contest, but both were able to make it past the Boston College defense.
The Crusaders return to action on Friday and Saturday, Dec. 6-7 when they host a weekend series against Atlantic Hockey opponent Air Force with a 7:00 p.m. puck drop.
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Tickets for the Holy Cross men's ice hockey game versus Bentley at Fenway Park on Saturday, Dec. 28, 2013 as part of Citi Frozen Fenway 2014 are on sale now via www.redsox.com/frozenfenway or by calling the Red Sox Ticket Office at 877-733-7699. Tickets range from $10 to $50. The Atlantic Hockey contest is scheduled for a 6:30 p.m. start.