Boston Bruins: Latest News and Notes on Their College, Junior Prospects

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Boston Bruins: Latest News and Notes on Their College, Junior Prospects
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Alexander Fallstrom, one of three Boston Bruins prospects going on the road for the first round of the ECAC playoffs, will be fighting to extend his college career this weekend.

The senior forward joins his last-place Harvard Crimson in a best-of-three versus the fifth-seeded Dartmouth Big Green. Although, his play over the past month hints that he will put forth no shortage of valiance.

Fallstrom was previously kept scoreless in a 3-2 loss on Jan. 12, the team’s only regular-season visit to Dartmouth, and assisted on Harvard’s lone goal in a 1-1 draw on Feb. 10. The latter performance started an eight-game production streak to close out the homestretch with a 4-5-9 scoring log.

With that streak, Fallstrom finished the regular season tied with Jimmy Vesey for the team lead with 20 points and matched a career high with 12 assists.

Junior Ben Sexton of Clarkson and sophomore Brian Ferlin of Cornell are each carrying a 2012-13 scoring log of 6-13-19 into their respective series versus Brown and Princeton. Fellow Boston draftee Rob O’Gara, whose third-seeded Yale Bulldogs have a bye, will await the results and subsequent re-seeding for next weekend.

Western Michigan, featuring Colton Hargrove and likewise third in their conference, will likewise be off until March 15, when the CCHA quarterfinals commence.

Zane Gothberg and Matt Grzelcyk each have two regular-season games remaining and tight footraces to determine with them. Gothberg’s North Dakota team is tied with Minnesota for second in the WCHA, two points ahead of its upcoming opponent from Mankato and two behind the first-place St. Cloud State.

Grzelcyk’s Boston University Terriers are on the outside looking in as far as the race for one of the top four seeds in Hockey East and home ice for the quarterfinals is concerned.

Based on head-to-head results, the first tiebreaker in the standings, they either need to earn three more points than Boston College or two more than Providence while staying ahead of or tied with Merrimack. Otherwise, they will be playing somewhere other than Agganis Arena in the quarterfinals next week.

The Terriers will be dealing with an aspiring spoiler in last-place Northeastern, who have at least one up-and-coming recruit and a Bruins draft pick in Matt Benning who is still enjoying prosperous times in the USHL.

Benning has points in three of his last five games and his Dubuque Fighting Saints are the only team to have clinched a postseason passport―with another month and 14 games remaining in the regular season, no less.

Four out of five Ontario League teams featuring a Boston draftee have cemented their playoff spots with anywhere from four to seven engagements left on their 68-game regular-season schedule. The lone exception are the probable postseason no-shows from Windsor, featuring Alexander Khokhlachev.

Seth Griffith and the London Knights have clinched first place in the Western Conference with 96 points, leaving Cody Payne and the Plymouth Whalers to fight to retain second place.

Though not likely to catch them, Malcolm Subban’s Belleville Bulls are the only threat to usurp home ice throughout the tournament from the reigning Robertson Cup champion Knights. They boast 85 points with seven games left beginning Wednesday night at home versus the Ottawa 67s.

This Saturday will bear a titanic tangle in the OHL East with a budding Bruin on each side. The top-dog Bulls will visit Anthony Camara and the second-place Barrie Colts.

Depending on those teams’ results Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, their head-to-head battle could be Barrie’s last call to sustain their bid for the highest seed in the conference.

Camara is riding a seven-game production streak dating back to Feb. 1, albeit interrupted by a six-game suspension, and he is five points away from a single-season output of 62 that would match his three-year accumulation from 2009-10 to 2011-12. Saturday, though, will be his first OHL bout with the stingy Subban, his one-time World Junior teammate and potential future Bruins ally.

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