BOSTON (AP) — Adam Gaudette had a hat trick and Cayden Primeau stopped 38 shots on Monday night to lead Northeastern to a 5-2 victory over Boston University in the 66th Beanpot championship game and give the Huskies the city’s college hockey bragging rights for the first time in 30 years.
Nolan Stevens and Trevor Owens also scored for Northeastern, which had lost nine times in the tournament finals since last claiming the trophy in 1988. BU had won 16 times since then — and 30 times in all — beating the Huskies in the final six straight times before this year.
Held annually on the first two Mondays of February, the tournament pits the area’s four college hockey powers against each other. Harvard, the defending champion, beat Boston College 5-4 in overtime in the consolation game.
It was Northeastern’s fifth Beanpot title — by far the fewest of the four schools.
No. 12 Northeastern entered the game as the highest-ranked school of the four, and had beaten BU twice in the regular season, 4-1 and 6-1. The Huskies fans seemed to sense that their slump was nearing an end.
Outshouting and outsinging their red-clad BU counterparts, the Northeastern cheering section taunted the Terriers fans with call-and-response chants like “Real Dog, Fake Dog!” and the devastatingly biting “Experiential Learning!” (Northeastern takes pride in its co-op program that places students in the workplace.)
But the real celebration came after the buzzer, when the Huskies’ players poured over the boards and threw their equipment into the air. In the stands, the band played the school’s fight song and, for some reason, “Stacy’s Mom,” while fans danced and sang along.
Gaudette, who is the leading scorer in the nation, was named the tournament’s most outstanding player. Primeau, a freshman, was given the Eberly Award as the event’s top goaltender.
Jake Oettinger made 22 saves for the Terriers, and Logan Cockerill was credited with BU’s only goal, which was actually tipped into the Northeastern net by Primeau 12:35 into the first period.
Then the Huskies took over.
Stevens tied it on a power play when he stickhandled around one defender and back into the middle before beating Oettinger. Gaudette made it 2-1 with 2:28 left in the first, and Owens made it 3-1 on a wrist shot from the left circle with 5:28 left in second.
Gaudette made it 4-1 on another power play, converting a cross-ice pass from Dylan Sikura with 3.5 seconds left in the second. BU pulled the goalie with more than four minutes left and managed to cut the deficit to 4-2 with 2:40 left.
But Gaudette added an empty-netter with 31 seconds left, racing down the ice, swiping the puck from BU defenseman Chad Krys and knocking it in from a tight angle to clinch it.
It’s the first time in Beanpot history that all four schools have won the title in a four-year span. It’s also the first time since BU claimed its first Beanpot title in 1958 that the Terriers have the longest championship drought.
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