Bentley went into Saturday’s game against Boston University with several objectives: The Falcons wanted to keep their unbeaten streak alive heading into the break, they wanted to win their first-ever meeting against the Terriers, and they wanted to further prove the notion as others already have that Atlantic Hockey teams are forces with which to be reckoned.
As it turned out, they achieved all of them as they stunned BU (7-8-2) at Agganis Arena, 4-1, in front of 3,220 fans.
Goaltender Branden Komm earned his 36th career victory, overtaking Barratt Davison (Class of ’84) for the most in school history. Bentley (8-7-1) heads into the semester break on a 6-0-1 tear.
“I think this game opened a lot of people’s eyes as to how good we are but I feel like we’ve felt like we were this good for a long time and things are coming together,’’ said Komm. “I can’t tell you how close this team is. We all know we’re playing on a special team and we just want to keep going as far as we can.’’
It was BU’s first loss to an Atlantic Hockey team since Oct. 22, 2011 when Holy Cross edged the Terriers, 5-4.
Both teams played a decent first period although Bentley went into the first intermission with a 1-0 lead.
The lone goal of the opening 20 minutes came at 9:44 when junior defenseman Steve Weinstein took a shot from the left point and it was redirected from the left circle by sophomore center Derek Bacon.
It was Bacon’s second tally of the season.
Early in the second, Bentley doubled its lead with a goal on special teams. With sophomore center Andrew Gladiuk in the penalty box for hitting from behind, the Falcons turned the tables on the BU power play.
Sophomore defenseman Ahti Oksanen lost the puck but regained control in the Bentley end near the blue line but junior center Alex Kubiak knocked it off Oksanen’s stick and ahead for senior left wing Jared Rickord, who raced up ice and beat sophomore netminder Matt O’Connor for the shorthanded goal at 1:40.
The Falcons made it a three-goal lead at 5:45 of the third when junior left wing Brett Switzer beat O’Connor on a shot from the left circle.
BU coach David Quinn took a timeout after the goal to help his team regroup.
The Falcons came close to adding a fourth goal after freshman pivot Robbie Baillargeon was assessed a questionable goaltender interference call at 10:51.
Although the visitors took a little while to set up, they spent a little more than the entire second half of the power play in the BU zone.
They poured on eight shots, had four blocked, had three on net and one went wide. The person most instrumental in keeping the pressure going was junior defenseman Matt Maher, who was relentless in his pursuit of the puck to keep it in the attacking zone.
BU nearly scored during a power play at 13:50. But the shot by sophomore defenseman Matt Grzelcyk made it to the goal line but Komm was able to sweep it away before it crossed.
The Terriers kept after it, though, as the man advantage continued. They were finally rewarded when Oksanen took a shot from the right point that was tipped in by sophomore left wing Matt Lane at 14:56 to make it 3-1.
But senior right wing Brett Gensler, who is the school’s career scoring leader, had an empty-net goal at 18:02 to seal the win.
To say Quinn was displeased was an understatement.
“We got outworked tonight,’’ said Quinn. “There wasn’t a whole lot of good tonight for us other than in goal. Either they’re that fast or we’re that slow. We were just slow tonight. We were slow last weekend, too. That’s going to change, I told our guys that, that’s going to change. I’ve got to do a better job coaching them. I’m embarrassed as a coach for what’s happened the last few weeks. It’s unacceptable.’’