Boston University earned two points against New Hampshire over the weekend, leaving the Terriers on the verge of clinching the regular-season title in Hockey East. That leads the three things I learned this weekend in Hockey East:
1) Terriers ready to clinch
Boston University is very close to clinching at least a share of the regular season title. With a six-point lead in the standings over Boston College and a game in hand on the Eagles, BU needs just one win (or a BC loss) over the final two weekends of the regular season to clinch the season-long title. The Terriers nearly earned those points on Saturday night, rallying from 4-0 down at New Hampshire to get within a goal. The Wildcats, though, hung on to force the title race to, at the very minimum the penultimate weekend of Hockey East play.
2) Hockey East teams scored goals like Mother Nature produced snow
Snow has been an almost everyday occurrence in Hockey East country of late. But over the past week, goals have fallen as quickly as the white stuff we now all detest. Many offenses exploded this weekend, though none more than Northeastern which posted 9-0 and 6-1 wins over Connecticut on the weekend. UMass Lowell broke out of its offensive drought with a seven spot against Massachusetts. Boston College and Vermont played a wild one on Saturday with a 6-5 final. And Maine poured in nine goals against the stingy Merrimack defense to earn a two-game sweep, the first such sweep on the road for the Black Bears since a two-game sweep at Boston College in the 2013-13 season.
3) Even if BU clinches, there are plenty of races left in Hockey East
Boston University might end the race or the league title as early as Friday. But everything else in the league seems up for grabs with two weekends remaining. Splits between Providence and Notre Dame as well as Boston College and Vermont has placed just eight points between second and ninth place in Hockey East. Second-place BC and third-place Lowell seem to be in the driver’s seat for a top four spot with 24 and 22 points, respectively. But the two play one another next weekend, the only game both teams play next weekend. That leaves every other team with a game in hand, so fourth-place Providence (21 points), fifth-place Northeastern and Notre Dame (each with 20 points) and even seventh-place Vermont are very much alive for a top-four spot and a first-round bye. There is no doubt this race will come down to the final buzzer on the final night of league play.