PREVIEW: MSU hockey travels to Boston College for a top-10 matchup

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Emily Martin

After their second home sweep of the season, No. 8 MSU Hockey is gearing up for a top ten matchup vs No. 3 Boston College this weekend. This will be the Spartans and the Eagles 27th all-time matchup, with MSU leading 16-9-1 dating back to the first series in the 1958-59 season. 

The Eagles have won the last four of five meetings with the Spartans, the only loss coming from MSU’s national championship win in 2007. 

“That’s what it’s all about when you come to Michigan State. We wanna play against the top teams and BC is one of them,” head coach Adam Nightingale said. “I think it will be a great challenge.”

Last weekend, MSU saw another surge of scorers in their two victories against Canisius. Daniel Russell recorded his first career hat trick in night one and added one more goal in night two, giving him the team lead with five, bringing his point total to seven. Between the two games, the Spartans had a total of 10 goals. 

Freshman goaltending tandem Trey Augustine and Luca Di Pasquo split the net in the Canisius series and put up career highs. Augustine had 42 saves on night one and improved his record to 4-0. Di Pasquo had his first collegiate start on night two and made a statement. Di Pasquo had a total of 30 saves and picked up his first career win.

While MSU had two big victories last weekend, the team is still looking for some improvement and discipline as they continue to develop. Against Canisius, the Spartans had a total of 52 penalty minutes, which included two majors in the second night. Turnovers and miscommunications still lingered on the ice as this young team continues through the first month of play. 

“As we start cleaning up and get better away from the puck we have a chance to be a pretty good team,” Nightingale said. “We will find out a lot about our group this weekend.”

Looking at the Eagles, the team is currently 3-1-0 on the season, with their only loss coming from No.2 Denver last weekend. Will Smith took the team lead in points after last weekend’s matchups against Denver and RPI with three goals and one assist over the weekend. Smith is tied for the team lead in goals with Cutter Gauthier, who had two goals last weekend against RPI. 

Boston College, much like MSU, has a whole batch of newcomers joining the team this year with 14 new players. Two more incoming freshmen, along with Smith, Ryan Leonard and Gabe Perreault were drafted in the first round of the 2023 NHL draft. Smith was the highest draft pick in Eagles history going 4th to the San Jose Sharks. All three played with the USNTDP and are a part of the six players on the Eagles squad that were coached by Nightingale.

The teams will play games Thursday and Friday at 7 p.m. Spartan Sports Report Directors Marin Klein and Aleesa Luecker will be on the scene at Chestnut Hill for the series. Make sure to follow along on SSR socials for series updates.

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