Three nights after taking a big step forward with a 6-0 thrashing of Vermont, the Harvard men’s hockey team regressed with a 4-0 loss to Boston College in the consolation game of the 50th Beanpot Tournament held at the Fleet Center.
The loss was the fourth for the Crimson (10-10-3, 9-5-2 ECAC) in its last five games and sixth straight to the Eagles (15-13-2, 7-10-1 Hockey East).
Harvard’s last-place finish in the Beanpot was its second in as many years and ran its losing streak in the tournament to four games. The Crimson’s last win in the ‘Pot came on Feb. 14, 2000 when it defeated Northeastern, 3-1, in the consolation game.
BC got two goals from its star players in the first period and never looked back.
After killing Harvard’s first power play chance of the night, sophomore winger Tony Voce skated in and beat Crimson goaltender Will Crothers five-hole at 9:53 of the opening period. The goal came off a nice feed from sophomore center Ty Hennes and was Voce’s team-leading 22nd tally of the season.
The Eagles’ impressive team speed allowed them to carry the momentum following the goal. They made it 2-0 when sophomore center Ben Eaves—recently back from a ten-game layoff due to a rib injury—capitalized on a two-on-one with 4:27 to play in the first period.
Eaves was a unanimous selection to the Hockey East All-Rookie Team last season after posting 13 goals and 26 assists in his first season. And even though he has missed 15 games this year, he is still second to Voce for the team scoring lead.
“[Voce and Eaves] buried the two plays that had to be made in the first period,” Harvard Coach Mark Mazzoleni said. “We knew coming in that we needed to get a fast start against them, but they put us in a position where we had to play catch-up. I thought we had our chances, but we didn’t capitalize on them.”
The Eagles didn’t waste any time as the second period opened. Less than a minute after play recommenced, Crothers was able to stop a shot from the left faceoff circle by BC centerman Ales Dolinar, but junior winger Anthony D’Arpino pounced on the rebound and potted it for a 3-0 Eagle advantage.
The Crimson picked up its play after the goal, but the stellar goaltending of BC freshman Matti Kaltiainen kept it off the board. Kaltiainen finished the game with 22 saves.
The Eagles added another score in the game’s final moments, when junior defenseman Bill Cass redirected a Brett Peterson shot past Crothers with just 1:22 to go.
“That was a very good effort for our club,” said Boston College Coach Jerry York. “It was nothing fancy, though. We checked well and [Kaltiainen] played well in goal.”
Crothers equaled his Eagle counterpart with 22 saves of his own.
Harvard has six regular season games remaining, all of them ECAC contests. The Crimson will embark on a crucial trip to the North Country to face Clarkson and St, Lawrence.