By Arielle Aronson/DFP Staff
ORONO, Maine -- Earlier in the month, Boston University senior captain Joe Pereira said the month of January would determine whether BU was too young or ready to play. On Friday night, the No. 16 Terriers proved they were very ready to play and win over the No. 12 University of Maine. Despite a Black Bear barrage of three goals in 1:12, the Terriers clawed their way back to a 4-3 victory.
“We’ve had a lot of games where we’ve been down and come back,” BU coach Jack Parker said. “We wouldn’t have won this game last year, I’ll tell you that. This team has been competitive all year long.”
Junior forward Corey Trivino started the scoring for the Terriers at 11:52 in the first period. Trivino gathered a puck at the blue line and outhustled a Maine defender into the zone and toward the net, where Trivino finished with a simple flip of the puck over the blocker.
The teams traded goals in bursts during the second period. Maine started the scoring at 5:45 in the second when junior forward Spencer Abbott collected a tape-to-tape pass at the blue line and then unloaded a slapper with eyes from the upper right circle to beat junior goaltender Kieran Millan.
Only 21 seconds later, Abbott replicated the score by faking a slap-shot from the same spot and then lifting a wrister over Millan to give Maine a 2-1 lead, its first lead of the night.
At 6:16, sophomore forward Justin Courtnall was called for a slashing penalty. Maine wasted no time converting, scoring only 14 seconds later when senior forward Tanner House found an Adam Clendening turnover in the slot and blasted it past Millan to give Maine its third goal in 1:12.
After the goal, Parker gave his team some time to compose themselves.
“To our credit, it’s 3-1 and we don’t wilt,” Parker said. “I just said we’re playing really well. We gave up three goals in a minute and 10 seconds. Relax. Go play again.”
So BU did just that. At 11:46 in the second, sophomore forward Alex Chiasson narrowed the game to a 3-2 Maine lead when he caught a backhanded pass from freshman forward Matt Nieto. Chiasson was knocked to his knees but got a shot off anyway, beating Sirman low.
Twenty-eight seconds later, sophomore forward Wade Megan netted the equalizer when he snapped a shot past Sirman five-hole.
“They came back and scored three goals on us and then we came back in the game with two goals right away,” Chiasson said. “It just shows a lot of resilience on our team and our guys play for 60 minutes.”
Junior assistant captain David Warsofsky scored the game-winning goal at 3:43 in the third period. Chiasson found Warsofsky charging into the slot and fed him the puck, which Warsofsky ripped past Sirman to give BU the 4-3 lead.
“I came in pretty late so I think they may have all been a little mesmerized by Alex walking around the corner with the puck,” Warsofsky said. “I kind of got lost in the crowd. Whenever you can find space like that in the slot you’ve got to bear down and bury your chances. When the puck goes in, you’re always happy.”
BU was especially happy for that puck to be the game-winning one. The Terriers now have two of four important points secured for this weekend. They also still have a chance to finish a tough five-game stretch with a 3-2 record should they win Saturday night’s game.
Most importantly, however, the Terriers showed a will to win even after falling behind against an offensively loaded Maine team. BU will need to maintain that attitude if it is planning on a weekend sweep in Orono.
“It’s going to be a tough night, obviously,” Warsofsky said. “The crowd is going to be into it again and obviously they’re going to try to get some points so it’s going to be even harder to win tomorrow night.”