In a tournament that saw them score nine goals against Yale and seven goals against Miami of Ohio, the tournament's overall No. 1 seed, it would be difficult to imagine a more fitting end for the Boston College Eagles than a 5-0 drubbing of the Wisconsin Badgers.
The Eagles, led by forward Cam Atkinson and superb goalkeeping from junior John Muse, captured their second national title in the last three years and the fourth in program history.
The victory avenged a 2006 loss to the Badgers in the national title game and helped to erase the woes of the dismal 2009 season between titles. The Eagles came into the game as hot as any team in the country having not lost in their last 13 games.
Ben Smith's first period goal for the Eagles proved to be the game winner of a game that remained 1-0 until the third period. The Eagles tacked on four in the third, including two from the team's leading scorer Cam Atkinson, and with the stellar play of goalie John Muse preserving the shut out, celebrating was the only thing left for the Eagles to do.
The matchup showcased the Eagles top flight speed against the Badgers size and physical play. The Eagles speed advantage was evident at multiple points throughout the game and played a crucial role in the majority of their scoring chances. On one of Atkinson's goals, he started the play level with the defense men at the Wisconsin blue line and simply won the race to the net before burying the puck.
This speed is what made the potent Eagles lineup the third-highest scoring unit in the nation and the better team Saturday night in Detroit. Wisconsin was never able to get things going as Boston College used its overwhelming speed to consistently pester and frustrate Wisconsin. It was a rare moment when a Wisconsin player was able to carry the puck without a Boston College defender either poke checking, hooking, or bumping him.
In the end the victory adds to the resumes of one of college hockey's most storied programs and most legendary coaches. The victory marks the third consecutive year that the victor was a Hockey East school from the city of Boston who had also captured the bean pot title in that season (the other two being Boston College again in 2008 and Boston University in 2009).
Boston College's superfans will have plenty to celebrate tonight as well as in the future as they will only be graduating four players this May and will retain leading scorer Cam Atkinson and now two time national title winning goaltender John Muse, who with the victory improved his NCAA tournament record to 8-0 all time.