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Men's Hockey Preview: Merrimack

Oct. 28, 2010

Game #5
No. 2 Boston College Men's Hockey (3-1-0, 1-0-0 HEA) vs. Merrimack (1-0-2, 0-0-1)

Hockey East Association Contest
Friday, Oct. 29, 2010 - 7 p.m. EST
Conte Forum/Kelley Rink (7,884) - Chestnut Hill, Mass.

Game #6
No. 2 Boston College at Merrimack

Hockey East Association Contest
Saturday, Oct. 30, 2010 - 7 p.m. EST
J. Thom Lawler Arena (3,000) - North Andover, Mass.

EAGLES FACE MERRIMACK IN 2010-11 HOME OPENER: No. 2 Boston College will open the home portion of its 2010-11 schedule on Friday, Oct. 29 against Hockey East opponent Merrimack. The Eagles played their first four contests on the road, capturing one road win at Northeastern (Oct. 9) and two at No. 6 Denver (Oct. 15-16). The team suffered its first defeat of the season at No. 17 Notre Dame on Saturday, Oct. 23.

NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP BANNER NIGHT: Friday's home contest against Merrimack will mark the team's home-opening game. BC will raise its 2010 national-championship banner prior to faceoff as a final salute to last year's title team. The celebration is scheduled to begin at 6:30 p.m.

INTERNET AUDIO: Audio broadcasts of all Boston College hockey games - home and away - will be available free of charge through with Jon Rish (play-by-play) and Ken Hodge (color) calling the action. ISP manages and produces all Boston College hockey radio broadcasts.

INTERNET VIDEO: Friday's home game and all future Boston College home hockey games - excluding select TV games - will be video streamed and available on a pay-per-view basis through

THE POLLS: Boston College dropped one spot - to No. 2 - in both national polls after suffering its first defeat of the season at No. 17 Notre Dame last weekend. Miami captured the top spot in both polls - USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine and The Eagles had received the nation's top preseason billing and were the nation's top-ranked team through the opening two weeks of the 2010-11 season.


• Boston College's 2-1 loss at No. 17 Notre Dame marked the team's first defeat of the season, snapping a 15-game unbeaten streak (14-0-1) dating to a 3-2 loss at Northeastern on Feb. 19, 2010.

• Notre Dame's decisive goal scored with a two-man advantage at 17:11 of the second period snapped a streak of 26 straight penalties killed this season. It also lifted an opponent to its first lead over BC this season (a span of 217:11).

• Boston College has been penalized 38 times in four games, an average of 9.5 penalties per game; the Eagles are 31-for-32 in penalty-killing situations, a mark good for a 96.9 percent kill rate which ranks second in the country.

• Sophomore goaltender Parker Milner registered 20 saves in the team's 3-0 win over No. 6 Denver on Saturday, Oct. 16 to mark the team's second shutout of the season. It also marked Milner's first collegiate shutout in his first appearance of the 2010-11 season. The Pittsburgh, Pa., product improved to 11-2-1 in 14 career starts.

• Senior goaltender John Muse registered 35 saves in the team's 2-0 season-opening victory at Northeastern on Saturday, Oct. 9. The shutout performance marked the ninth of his career. Muse ended the 2009-10 season with a 20-save shutout performance against Wisconsin in Detroit, Mich., on April 10. The 35 saves marked his most saves since a 4-3 loss at Denver on Jan. 2, 2010, a span of 17 games.

• Boston College has outscored its opponents 12-4 through four games this season and is averaging a 33-30 advantage in shots.

• Through four games, senior Brian Gibbons has scored a team-high three goals while seven different skaters have scored one goal each and three players - junior Cam Atkinson, defenseman Tommy Cross and junior Jimmy Hayes - have each scored twice.

• Junior defenseman Tommy Cross, who scored in consecutive wins at No. 6 Denver, tallied goals in consecutive games for the first time in his career.

• Freshman Kevin Hayes, a 6-foot-3, 205-pound forward, registered his first collegiate points in the second period of the team's 6-2 win at No. 6 Denver on Friday, Oct. 15. The Dorchester, Mass., resident assisted on Tommy Cross' goal at 9:17, then scored his first career goal at 12:41.

• Senior forward Brian Gibbons scored shorthanded goal in a 6-2 win at No. 6 Denver on Friday, Oct. 15. It marked BC's first since defenseman Carl Sneep against Yale in the NCAA Northeast Regional final on March 28, 2010.

• Junior Tommy Cross is the first junior to serve as assistant captain since Mike Brennan in 2006-07.

• For the 10th time in the last 13 seasons, Boston College has been picked as the Hockey East preseason favorite, or co-favorite, by the league's coaches.

