Boston College has a big Monday
There was finally some upheaval at the top of the rankings as Minnesota dropped out of the No. 1 slot for the first time in seven weeks. Boston College was the benefactor as the Eagles took over the top spot for the first time this season, then went out and won the Beanpot Tournament title. Here's the best and worst from the weekend.
Top ShelfThe best from the college hockey weekend
1. Five and one
Five: BC's Beanpot streak
The big news is that the Eagles have now gone five years without losing a Beanpot game. Monday night's championship game was a white-knuckler at Boston's TD Garden for the first 54 minutes of a 1-1 game. But the Eagles were able to outlast Northeastern by netting three goals in the third. The go-ahead goal came off the stick of Patrick Brown, whose remarkable, sprawling-on-the-ice redirect of Isaac MacLeod's shot from the point came with 5:30 left in regulation. They then got a Johnny Gaudreau empty-net goal and a breakaway goal from Brown with :50 left.
One: BC's national ranking
With Minnesota's two losses to Wisconsin over the weekend, the Eagles took over the top spot in the rankings. Not a bad Monday, huh?
2. The return of Kerdiles
The college hockey world is abuzz with Wisconsin's sweep of No. 1 Minnesota, by identical 2-1 scores, and the Badgers' sophomore forward Nic Kerdiles was a big reason for the second win. Having been out of the starting lineup for nearly a month due to playing in the World Junior Games and to an injury, Kerdiles got a diving pass to Grant Besse to start the scoring, then got the game-winning goal at the 4:33 mark of the third period. The Badgers entered the weekend 10 points back of Minnesota in the Big Ten standings but now sit just four points back with a record of 7-4-1-0 in conference play.
3. Second-coming of Archibald
Fans in Omaha, Neb., are seeing the second-coming of another great Archibald. It's not the mid-70s NBA point guard of the KC-Omaha Kings Nate "Tiny" Archibald; this time it's Nebraska-Omaha forward Josh Archibald. For the second time in five games, Archibald tallied a hat trick, netting three in Saturday's 6-3 win at North Dakota. Archibald scored a natural hat trick, including a power-play goal and the game-winner. With the win, UNO was able to pull into a third-place tie with UND in the NCHC standings.
4. He's a 10-second man
Talk about not wasting any time, Quinnipiac forward Connor Jones became the first player in NCAA history to score a goal in the first 10 seconds of a game twice in his career. Last weekend Jones scored eight seconds into the game at Dartmouth, an 8-1 win for the Bobcats. He pulled the trick again in Friday's 6-3 win over Clarkson, scoring at the 19:50 mark of the first period.
Off the CrossbarThe downside of college hockey this weekend
1. Minnesota's top line
Gophers goalie Adam Wilcox gave up four goals on 50 shots in losses at Wisconsin. But the blame should go to Minnesota's top line of Taylor Cammarata, Kyle Rau and Hudson Fasching, who managed only seven shots in the two games, three on Thursday and four on Friday. Credit the Wisconsin blueliners as well, but either way that was the key stat as to why the Gophers not only suffered their first loss since Nov. 29, but also their first sweep at the Kohl Center since 1999.
2. UNH's roller coaster continues
As good as New Hampshire looked last weekend in its sweep of then-No. 14 Notre Dame, it looked just as bad this week in 5-2 and 2-1 losses to Vermont. The Catamounts controlled the puck 68 percent of the time and scored both game-winning goals on power plays. While Vermont saw its RPI jump up to No. 14 after the sweep, UNH is now suddenly in dire straits, seeing it RPI plummet from No. 14 down to No. 24 and putting them out of NCAA at-large contention if the season ended today.
3. Cornell's special teams
OK, so it was only one game and didn't crush anyone's dreams, but that 6-1 loss at Colgate on Saturday was a bona fide stinker. The last time the Big Red lost was back on Nov. 30 and since then had been on a nine-game unbeaten streak at 5-0-4. But on Saturday they gave up three power-play goals and two 4-on-4 goals to the Raiders. Coming into the game, Cornell had given up 11 power-play goals all season, holding opponents to .126 percent conversion rate.
They Said It
Off The Radar
Penn State earned its first-ever Big Ten win on Saturday night with an impressive 4-0 win over No. 10 Michigan. Coming into the weekend, the Nittany Lions were 0-9-0 in conference games and lost on Friday night to the Wolverines 7-3. PSU frosh Zach Saar got the only goal the Lions needed at 5:31 of the first period. Goalie Matthew Skoff made 32 saves in his first shutout of the year.