By Arielle Aronson/DFP Staff
Consolation games are not fun to play in, but they are not insignificant either. The No. 15 Boston University may not have had a Beanpot trophy to play for in their game against Harvard Monday, but beating the Crimson would have helped the Terriers as far as the NCAA tournament selection is concerned.
Despite this, BU came out flat with minimal effort and thus fell to Harvard 5-4 on Monday night. BU has not finished last in the Beanpot since 1980, and this year’s team will hold the embarrassing place in program history as one of only four BU squads in the 59 years of the tournament to not win a Beanpot game.
“We didn’t compete anywhere near as much as we should have,” BU coach Jack Parker said. “It was a shock to be in this game for one thing and we should have responded better because of that.”
Effort was the issue for BU as it was obvious throughout Monday night’s game that the Terriers simply did not care to compete hard enough to win, They did not care to respond to their first round loss by performing in a consolation game.
The effort on Monday night was laughable compared to the opener, when BU looked like an NCAA tournament-worthy team. This Monday, they looked more like they were attending the game rather than actually playing in it.
“It was nothing really in particular that was any different than any other day,” junior co-captain Chris Connolly said. “We just for whatever reason didn’t come focused tonight. That hopefully won’t come back to bite us, but that was our last out-of-conference game. We’ll see.”
The Terriers threw pucks lazily around the ice, struggled to penetrate the offensive zone, and gave up five goals to the worst offense in the country. Even junior goaltender Kieran Millan, who had been a stalwart in net recently, looked porous.
In the second period, the Terriers were sitting on a 1-0 lead and Harvard pounced. The Crimson potted three goals in 1:13, two of which should have been somewhat routine saves for Millan. The second Crimson goal came off a shot from the right face-off dot while the third was a throw-away shot from the corner that somehow eluded Millan.
“My club wasn’t ready to make sure they got that W,” Parker said. “I was extremely disappointed in just about everybody on my club.”
The blame for the loss rests on everybody’s shoulders, and Connolly was not making excuses for his role in BU’s poor attitude.
“I take it personally,” Connolly said. “I think it’s a reflection of myself, Dave and Joe as being leaders that the team isn’t ready. It starts from the top down with us, and it filtered all the way through. It’s tough to see and hopefully we can do a good job this week to turn that around.”
Junior assistant captain Dave Warsofsky is the epitome of players who need to turn things around. After being benched on Friday night for not playing up to his capabilities, Warsofsky responded on Monday night by posting a team-worst minus-3 rating. He bumbled a few plays at the blue line and was lucky to get an assist when Alex Chiasson tipped a soft shot from Warsofsky at the point behind Harvard netminder Ryan Carroll.
It is easy to dismiss the lack of effort from the entire team as a part of playing in a consolation game, but the Terriers took Harvard for granted. With a somewhat easy stretch in their schedule coming up, the Terriers will need to make the mental adjustments necessary in understanding that every game is important, no matter the opponent.
“We didn’t come out ready for a big game, and like I said, it was our last out-of-conference game so these last six are very important,” Connolly said. “We’ll take them one at a time and we can’t look past any of them. That message has to be sent starting tomorrow.”