BOSTON -- In front of a raucous crowd at Northeastern's Matthews Arena, the Huskies gave their faithful something big to cheer about as their team ended Boston College's 19-game winning streak with a 3-1 victory - their second in as many games to open the Hockey East season undefeated.
The victory was head coach Jim Madigan's first against the crosstown rival Eagles in his young career, which is in the midst of its second year, and also sidelined NU's five-game losing streak in the all-time series between the teams. The Huskies had not beaten BC since a 2-1 win at Matthews Arena on Feb. 19, 2011, which also happens to be the last time NU was victorious against a No. 1-ranked opponent.
All three NU goals were scored by rookies, including a second-straight winner by Kevin Roy, who redirected a pass from junior Cody Ferriero into the back of the net at the 8:06 mark of the first period. Ferriero won the puck free and brought it around the corner, firing a beautiful pass from the right side of BC senior netminder Parker Milner for the no-doubt tip-in.
NU opened the scoring just 5:03 into the proceedings as Ryan Belonger tipped home a stolen pass from classmate and South Boston native Cam Darcy, giving a 1-0 lead.
After Roy's goal, the Eagles were able to set up a quick chance on the power play and beat Huskies senior Chris Rawlings just nine seconds into the advantage. At the 14:55 mark, the puck slid its way towards senior assistant captain Steven Whitney for his first goal of the season - beating Rawlings through the middle.
Senior captain Pat Mullane, who assisted on the goal for the Eagles, is on milestone watch as the season opens. The Wallingford, Conn. native has team-best 97 career points in his 125 games in Maroon and Gold.
Although the Huskies ultimately did not need any insurance, Colton Saucerman provided some in a very lucky way at 3:42 of the third as he bounced a shot from the blue line that deflected off BC freshman defensive counterpart Teddy Doherty and changed directions before bouncing under the legs of Milner.
This contest also marked just the second time in the last nine games that a contest between the Huskies and Eagles ended with a margin of two goals, dating back to a 7-6 loss in overtime in the Beanpot championship game at TD Garden on Feb. 14, 2011.
Northeastern, which had not started a season with two wins in a row since 1999, has now won each of its last three games against ranked foes, including last season's season-closing loss to Boston University in overtime. The Huskies own the most home victories over Boston College since 2008-09 as they have downed the Eagles on five occasions and also hosted five capacity crowds in BC's last five visits to Huntington Avenue.
The two teams will not have to wait long to renew their rivalry, matching up next Saturday night at Kelley Rink in Chestnut Hill.
Boston University 4, Providence 2
With sophomore Cason Hohmann's game-winning goal and two assists leading the way, the Terriers opened the regular season by doubling up the visiting Providence Friars at Agganis Arena. The Arlington, Texas native posted his second winner of his career with 1:03 remaining in the middle period, collecting loose change and depositing it into the back of the net past Friar freshman Jon Gillies (30 saves). Senior New Yorker Ben Rosen equaled his goal total from all 35 games last season with an empty-netter in the final minute to ensure the Terriers a victory for Matt O'Connor, who made 26 saves on 28 shots in his collegiate debut. PC sophomore Ross Mauermann and freshman Paul de Jersey each posted their second goals of the season in respective order during the contest but it was not enough for another victory on the heels of Friday's blowout win over Sacred Heart. Providence will remain on the road next weekend for a pair of games at Miami, while BU sees blue in their sights with a date at New Hampshire in a week.
New Hampshire 4, St. Cloud State 2
After a 5-3 win on Friday, the Wildcats completed the sweep with another two-goal buffer at the Whittemore Center to sweep the series from the visiting Huskies - returning the favor from suffering a loss and a tie on the road last year - as senior John Henrion and junior Nick Sorkin each potted a goal and an assist. Junior Dalton Speelman also continued his stellar start to the season as he assisted on Sorkin's goal at 7:13 of the second. Senior Austin Block concluded the middle stanza with his second goal of the season in as many games, which also turned out as the eventual game-winner. Sophomore Casey DeSmith and SCSU counterpart Ryan Faragher both made 25 saves in net but end the weekend with opposite records.
Maine 4, Army 3
Senior Joey Diamond tipped in a shot from freshman Ben Hutton at 9:56 of the third period to lift the Black Bears in the consolation game of the 16th annual IceBreaker Tournament at the Sprint Center in Kansas City, Mo. Maine peppered West Point sophomore goaltender Rob Tadazak with 54 shots and it was just enough to get past the pesky Black Knights, allowing Maine freshman netminder Matt Morris to earn the first win of his collegiate career with a 21-save effort. Diamond and sophomore Stu Higgins, who replaced concussed senior Kyle Beattie, each posted a goal and an assist to pace the offensive effort in Maine's inaugural victory of the season. Junior Mark Anthoine, a Lewiston, Maine native, and senior Klas Leidermark also posted goals past Tadazak in the contest. The Black Bears return to the Alfond Arena next weekend for a two-game series against the Skating Saints of St. Lawrence, which begins Friday at 7 p.m. for a game televised locally on WABI.
Follow @JoshuaKummins on Twitter for Hockey East news and updates all season long.