• Cam and Tommy Atkinson, Joe and Steven Whitney, and Jimmy and Kevin Hayes are the 13th, 14th and 15th pairs of brothers to play hockey on the same team at Boston College.

• Sophomore forward Chris Kreider, who captured a gold medal with the U.S. National Junior Team at the 2010 IIHF World Junior Championship in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, made his first appearance with the U.S. Men's National Team in May, traveling to the 2010 IIHF World Championship in Cologne, Gelsenkirchen and Mannheim, Germany.

• Six players - five sophomores and one freshman - participated in the 2010 USA Hockey National Junior Evaluation Camp from July 30 - Aug. 7 in Lake Placid, N.Y. - defenseman Brian Dumoulin, forward Chris Kreider, defenseman Philip Samuelsson, defenseman Patrick Wey, forward Steven Whitney and freshman forward Kevin Hayes. Kreider was one of nine returnees from the gold medal-winning 2010 U.S. National Junior Team to participate in the camp.

• Boston College has 11 players on its roster who have been selected in the NHL Draft. Those players are: Bill Arnold (Calgary/4th/2010), Cam Atkinson (Columbus/6th/2008), Paul Carey (Colorado/5th/2007), Tommy Cross (Boston/2nd/2007), Brian Dumoulin (Carolina/2nd/2009), Jimmy Hayes (Toronto*/2nd/2008), Kevin Hayes (Chicago/1st/2010), Chris Kreider (NY Rangers/1st/2009), Isaac MacLeod (San Jose/5th/2010), Philip Samuelsson (Pittsburgh/2nd/2009) and Patrick Wey (Washington/4th/2009). * Jimmy Hayes was traded to Chicago in July 2010.

• Last winter, Boston College scored 171 goals - its highest total since the 2000-01 season and the third-most under York - and ranked second in the nation with a 4.07 goals per game average. Led by junior Cam Atkinson (30 goals) and Brian Gibbons (50 points) and Joe Whitney (45 points), Boston College returns 79 percent (360 of 456 points) of its total offensive production from one season ago.

THE MERRIMACK SERIES: The meetings will be the 73rd and 74th all-time between the two schools. Boston College went 2-1-0 against Merrimack last winter and is 52-18-3 (.730 win percentage) in the all-time series. BC is 39-12-4 (.741 win percentage) against Merrimack under head coach Jerry York and last lost to the Warriors inside Conte Forum on Oct. 20, 1997. Since its October 1997 loss to Merrimack, BC is 21-0-2 at Kelley Rink. The senior class is 6-1-2 against the Warriors, including a 4-0-1 record inside Conte Forum.

THE LAST MEETING (Feb. 23, 2010 at Kelley Rink): Cam Atkinson registered his first career hat trick to lead BC to a 7-0 victory. Atkinson's line - joined by Joe Whitney and Brian Gibbons - totaled eight points. Gibbons registered one goal and one assist, while Whitney had three assists. BC tallied three special-teams goals - one in each period. The Eagles totaled seven goals for the second consecutive game. It also was the second straight game in which a BC player recorded a hat trick. Gibbons scored three goals against Northeastern just two days earlier. Philip Samuelsson recorded his first multiple-point performance (two assists).

LAST TIME OUT: Senior Calle Ridderwall scored twice in the second period to lift No. 17 Notre Dame to a 2-1 home victory over top-ranked Boston College before a sellout crowd of 2,857 fans at the Joyce Center in South Bend, Ind. The Fighting Irish captured the coveted Lefty Smith - John "Snooks" Kelley Memorial Trophy, awarded annually to the victor of the game between the Eagles and Fighting Irish and was presented by Lefty Smith himself. Senior Brian Gibbons lifted Boston College to a 1-0 lead on a power-play goal with 47.0 seconds left in the first period and goaltender John Muse recorded 32 saves in 58:53 for the visiting Eagles, who suffered their first defeat of the four-game season and fall to 3-1-0.

YORK HONORED WITH LESTER PATRICK AWARD: Coach Jerry York was honored as one of four recipients of the 2010 Lester Patrick Trophy at an awards presentation held at TD Garden on Wednesday, Oct. 27 at TD Garden. Joining York as 2010 recipients were Hockey Hall of Famer Cam Neely, Boston University coach Jack Parker and American Hockey League President David Andrews. The trophy is an annual award presented for outstanding service to hockey in the United States. York is the fifth Boston College Eagle to earn the award, joining John A. "Snooks" Kelley, honored in 1972, Len Ceglarski (1990), Joe Mullen (1995) and Brian Leetch (2007). Leetch was on hand to present York with the trophy.


