PHILADELPHIA, PA -- It was a back-and-forth affair between Boston College and Union on Thursday night but in the end, the Dutchmen were able to grab a hold of the momentum from a 5:00 penalty kill and edged the Eagles 5-4.
The loss brings an end to Johnny Gaudreau, Bill Arnold, and Boston College's season. They went 28-8-4 this year and were the second overall seed in the 2014 NCAA Tournament.
Down 3-2 early in the third period, the Eagles had a golden opportunity to take over the tightly-contested game when Matt Hatch was handed a 5:00 major and a game misconduct for checking from behind.
However, Union was able to quell any sort of offence Boston College tried to generate and ended up scoring their fourth goal of the night minutes after the major penalty had expired.
"They have a good P.K., good defensive team," Gaudreau said afterwards. "We didn't get enough shots to the net. And we didn't do what we were told to do on the power play. So we needed to get more shots."
Arnold concurred with his fellow Flames' prospect, noting that his club's inability to generate anything with the man advantage was a major factor in the game.
"We were just kind of out of sync there and not everyone's on the same page, maybe trying to force stuff too much, and you can't do that against a good penalty kill.
"You have to try not to get frustrated, and Coach called a timeout there. It starts with him, he's our leader. He stayed calm and kept us on point with the 4-3 there but couldn't get it tied up. Just gotta try to keep your composure and stay calm."
It was the Eagles who jumped out with a first period lead when Gaudreau was able to finish off a tremendous shift by Arnold. The pivot showed great patience after he gained entry into the zone, waiting for Kevin Hayes to find some space on the ice.
Hayes split the defence and Gaudreau was perched in position to scoop up a loose puck and score his 36th goal of the year.
Mat Bodie tied things up in the second period and then Daniel Ciampini beat Thatcher Demko to give Union a 2-1 lead at the 10:45 mark.
Boston College defenceman Steve Santini was able to bury a rocket of a shot late in the second period to tie things up but Ciampini struck again at 6:31 of the third period to give Union another lead.
Mike Vecchione potted the Dutchmen's next goal, which came right after the 5:00 major had expired, to make it 4-2 but Ryan Fitzgerald was able to pull Boston College within a goal shortly after.
Ciampini completed his hat trick with an empty-netter, making it 5-3 Union late in the game, but the Eagles never gave in. Captain Patrick Brown scored at 19:55 and Gaudreau somehow managed to get a shot off with just three seconds remaining in regulation.
Both Flames prospects finished off career-year's with the Eagles. Gaudreau leads the nation in scoring with 36 goals and 80 points in 40 games. Arnold, who is third in team scoring and sixth in the nation, finished off his senior season with 14 goals and 53 points through 40 outings.
The Flames drafted Gaudreau in fourth round in 2011 and Arnold in the fourth round of the 2010 NHL Draft.