I was thinking about the last hockey game I went to as a spectator. BC was playing UMASS-Lowell and came up short, losing 4-2. The game was marked by little offensive action from the Eagles and the Riverhawks pretty much stole the game away early on.
It did not feel like the same Conte Forum that sent Notre Dame hockey home crying in mid-November.
I launched into ADD mode, successfully diverting myself from the on-ice action.
My attention turned to my friends donning SuperFan gold, cheering from the rickety upper-deck bleachers in Conte Forum. I noticed the BC Pep Band, charging the crowd with its ever-popular rendition of the Dropkick Murphy’s “Shipping Up to Boston.” I saw alumni, maroon hats in hand, shaking their heads in disapproval. Oh, come on. UMASS-Lowell? Really?
I realized that I was going to miss the feeling of fandom, at least until football season. Nothing quite equates to the feeling of being with your best friends, cheering on a common passion. It sounds touchy-feely, but I cannot think of many greater moments than the ones spent at Alumni Stadium and Conte Forum.
Oh, and Shea Field in all of its brilliance.
Distance only makes the heart grow fonder, though, so quell your BC homesickness with some of the best sports moments of the year:
5.) BC upends Maryland on Rettig’s
The Boston College Eagles of 2012 did something that the Boston College Eagles of 2007, a legitimate contender to play in the national championship game, could not do. Beating the Terps at home, BC advanced to 2-6 on the season. There was talk of a late-season resurgence from the Eagles, but that quickly faded after a 28-14 loss to Wake Forest the next week.
Still, Chase Rettig demonstrated an extraordinary ability to operate under pressure. The highly scrutinized offensive schemes of the Spaziani years worked, and Johnathan Coleman was wide—and I mean wide—open on the flank. The sequence of plays that unfolded showed some promise for the years to come.
For the several hundred SuperFans still in attendance, the end-result was a blessing. Weathering the chilly New England temperatures becomes a lot more laborious when your football team struggles to advance the ball past midfield.
Something finally clicked in that game and the Eagles won, 20-17.
4.) The Hiring of Steve Addazio
Instead of clouding last year’s football season with any more negativity, spot number four goes to the hiring of Steve Addazio, not the firing of Frank Spaziani.
A hearty, passionate, and serious man, Addazio has what it takes to elevate BC to its previous “glory years” and beyond.
With a keen eye for recruiting and a coaching agenda that infuses discipline and loyalty into all facets of team life, Addazio’s goals for next year are clear: to win the first game of the year, move on from there, and eventually become bowl eligible.
He acknowledges that every rebuilding effort is bound to see some faults down the road, but he refuses to use that as an excuse for not maximizing the potential of his student-athletes.
BC has amped up its recruiting efforts, too. According to Rivals.com, Addazio’s staff has racked in the 28th best recruiting class in the nation, as of early May.
Pessimists will be shocked when Addazio gets the team over .500 this coming fall, but those already “dazzled” by the “Dazzler” (Addazio’s nickname) knew it was coming all along.
3.) Fourth Consecutive Beanpot
Although the Boston College hockey team lost to Union in the first round of the NCAA tournament, the Eagles still had a successful season, winning the Beanpot for the fourth year in a row.
Johnny Gaudreau netted two goals, and while Northeastern made somewhat of a comeback, BC never let up.
What seemed routine at the time ended up being one of the defining moments for a BC hockey squad left out of the Frozen Four.
It will be interesting to see if Jerry York’s squad can win a fifth consecutive Beanpot next year.
2.) Hanlan’s 41-point explosion
Olivier Hanlan had been delivering for the BC basketball team all year—even before his monstrous performance against Georgia Tech in the ACC tournament. He always registered double digits, averaging 15.4 points per game and shooting 45.7% from the field.
The Quebec native really exploded onto the national scene with his record-breaking performance against Georgia Tech. Hanlan’s 41 points were an ACC freshman record and solidified his case for ACC Rookie of the Year, an accolade he won soon after the game.
His incredible performance breathed new life into a young, inexperienced team, ultimately giving SuperFans a precursor of what’s to come for next year.
If Hanlan and Co. keep it up, there could be a lot more wins under Coach Steve Donahue’s belt after next season.
1.) York’s 925th
What more can truly be said? The man embodying everything beautiful about Boston College became the winningest coach in college hockey history this year. Jerry York has always been a source of consistency. He brings glory and success to BC’s hockey program year after year.
It’s time for plans of a Jerry York statue adjacent to Conte. Although Coach York’s modesty would undeniably look down on that, it’s one of those things that will be done sooner or later.
Cherish these memories. Before you know it, new ones will surface. Steve Addazio’s football team has shed any sense of mediocrity and will look to be bowl eligible in the winter. Olivier Hanlan and Co. host a swell of tough ACC opponents at home, but have the tools needed to make a run for the NCAA tournament in March. Jerry York’s squad, potent and skilled as ever, return Johnny Gaudreau, Kevin Hayes, and Michael Matheson—all considered invaluable NHL prospects.
Is 2013-2014 a banner year in Chestnut Hill? We will soon find out.
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Feature image taken by Billy Foshay / Gavel Media.