March 18, 2012

Freshman Gaudreau named Hockey East Tournament MVP

By Jesse Connolly

BOSTON – For just the fifth time in its history, the Hockey East Tournament MVP Award was handed out to a freshman. Forward Johnny Gaudreau captured the honor after his three-point night led the BC Eagles to a 4-1 win in the championship game over Maine.

Four of the five freshmen to earn the honor have come from Boston College, with Chuck Kobasew (2001) being the most recent before Gaudreau joined the elite company on Saturday night. BU’s Kieran Millan was the only other first-year player to pull off the feat, doing so in 2009 for the Terriers.

As would be expected, Gaudreau also made the 2012 Hockey East All-Tournament Team. Here’s how it shook out:

Johnny Gaudreau (BC, forward)

The 5-foot-6 winger registered a point in each of BC’s four tournament contests.

All in all, Gaudreau racked up three goals and four assists for a total of seven points and a plus-4 rating.

 

Joey Diamond (Maine, forward)

Diamond was instrumental in the Black Bears reaching the championship game, scoring twice against BU in the semifinals.

In five tournament contests, he scored three goals and added three assists, upping his season totals to 25-22-47 in 36 games.

 

Alex Chiasson (BU, forward)

Chiasson was the only player who didn’t partake in the finals to be named to the all-tourney squad.

The junior forward was money for the Terriers throughout the tournament, highlighted (of course) by a three-point performance that featured the game-winning goal in a double-overtime win over New Hampshire that pushed BU into the semifinal round.

Brian Dumoulin (BC, defenseman)

Consistently a steadying presence on BC’s back-end throughout the season, Dumoulin was his ever-reliable self in the tournament for the Eagles.

The junior defenseman, who buried the game-winner to eliminate UMass in the quarterfinals, was plus-4 in four games and played a huge role in keeping Maine’s potent offense in check in the championship.

Will O’Neill (Maine, defenseman)

O’Neill had a tough night (minus-2) against BC in the title game, but the Salem, Mass., native was simply superb in helping the Black Bears get that far.

The senior d-man picked up an assist in Maine’s 2-1 win in Game 3 of their quarterfinal matchup with Merrimack before almost singlehandedly beating BU with two goals and a helper in the semifinals.

Parker Milner (BC, goaltender)

Though Kieran Millan’s 45-save performance in the semis certainly earned him consideration for this spot, Milner was just too good to be denied. In four tournament games he allowed a grand total of six goals, stopping 120 of the 126 shots he faced – good for a .952 save percentage.

Saturday’s victory over Maine extended Milner’s winning streak to 15 games.