Hockey East Preview- Boston University Terriers

BY: JEREMY LEOPOLD

Head Coach – David Quinn (2nd season)

Last Season – 10-21-4 (HE: 5-12-3) 9th place

Losses – D Patrick MacGregor, D Garret Noonan, F Jake Moscatel, F/D Matt Ronan, D J.D Carrabino, F Brendan Collier, G Anthony Moccia

Newcomers– F Brandon Fortunato, F Jake Eichel, F Chase Phelps, F Nikolas Olsson, F A.J. Greer,F J.J. Piccinich D John MacLeod, D Brien Diffley, D Brandon Hickey, G Connor LaCouvee

With a new face behind the bench for the first time in 40 years, the Terriers took a major step backwards.

Coach David Quinn inherited a young team from his mentor and long time BU fixture  Jack Parker and they didn’t have the kind of season you would expect from a storied program like BU. They finished 9th in the conference and couldn’t keep the puck out of their own net, finishing tied for last in the conference in scoring defense. Their offense was a little better but not by much, finishing tied for 8th in the conference in scoring offense. Worst of all for the Boston based school; they didn’t even get out of the semifinals of the Beanpot, losing to Boston College 3-1.

The offense looks primed for a bounce back season, however, returning their top three point scorers from a year ago, including Robbie Baillargeon, the team’s breakout freshman superstar last season who lead the Terriers in points and finished tied for 19th in the conference in that category. In addition to Baillargeon and the other top point getters, seniors D Ahti Ohksanan and F Danny O’Reagan, BU returns five forwards who were freshmen last season. The young forwards now have college hockey experience and year of playing together. Despite their lackluster performance last year, the Terriers look ready to put the puck in the back of the net at a much higher clip than their paltry 2.15 g/gm last season.

Along the blue line, the Terriers best two way player Ohksanan returns for his senior season, looking to lead a defense that put up little resistance last season. Loosing D Garret Noonan and Patrick MaCgregor won’t help the cause seeing as both played in every game last season and lead the team in blocks with 71 and 61. The three rising sophomores, Doyle Somerby, Dalton MacAffe, and T.J Ryan, will need to step up this season will need to step up after subpar freshman campaigns where each logged over 24 games but none made a major impact.

Two juniors will duke it out over who gets most of the goaltending duties with Matt O’Connor playing in more games last year but Sean Maguire playing better. Neither were spectacular but the slight edge goes to Maguire whose save percentage was 22 percentage points better at .938 than O’Connor’s.

Bottom Line- Don’t expect BU to be as bad as they were last year. They is too much history in the program to keep them down for long. The offense will be much this season will the development of young players including Baillargeon and the return of veterans Ohksanan and O’Reagan. If the defense and goalie tandem of O’Connor and Maguire can keep anything out of the net, look for BU to get back to the middle of the conference this season with eyes on the top tier in the next few years.