BOSTON--I think I may have wrote this same introduction last year, but staring out into a barren Fleet Center, I was feeling rather--yellow.
The genius that designed the Fleet Center decided that all the seats should be painted that color, and from the bird's eye view of the press box, I saw it in all its canary brilliance.
Because the simple truth is nobody really cares about the Beanpot consolation game. If the whole tournament is a battle for Boston bragging rights, then this game is a Battle for the Boston Basement (or the right to stay out of it) with a suitably sized crowd to match.
But senior goaltender J.R. Prestifilippo didn't care. Entering the game, he was 0-for-his career in the Beanpot, and he gave his darndest to erase that blemish on his record.
And for once, Prestifilippo's effort was enough. Harvard crawled out of Boston with a 3-1 victory over Northeastern.
"I think we were very fortunate to come away with a win," Harvard Coach Mark Mazzoleni said. "The difference in the game was [Prestifilippo]."
The Crimson defense--or lack thereof--certainly made "Presto" earn it. After just slightly outchancing the Crimson in the first period, the Huskies poured on the shots in the second. Northeastern outshot Harvard 19-2 in the middle period, and for once a shot total accurately reflected the relative play.
With just over two minutes left in the period, Husky center Roger Holeczy lifted a backhander in the slot on a rebound, which Prestifilippo waffled away--after stopping two previous shots.