Weekend Hockey Preview: Boston College

The game is here.

Michigan State hockey’s non-conference game against Boston College is one that fans may have circled on their calendars at the start of the season.

Michigan State (3-5-0) will face off against No. 8 Boston College (4-5-0) this Friday at Munn Ice Arena.

Know Thy Enemy and Know Thyself

The Eagles come into this game with Michigan State in a state of urgency.

BC is currently riding a four-game losing streak, with their latest loss coming at home against Harvard, 6-3. Boston College has also suffered losses to Connecticut, Boston University, and UMass-Lowell — and if the Eagles don’t start putting on the breaks, their season could be in jeopardy.

While BC has not seen a win since beating Denver on Oct. 31, they are still one of the best in the nation and likely to see Friday’s game against Michigan State as their salvation.

By the Numbers

On paper, the Spartans may be outmatched, as BC leads most of the categories.

The two that stand out are goals —27 for BC, 19 for MSU— and goals per game —3.00 for BC, 2.38 for MSU.

However, the Spartans do have an edge in goals allowed per game with 2.5 against BC’s 2.56. It appears that the Eagles, who have been struggling on defense, will look to their prolific offense in order to win the game.

For Michigan State, striking early against a wounded BC team, that has dropped four straight and is 2-3 on the road, is critical.

Last Tuesday, Harvard set the tone early in the first with two goals — including a power-play goal — and their defense had limited BC to only three shots. Michigan State needs a similar performance and to keep up the offensive pressure throughout if they hope to survive.

Series History

Friday night marks the first time that the Boston College Eagles have visited East Lansing in 24 years.

The last time these two foes met was in Munn on Nov. 17, 1990, when the Spartans fell to the Eagles, 5-4.

The last time the Spartans beat Boston College was on April 9, 2007, when MSU defeated BC 3-1 to clinch the NCAA championship.

Jason Ruff is the host of Behind the Mask for Impact Sports.

Photo: Brian Bobal/Impact Sports