Boston College blasts Penn State, 8-2, in Three Rivers Classic championship game

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Seventh-ranked Boston College scored two goals 33 seconds apart late in the first period to erase an early deficit, halt Penn State's upset bid and capture the 2013 Three Rivers Classic crown Saturday night at Consol Energy Center.

The meeting between college hockey's youngest program and one of its most-storied ones ended predictably. The Eagles, with five national championships, prevailed, 8-2, and hoisted the Confluence Cup.

"They're just a scary offensive team," Penn State coach Guy Gadowsky said.

Boston College, fresh from a 5-0 splattering of Bowling Green Friday in the first round, fell behind early when Nittany Lions sophomore forward Casey Bailey scored less than five minutes into the game.

Penn State forward Jonathan Milley picked off an errant drop pass along the boards and floated a centering pass to Bailey, who dropped to a knee and fired the puck past Boston College goalie Brian Billett.

An upset, though, was not in the cards.

Eagles forwards Ryan Fitzgerald -- son of Penguins assistant general manager Tom Fitzgerald -- and Kevin Hayes scored at 18:12 and 18:45 of the first period, respectively, to steal the lead.

"I don't think we took our foot off the gas," Gadowsky said, "but I think we got a little tentative when they got on a roll."

Boston College (12-4-2) rattled off three more unanswered goals in a six-minute span midway in the second.

Nittany Lions goalie Matthew Skoff, a McKees Rocks product, was replaced by backup P.J. Musico to open the third period, but the Eagles didn't relent.

Boston College defenseman Danny Linell added to the lead with a slap shot from the blue line four minutes into the final period, and the Eagles scored two more goals 18 seconds apart.

Penn State forward David Goodwin closed the scoring and the eight-goal unanswered streak by scoring off an odd-man rush with 2:33 left in the game.

The Nittany Lions dropped to 4-10-1.

 


Stephen J. Nesbitt: snesbitt@post-gazette.com, 412-290-2183 and Twitter @stephenjnesbitt. First Published December 28, 2013 9:56 PM

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