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Men's Hockey: Huskies Lose 8th Straight With 5-1 Setback Against No. 2 Boston College

Boston College exploded for four goals in the first 11 minutes to sink the Huskies.

Spencer Naas scored the lone goal for the Huskies Tuesday night against No. 2 Boston College.
Spencer Naas scored the lone goal for the Huskies Tuesday night against No. 2 Boston College.
Steve Quick/The UConn Blog

HARTFORD — The UConn men's hockey team's difficult stretch has extended to eight straight losses.

The Huskies allowed four goals in the first 10:49 of the first period, as No. 2 Boston College stormed into Hartford and avenged last year's loss with a 5-1 win over UConn Tuesday night.

Austin Cangelosi opened the scoring for Boston College (11-1-0, 5-0-0 Hockey East), which is off to its best start under head coach Jerry York. The junior pushed the puck in during a bit of a scramble when Rob Nichols could not get his glove on the puck.

Fifty seconds later, Colin White put the finishing touches on a 3-on-1 rush, pushing a centering feed from Ryan Fitzgerald past Nichols for his seventh goal of the season. The rush came at the other end of a great buildup play by UConn, during which Spencer Naas dragged the puck into the slot with a chance to score, but his effort was blocked.

Nichols was unfortunate on the third BC goal. Four players were in his line of sight, so Josh Couturier's slap shot from the blue line caught him off guard. Couturier buried the shot for his first career goal.

Quickly out of a media timeout, Miles Wood fired a beautiful shot from the left side past the helpless Nichols two minutes after Couturier's goal. The fourth BC goal of the night brought some back to a simpler time.

UConn settled down after BC's initial barrage. The Huskies (3-10-0, 1-7-0) were outshot 15-3 in the first period, but outshot the Eagles 25-18 the rest of the way. York, who won his 995th career game Tuesday night, said the score was not indicative of the game, especially with the way the Huskies played in the last two periods.

UConn coach Mike Cavanaugh liked what he saw from the Huskies after the first period. He won't focus as much on the shot total as the way the Huskies settled the game down and created good chances. One bright spot from the last two periods was the way players followed their own shots. Jeff Wight and Karl El-Mir both had fantastic double chances at the net, but superstar goaltender Thatcher Demko was relentless, making 29 saves.

The Huskies' lone goal of the night was a great finish by Spencer Naas, who scored his first goal since the home opener against Arizona State Oct. 16. Naas set himself for a shot on the right side of the goal and buried the shot off a pass from Maxim Letunov, who had Demko's attention in the slot.

Matthew Gaudreau scored on an empty-net goal late, when both teams had a player in the penalty box, and the Huskies refused to give up.

The Huskies are off now until Dec. 5, when they host No. 4 UMass Lowell in the first game of a home-and-home series that weekend. UConn has three games left in 2015 – two with the RiverHawks and a home game against No. 13 Merrimack.