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Beanpot: 2011 BC and NU Advance

by Staff Writer / Boston Bruins
BOSTON – It was the battle of the backstops in the semifinal round of the 59th Annual Beanpot Tournament, as Northeastern University defeated Harvard University in the first game 4-0 and Boston College took down Boston University in the late tilt, 3-2, Monday night in TD Garden.

NU and BC walked away with victories thanks in large part to stellar performances from netminders Chris Rawlings (41 saves) and John Muse (34 saves), respectively.  

The two teams will square off in the championship game on Monday, Feb 14 in TD Garden at 7:30 p.m.  

Boston College 3, Boston University 2, OT
Cross (photo: Babineau)
Boston Bruins prospect Tommy Cross scored the game-winning goal in overtime to propel the Boston College Eagles to the Beanpot championship game.  

Cross, who was drafted by the Bruins in the second round (35th overall) in the 2007 NHL Entry Draft buried a power play goal from the left point to give the Eagles the win just 3:17 into the overtime period.  

“We were on the power play, obviously, and talked a lot about getting pucks to the net and it was a great play by our center," Cross said after the game. "Jimmy (Hayes) won the face off and snapped it right back, and the wingers came in to help push it back.”

“I just took a step to the middle and our guys went to the net and I just kind of got it by the first group of guys to under the net and it found its way in.”

The Eagles struck first when Philip Samuelsson found the back of the net against BU goaltender Kieran Millan (37 saves) for his fourth goal of the year.  

But the Terriers answered quickly and tied the score just 38 seconds later, with a goal from sophomore forward Alex Chaisson.  

BU struck again early in the second period when Cody Trivino buried a point-blank opportunity from the slot to best BC goaltender John Muse (34 saves) for his sixth goal of the year and the Terriers' second of the game.  

Boston College outshot the Terriers 14-8 in the second period and it looked like the Eagles slipped one past Millan at 17:53 but the lamp never lit. The referees went to a video replay and determined that the puck never completely crossed the goal line -- no goal for the Eagles and another save for Millan.  

“In general, it was a very, very exciting game. It was a game that I thought we played with a lot of poise. That is the best team in the nation and we played head-to-head with them,” said Boston University Head Coach Jack Parker.

“This is actually one of the youngest teams I have coached. This team is growing up right in front of me. I am pleased with their effort tonight.”

Boston College tied it up early in the third with a goal from senior forward Joe Whitney, but it was BC’s Cross who scored the game-winner in overtime.  

“I thought that was a terrific college hockey game,” said Boston College assistant coach Mike Cavanaugh. “You had everything in that game. Lead changes, breakaways being stopped by both goaltenders, excitement with special teams in the end.”

Northeastern 4, Harvard 0
Fallstrom (photo: Babineau)
In the Beanpot's opening match-up between Northeastern University and Harvard University, Huskies goaltender Chris Rawlings (8-9-6) made 41 saves en route to his seventh career shutout as Northeastern defeated Harvard 4-0.   

“Shutouts are great and all, but I was just more focused on the team winning the game,” Rawlings said.  

Backed by two goals from junior center Mike McLaughlin, the Huskies won their first round match-up for the first time since they defeated Boston College 6-1 in the opening game of the 2009 tournament.   

“Unfortunately, those are the memories for a lot of the Northeastern people over the last twenty years…near misses,” Huskies Head Coach Greg Cronin said of Northeastern’s lack of a Beanpot title since 1988.  

Northeastern started off the scoring mid-way through the first period with McLaughlin’s first goal of the game, his second in five Beanpot games.  

“It is just nice to contribute,” McLaughlin said after the game.  

The Huntington Hounds raised the scoring bar in the second period, netting three goals.  

The Harvard Crimson battled throughout the night outshooting the Huskies 41-31, but couldn’t find the back of the net behind Rawlings.  

“I thought they outplayed us in pretty much every facet of the game, form the net on out,” Harvard Head Coach and former Boston Bruins forward Ted Donato said after the game.  

“You have to give them a lot of credit.”

Boston Bruins prospect and Crimson forward Alex Fallstrom recorded two shots on goal and registered a minus-1 in the game, but was also involved in many of Harvard’s scoring opportunities early in the game.

“We had some chances in the first period. (Fallstrom) had a lot of nets to shoot up where the puck just [never] sat down on him,” added Donato. “Ultimately, one player doesn’t decide the game.”

The Huskies move to 9-11-6 on the season and 34-83 all-time in the Beanpot. They’ll look to continue their recent success when they visit UMass-Lowell on Friday in an in-between Beanpot tilt with the Riverhawks.  

Harvard (4-18-0) will look to get back on the winning track on Friday when they host Princeton in a conference match-up.  

Boston U. (13-8-7) will square off against Harvard in the consolation game next Monday at 4:30 p.m.  

---Hannah Becker
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