If it weren't for the first period, Harvard would have won a stunning 5-1 hockey victory over Boston University last night at Watson Rink. Unfortunately it's not two out of three, and despite a last minute rally that nearly tied the game for the Crimson, B.U. skated off with a 6-5 win.
Harvard came out showing the signs of a grueling road trip and without the services of Jim Thomas and Leigh Hogan, who were injured in the Clarkson contest. The Terriers took a quick 4-0 lead before the Crimson shot past B.U. goalie Ed Walsh for a score. The stanza ended with the Terriers out in front 5-1.
The first period was sponsored by the letter 'B'. 'B' stands for Boston University, Buckton (Bill), Bannerman (Chris), Bishop (Bill), Burlington (Bill) and bombardment. It was all 'B' after Rick Meagher scored with only 50 seconds in the contest.
Buckton took a perfect pass in close to beat Crimson netminder John Aiken at 5:17. Bannerman followed with a slap shot deflection past Aiken at 6:31. Bishop made it 4-0 at 8:15 and it looked as though B.U. would blow Harvard out of the rink.
Danny Bolduc put the puck past the seemingly impenetrable Walsh at 10:37 to cut the Terriers' lead. Burlington however, hiked it back to 5-1 three minutes later on a power play score.
Score on Power Play
The second period belonged to Walsh, as Harvard finally got it together and mounted some offense. The Crimson took 12 shots on net, two more than B.U.'s second period total, but Walsh stopped all except one. The one he missed came off the stick of Randy Roth on Harvard's third power play opportunity.
The Crimson had eight man-advantage situations in the penalty-filled tilt, but converted on only two. Inspired by Walsh's spectacular goaltending the Terriers held off the Harvard attack for two minutes in the middle period with a two man disadvantage.
It was a heart stopper in the final period, as Harvard scored three goals and came a whisker away from a fourth in the last minute. Following Mike Eruzione's tally that proved to be the game winner at 8:32, Levy Byrd discovered a chink in Walsh's armor. His weak shot dribbled between the Terrier goaltender's legs and the crowd and the team came alive.
Bolduc notched his second of the evening on a pass from Bob Goodenow off the face-off at 17:47. Roth brought Harvard within one at 19:14 just as the Crimson power play had expired and it looked as though Harvard would pull it out.
With a sixth skater on the ice, the Crimson pressed for the final half minute. With just two seconds remaining on the clock, the referee whistled a face-off in front of the B.U. net and there was still a glimmer of hope. But the Terriers won the face-off and the game.
Walsh proved to be the margin of difference, as both he and Aiken made 33 saves during the evening.