PC hockey falls to BC 3-1

Photo provided Providence College

CHESTNUT HILL, Mass. – The 14th-ranked Providence College men’s hockey team dropped a 3-1 decision at No. 8 Boston College at Kelley Rink on Friday night in the Hockey East opener for the Friars.

Providence falls to 2-3-1 (0-1-0 HEA) with the loss, while the Eagles improve to 5-2-1 (1-0-1 HEA) with the win.

A strong third period from Hayden Hawkey gave him a season-high 27 saves. Joe Woll stood tall in the BC cage with 27 stops, 23 coming in the first 40 minutes.

After the Friars killed off consecutive penalties in the early moments of the game, Zach Walker gave the Eagles the lead at 5:39 after he capitalized off a turnover at the Eagles’ blue line and sent a wrister past the glove of Hawkey. Providence had a pair of breakaways in the opening frame looking for the equalizer, but goaltender Joe Woll denied both Scott Conway and Josh Wilkins as they walked in alone.

The Friars took advantage of their second power play of the night as Scott Conway sent a hard pass down low to the goal line and Erik Foley found Brian Pinho with a back-door feed to knot things up at 1-1. The power play goal was the Friars’ eighth in their last three games.

The Friars looked to grab an early lead in the second period after an odd-man rush, but the Eagles in transition went the other way and Matthew Gaudreau finished off a wrister from the right circle to put Boston College back up one at 2-1. Woll stood tall in the Eagles’ net as he turned away all 15 Friar shots in the second period, including back-to-back point-blank chances by Kasper Björkqvist and Bryan Lemos.

The Eagles defense got stingy in the third, holding the Friars to just four shots on goal as Providence pressed for the equalizer. Ron Greco gave the hosts the insurance tally with 2:42 remaining as he fired a shot over the blocker of Hawkey directly off a faceoff win.

The Friars are back in action on Sunday (Oct. 30) for the 31st Mayor’s Cup at Brown’s Meehan Auditorium for a 5 p.m. tilt against the Bears.