Men’s Hockey: BU Headed to Manchester for NCAA Regionals

By Michael Wax

Cover Photo Credit: Jessica Lam

After two overtime wins to capture their 10th Hockey East Championship in program history, Boston University Men’s Hockey (27-10-0) will head to Manchester, New Hampshire for NCAA Regionals.

“We’re excited,” BU Head Coach Jay Pandolfo said after the announcement. “I think being in Manchester helps us. It’s only about a 50-minute/hour ride, so that certainly helps us when we go in there. Practice on Wednesday and be ready to go. So we’re looking forward to it.”

BU will take on Western Michigan (23-14-1) in the early game on Thursday, with the two teams set to face off at 2 p.m. On the other side of the region, No. 4 Denver (30-9-0) will take on Cornell (20-10-2) at 5:30 on Thursday.

“I know they have a lot of skill up front,” senior captain Domenick Fensore said. “We’ll definitely watch them over the week, on what their tendencies are, and just kind of see how they play.”

BU picked up five consecutive wins before moving to TD Garden for the Hockey East final four, going into TD Garden following a massive 7-3 win over Vermont in the HE Quarterfinal at Agganis Arena.

“We have a lot of confidence in our group and it starts with our goaltender, Drew Commesso,” Fensore said. “Obviously, we know what we have to do. Just win and move on, and just go from there.”

BU punched their ticket to the NCAA regionals with back-to-back OT wins at TD Garden on Friday and Saturday. The HE Semifinal saw a 2-1 win against Providence, while the final saw a 3-2 win against Merrimack. The freshmen Hutson brothers were the weekend stars, with forward Quinn scoring the semifinal winner, and defenseman Lane getting the championship-sealing goal. 

“It’s tough to win,” Lane Hutson said, regarding the Hockey East tournament. “Really good teams, really competitive.” 

BU will be without senior defenseman Case McCarthy and junior forward Nick Zabaneh for the remainder of the season, as both suffered season-ending injuries in the Hockey East tournament. 

“He’s a huge loss for us,” Pandolfo said of McCarthy. “He’s been a steady presence back there all year long. He’s a leader. He’s been here for years. He knows what it takes to win, but we have depth on our team. So it’s up to the next guy to be ready to get in there and help us out.”

They will get senior forward Wilmer Skoog back from suspension after he was unavailable to play in the Hockey East Championship.

BU will start its journey to the Frozen Four in Tampa with their matchup against Western Michigan at 2 p.m. on Thursday.