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Friday, February 29, 2008

Men's Hockey 3, Boston College 2

Kremyr, Friars thaw
Rookie's two goals set pace for key victory

Report based on CSTV's Gametracker service

Chestnut Hill, Mass.- Given the way the Friars' pleasantly head-turning season had been decaying through the bulk of February, they would most certainly accept a 360-degree role reversal -even if part of that bargain meant a sweatier night for goaltender Tyler Sims and a limited allotment of shots of their own.

The discrepancy in that category was not far off from what their bottomless cannons of rubber had been kindling on a gamely basis. And it was not far off from what they got the last time they visited Boston College at the beginning of the month. On Friday, the Eagles ran up a final count of 37-24 in the shooting gallery, though the prime factor was a first period which saw a 14-5 differential.

Come what may, Sims held BC's radiant graphite silent long enough for the likes of freshman Jordan Kremyr to sculpt a an early 2-0 lead. From there, the Friars stood strong enough to morph that into a 3-2 triumph, their second win in the never-welcoming Conte Forum over a span of 29 days.

With the win -which cut off a Hockey East season-worst four-game winless skid- and Northeastern's 5-4 OT falter to the aforementioned Riverhawks, Providence squeezed into fourth place alongside the Eagles. Barring a tie in the rematch on campus Saturday, that knot will be broken one way or the other.

Besides trying to at least keep a skate mark ahead of the Friars through this series, Boston was similarly itching to compress a flustering meltdown (1-3-0 since clutching the Beanpot trophy February 11). Their immediate translation Friday was a five-shot sugar rush, those first four coming in a single between-whistles onsalught, within the first five minutes of action.

The Eagles' bounciness, for the moment, was quick to die at 5:04 when heavy loader Brian Gibbons was whistled for holding, though PC's Nick Mazzolini snapped that power play with an interference citation 47 seconds later.

By the time everyone was at full strength, the Friars went on their first convincing offensive and nipped dynamic freshman stopper John Muse at 8:41. Kremyr, who with but one goal and two points in 26 games had recently been rotating with sophomore Chris Eppich on the fourth line, this time shared the wealth along with classmate Matt Germain.

Germain and Eppich set up Kremyr for the team's second stab of the game and he scooped his own rebound to deposit the 1-0 edge.

Over the next 10:05 of action, the Eagles authorized one attempt at Muse as opposed to the seven they sprinkled on Sims. But with 1:14 till intermission, Kremyr staged another presto-red-lighto, this time nailing home a shipment from point partners Cody Wild and Matt Taormina.

A few more settled stays on Muse's property helped amount to an even 12-12 shot clock throughout the middle frame. But both of the pad boys kept PC's 2-0 lead unaltered -even with four BC power plays- until 16:20.

Only two seconds after John Mori -who at 5:57 had been tripped by Nick Petrecki and whiffed on a resultant penalty shot- was released from a sentence for the same offense, striker Andrew Orpik sawed the difference to 2-1.

But in another 69 seconds, the Friars rushed Eagle Dan Bertram's wide attempt the other way and John Cavanagh fed another blooming rookie -Ian O'Connor- for the eventual decider.

Up through the 6:15 mark of the third period, BC had spilled a luscious five power plays on a cumulative 10 shots. They also had not heard from their heated trinity of Nathan Gerbe, Joe Whitney, and Ben Smith. All that changed on their sixth man-advantage at 15:18 as Smith converted a setup from his linemates for a 3-2 Providence lead.

But with the aid of an interference call against BC blueliner Mike Brennan at 16:50, PC weaned the Eagles to three farther between shots. Two of them were within the final 38 ticks with a six-pack attack working for Boston, but Sims swallowed both to summon a whistle.

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