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Harvard played its heart out and Bill Diercks gave a virtuoso performance in the goal, but the Beanpot will remain in the Back Bay for a third straight year. Boston University scored a goal in each of the first two periods then settled matters midway through the third. The finalists for the Boston championship traded goals late in the period to bring the tight, defensive sruggle to a 4-1 conclusion.
The Crimson skaters had won their last seven games, but this was the one they wanted the most, one they have been pointing toward since the season began, and before that since B.U. humiliated Harvard in the same situation two years ago. But the Terriers, who had wormed into the underdog role by virtue of several terribly off nights in recent weeks, played up to potential and reversed the upset they were dealt by Harvard in December.
The generally impeccable Harvard defense slipped for a minute in the first period and B.U. wing Serge Boily made it show on the scoreboard with a short-range shot at 14:26. Mickey Gray caught Harvard up ice and drove a shot from the Crimson blue line. The puck rebounded off the back boards past Diercks and Boily met it coming in at full speed, for the first period's only score.
The Terriers raised their lead to 2-0 in the second period at 9:08, one minute after killing a shotless Harvard power play. The Crimson defense missed one chance to clear the puck from its own zone before Larry Davenport emerged from a scramble with his 17th goal of the season.
A doubtful starter before the weekend, Davenport finished off a sloppy series with Dick Toomey and Mike Hyndman picking up assists.
The second Terrier tally took the life out of Harvard for the moment, with two spectacular exceptions.
With seven minutes to play Jack Garrity took a long bomb from Ben Smith at the B.U. blue line and skated in ahead of two defensemen. The Crimson captain faked once, pulled the puck to the left, and shot, to see the puck ricochet off goalie Jim McCann's sprawled-out leg.
Then with 20 seconds to play, Kent Parrot slipped a perfect pass through McCann to Ron Mark, but the sophomore wing couldn't find the handle as he skated with the puck past an open net.
Garrity led the Crimson skaters roaring onto the ice for a third-period comeback, but it was not Harvard's night. Smith's shot 30 seconds into the period lay frustratingly at the edge of the crease out of McCann's notice, but no Crimson player found it.
Parrot was wide with a shot, and Garrity just missed converting a pass from Bobby Bauer. Meanwhile Diercks almost singlehandedly held off the Terriers buzzing around his goal.
But with less than ten minutes to play, Smith's sloppy defense caught up with Harvard and B.U. captain Jack Parker pushed in Eddie Wright's pass from the edge of the crease.
Diercks was actually the last to touch the puck in an off-balance recovery attempt, and the same thing happened to McCann six minutes later.
George McManama got credit for the goal at 16:06 when heavy pressure from the Jack Turco-Dwight Ware-McManama line was capped by the goalie's knock-in.
The final goal came 70 seconds later: Dick Toomey hit the upper left corner fed by Mike Hyndman's pass. It was the only crisp goal of an evening, as Harvard had relaxed its taut coverage.
McCann received the Tourney's most-valuable-player award in recognition of one of the best performances of his life.
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