Saturday, October 6, 2012

V-Reds Face Defending NCAA Champs Tonight

The University of New Brunswick Varsity Reds are in Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts tonight for a game against the defending NCAA champion Boston College Eagles. Game time is scheduled for 8pm AST at the Conte Forum.

The Varsity Reds are coming off of a tough 2-1 shootout loss against the Portland Pirates on Thursday afternoon, which dropped their preseason record to 4-1-1. Rookie Cam Braes continued his impressive play as he had the lone goal for UNB. The Varsity Reds are expected to line-up like this for tonight's game:




The Eagles, coached by the legendary Jerry York, will be taking the ice for their first exhibition game and enter the season as the #1 ranked team in the nation, as well as the favourites to capture the Hockey East championship. They are coming off of a season to remember as they compiled a 33-10-1 record, won the Ice Breaker tournament, won the Hockey East regular season title, captured the Beanpot championship, won the Hockey East Championship, and won their 5th National Championship with a 4-1 victory over Ferris State in April. They ended the season on a 19 game winning streak, having not dropped a game since January. However, they will be looking to replace a number of highly touted players as leading scorer Chris Kreider (19th overall, 2009), Brian Dumoulin (51st, 2009), captain Tommy Cross (35th, 2007), alternate captain Paul Carey (135th, 2007), and alternate captain Barry Almeida have all moved on. Their top returning players include Kevin Hayes (24th, 2010), Johnny Gaudreau (104th, 2011), Bill Arnold (108th, 2010), alternate captain Patrick Wey (115th, 2009), senior goalie Parker Milner, alternate captain Steven Whitney, and captain Pat Mullane. They have also added top recruits Michael Matheson (23rd, 2012) and Colin Sullivan (198th, 2010) this off-season.

The Eagles have arguably been the top program in the country during the last decade, winning NCAA titles in 2001, 2008, 2010, and last season. Coincidentally, UNB and BC have alternated championship seasons over the last 6 years, with the V-Reds winning the University Cup in 2007, 2009, and 2011.

This will mark the 5th meeting between the two programs with Boston College leading the all-time series 3-1. Here is the game-by-game breakdown:

December 28th, 1972 (Chestnut Hill): 14-2 loss
October 9th, 2004 (Chesnut Hill): 7-2 loss
December 21st, 2008 (AUC): 5-3 win
December 23rd, 2008 (AUC): 4-2 loss

The V-Reds have arguably been the most successful CIS team in recent years against NCAA competition, posting a 13-10-1 over the last 5 seasons. In addition to the aforementioned victory over the Eagles UNB has also defeated New Hampshire, Maine (twice), Union College, UMass (twice), Vermont (twice), Providence College (twice), RPI, and Holy Cross during that span.

It appears the game may be available via web-cast here.