Well it’s the game nobody wants to be playing in this afternoon as Northeastern takes on Harvard in the Beanpot consolation game. It’s the Huskies’ first time playing in the third place game since 2012, and they’ll be doing it against yet another tough opponent.
Harvard will be the third straight top ten team Northeastern will face, and probably the best out of those three. The Crimson carry a 52.7 close CF% and are outscoring opponents by 1.27 goals per game. Goalie Merrick Madsen’s .933 save percentage would put him behind just two Hockey East goaltenders in that category. They have the best powerplay in the country, converting 30.7% to goals. While their penalty kill is middling, they’ve committed the tenth fewest penalties in the country, limiting their exposure. Altogether, that gives them the fifth best penalty margin nationwide. Oh, almost forgot that they have Hobey Baker hopeful and the country’s second best PPG player, Jimmy Vesey.
Don’t write this off as a fourth place finish for the Huskies just yet, though. Northeastern is coming off playing s tough Lowell team to a tie in their arena. They’ve also done very well against the ECAC this season, beating then top ten team St. Lawrence, tying then third ranked Quinnipiac, and sending Colgate back to the Stone Age. Ryan Ruck had one of this best games of the year last week, and if he keeps up his great run, Northeastern will always have a chance. If the Huskies can get the offense going like they had during their unbeaten run, I like their odds.