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Prospect Update: Madsen, Harvard capture Beanpot Tour

Flyers goaltending prospect backstops Crimson to first Beanpot title in 24 years

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

Merrick Madsen stopped 14 of 17 shots as Harvard took home the Beanpot Tournament title with a 6-3 win over a powerhouse Boston University squad on Monday.

The win was Harvard's 11th overall Beanpot Championship, but first since 1993. The annual tournament, which pits all four Boston area Division I men's ice hockey colleges against each other (Boston University, Boston College, Northeastern and Harvard) for a mini tournament, dates back to the 1952-53 season.

In the first game, Harvard edged Northeastern by a score of 4-3 with Madsen stopping 27 of 30 shots directed at him, including 15 shots in the final period to hold on for the win.

Monday's victory was also Madsen's sixth consecutive win for Harvard, who has also gone undefeated in their last eight games, going 7-0-1, and holds the #3 ranking in NCAA Men's D-I hockey.

Madsen has appeared in all 25 games for Harvard and now owns an 18-5-2 record to go along with a 2.25 goals-against average and .916 save percentage. The 18 wins matches his career high from last season, his first full year.

The Beanpot is the latest of career accomplishments Madsen can add to his resume. Early in his first full year of action, he was named the MVP of The Shillelagh Tournament, hosted annually during the NCAA D-I season at the University of Notre Dame, where he stopped 60 of 61 shots he faced to lead Harvard to the title.

Selected in the sixth round at 162nd overall of the 2013 NHL Entry Draft, Madsen committed to playing for Harvard before he was even drafted. Prior to entering college, most of his education came from being home schooled, while his entire Freshman season he played all of 37 minutes of behind full-time starter, Steve Michalek.

Fast forward two years later and it's Madsen's turn to own Crimson's crease as last season became a coming out party for the 6'5", 190-pound junior from Acton, California. 

He took control of the starting goaltender's job after a battle in training camp and earned his first ever NCAA start on opening night, stopping all 25 shots for a shutout.

From there he began his collegiate career with a perfect 7-0-2 record and had four shutouts in his first nine starts to finish with an 18-6-3 record, a .933 save percentage and 1.95 GAA in 28 appearances.

Back to present day, Madsen has shown no signs of slowing down and a trip to last year's NCAA tournament has him looking for a deeper run and hopes to end another long championship drought with the Crimson. Their last and only NCAA title came 28 years ago in 1989.

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