John Muse, Sr., G
• Hockey East Defensive Player of the Week (Oct. 11)

Jimmy Hayes, Jr., F
• Hockey East Player of the Week (Oct. 18)

Jerry York, Head Coach
• 2010 Lester Patrick Trophy Recipient

THE Jerry York FILE
Record: 853-540-92 (.605 win percentage)
Years: 39
Record at BC: 386-205-58 (.639 win percentage)
Years at BC: 17

RETIRED JERSEY: On April 12, 2010, Boston College recognized former player and current coach Jerry York by retiring his jersey at the 2010 national championship celebration on O'Neill Plaza.

MORE MILESTONES FOR YORK: Jerry York is in his 39th season as a head coach and his 17th season behind the Boston College bench. He is the second winningest coach in NCAA history and the first among active Division I coaches.

EIGHTY-EIGHTH SEASON OF HOCKEY: Boston College is in its 88th season of hockey. The Eagles have compiled 70 winning seasons and a 1338-735-110 all-time record.

THE CAPTAINS: Boston College elected senior forward Joe Whitney as captain of the 2010-11 Eagle entry. Senior forward Brian Gibbons and junior defenseman Tommy Cross were elected as assistant captains.

EAGLES CHOSEN AS 2010-11 LEAGUE FAVORITE: Boston College has been chosen as the unanimous preseason favorite to win the Hockey East Association regular-season title, according to the Hockey East Coaches' Poll. BC earned nine first-place votes and a total of 90 points. Maine was picked second with 80 points, just four points ahead of New Hampshire. Boston University and Northeastern rounded out the top five selections. The announcement marks the 10th time in the last 13 seasons that the Eagles have been selected as the preseason favorite, or co-favorite, to win the conference crown. BC enters the 2010-11 campaign having captured last year's national title - its fourth national championship in program history. Last winter also marked program's third national championship under head coach Jerry York. York and the Eagles return 17 lettermen from last year's 29-win club.

EAGLES RETURN 17 OF 21 LETTERWINNERS: With the loss of four lettermen - defenseman Carl Sneep and forwards Matt Price, Matt Lombardi and Ben Smith - Boston College returns the bulk of its squad in 2010-11. The 24-man roster features 17 returning letterwinners - two goaltenders, six defensemen and nine forwards. The group helped Boston College to a 29-10-3 overall record, including a 16-8-3 mark in Hockey East play, during a season in which the Eagles earned the Beanpot title, the Hockey East Tournament title and the NCAA Championship.

100-POINT SCORERS: Senior forwards Brian Gibbons and Joe Whitney each recorded their 100th career point last season. Gibbons ranks 53rd at Boston College with 117 career points, while Whitney ranks 54th with 116 career points. Boston College has 72 players who have scored 100 points or more in a career.

SUSTAINED SUCCESS: Boston College has won 25 or more games 10 times in the last 13 seasons. In 2000-01. The Eagles set the school record with 33 victories - in 43 games - en route the school's second national championship.

HOCKEY EAST HISTORY: The Eagles have won four of the last six Hockey East Tournament titles. Overall, BC has posted a 51-23-2 record (.684) in the Hockey East Tournament. Boston College has won nine conference championships, the highest total in Hockey East. BC's league tournament titles came in 1987, 1990, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2005, 2007, 2008 and 2010. Under head coach Jerry York, Boston College is 42-11-1 (.787) in the Hockey East Tournament. The Eagles have won seven titles - 1998, 1999, 2001, 2005, 207, 2008, and 2010 - in 10 championship games under York.

TWITTER UPDATES: Live in-game news updates, in short form, on Boston College hockey are available through Twitter at:

REAL-TIME STATS: Live in-game updates will be provide by Gametracker and available through Boston College's official athletics web site

WHAT'S NEXT: Following a two-game home-and-home weekend series against Merrimack, Boston College will host UMass-Lowell on Tuesday, Nov. 2 at 7 p.m. and will host New Hampshire on Friday, Nov. 5 at 7 p.m.

A GLANCE BACK AT 2009-10: Boston College finished with a 29-10-3 overall record, including a 16-8-3 mark in Hockey East play. The Eagles earned the Beanpot title, the Hockey East Tournament title and the NCAA Division I championship. As the top seed in the Northeast Regional, BC defeated Alaska in the first round and Yale in the quarterfinals to advance to the Frozen Four in Detroit, Mich., the program's fourth Frozen Four in five years. There, the team defeated Miami 7-1 in the semifinals and earned the school's fourth NCAA title with a 5-0 victory over Wisconsin in the championship game. Junior Brian Gibbons captured All-Conference first-team honors, sophomore Cam Atkinson earned All-Conference second-team accolades and Chris Kreider and Brian Dumoulin earned All-Conference Rookie Team recognition. Atkinson led the nation with 30 goals.

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