(on the wrong end of) A Game for the Ages
Miami University was a decided underdog heading into Saturday night’s NCAA Division I Ice Hockey Championship game against Boston University, but Miami seemed determined to continue their trend of upsets in the tournament.
That’s probably what made the end of the game so hard to take.
Miami fought back from an early 1-0 deficit in the first period to tie up the Terriers in the second, then scored two goals late in the third to take a seemingly insurmountable 3-1 lead. They were clogging center ice, keeping BU from exploiting their speed advantage, and hitting as hard as they had all season.
But after that third goal, BU gambled and pulled the goalie with just over three minutes to play in favor of an extra attacker. And in the last minute, BU scored twice in 47 seconds to send the game to overtime.
Miami had its chances in the overtime, but BU capitalized on a fluke goal - deflected off a diving Kevin Roeder - and took the title.
And Miami saw their improbable run come to an end.
To be sure, MIami made the most of their invitation to the NCAAs. After being eliminated from the CCHA tournament at home, there was uncertainty if they would even be invited to the NCAA tournament; they turned out being the next-to-last team in. Once in, however, they proceeded to upset the #1 and #3 seeds in the West Regional, Denver and Minnesota-Duluth. On Thursday they eliminated upstart Bemidji State. And frankly, they gave BU all they could handle and more for 59 minutes.
Most of all, they made us proud.
The silver lining, if there can be any silver lining 90 minutes after losing, is that the team is young; this was supposed to be their rebuilding year. And if the team can keep their focus over the summer, next year should be even better.
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