By James Duffy, deputy sports editor
An emotional Dave Flint took his seat in the Beanpot media room following his team’s 7-0 drubbing at the hands of Boston College Tuesday night.
“It was obviously a disappointing effort,” were the first words he could muster.
With less color in his face than usual, the Huskies coach went on to describe exactly what happened on the ice over the last two hours.
The Northeastern (NU) women’s hockey team came into the Beanpot final riding a 14-game winning streak, taking on conference rival Boston College (BC), the undefeated, undisputed No. 1 team in the country.
NU had managed to extend its winning streak on Saturday afternoon with a 3-1 win over Providence College.
As they had over their past few games, the Huskies came out of the gate flat, playing a step behind the Eagles in the first period.
“The first period we came out tentative,” Flint said.
In that period, NU found themselves down two goals, victimized by the best offense in the nation.
BC senior forward Haley Skarupa netted an early powerplay goal, and the Eagles managed to kill off a Husky man advantage.
Later in the opening frame, BC freshman forward Makenna Newkirk snuck a second goal through freshman goalie Brittany Bugalski’s five-hole. Bugalski initially stopped Newkirk’s wrister, but the puck squeaked out of her pads and over the goal line.
The Eagles scored again in a similar fashion, but the play was called dead before the puck went into the net, thus ending the first period at 2-0.
The Huskies offense was firing but stonewalled by the solid goaltending of sophomore Katie Burt. Of the seven shots they put on net in the first period, three or four were high quality scoring chances, but Burt was consistently up to the task.
The second period was better for NU as they kept the Eagles off the scoresheet. But again, the Huskies were unable to find the back of the net.
Burt was lights out for BC, stopping 22 shots on the game and seven in a crucial second period. The Huskies had two power plays in the period but couldn’t convert.
She continually flashed leather, making stellar glove saves to rob the Huskies and keep them scoreless.
In the third period, the Eagles slammed the door and secured the Beanpot championship.
Senior forward Dana Trivigno potted a goal early in the frame and less than a minute later sophomore forward Kenzie Kent lit the lamp again. It was over for the Huskies.
“For the first time all year, we gave up after those two early goals,” Flint said.
BC piled it on after that, racking up three more goals in the period with a Trivigno hat trick, propelling them to a 7-0 victory and the sixth Beanpot title in school history.
Flint said that the scoreboard didn’t reflect his team’s talent level.
“I feel that they’re not seven goals better than us,” he said.
The Huskies tried to turn the tide in the final frame, but couldn’t get enough offensive firepower and ended up being shutout for just the second time this season.
When the clock ran out, the Eagles bench stormed the ice, tossing gloves and helmets into the air while the Huskies could do nothing but stand and watch.
In the awards ceremony, Trivigno was named the tournament’s MVP after her three-goal performance, and Katie Burt was crowned the Beanpot’s best goalie.
The Huskies will have a chance for revenge on Friday afternoon as they travel to Chestnut Hill in a rematch of the final.
Despite the blowout loss on Tuesday, Flint doesn’t see a need to change up the roster too much for Friday’s showdown.
“I don’t want to blow things up,” he said. “We won 14 straight. Sooner or later it had to come to an end, and it came to an abrupt one tonight.”
Photo courtesy Jim Pierce, Northeastern Athletics.