- The Washington Times - Sunday, April 12, 2009

Cody Reichard stood in front of the goal about 15 minutes before the start of the NCAA men's hockey title game at Verizon Center. The Miami (Ohio) freshman goaltender had his arms stretched out over the crossbar, still dressed in his sweats, calmly swaying back and forth while looking at the ice.

It was as if he were saying to himself that this is the same size ice he had played on all season, the same size ice he had performed on while leading Miami to this game.

But this was different. No Miami team had ever played for a national championship of any kind.

The freshman goalie for Boston University, Kieran Millan, though, went through no such pregame ceremony. BU has made 10 trips to the NCAA title game, so playing for a national championship is almost considered part of its birthright.

After Boston University's 4-3 overtime win Saturday night captured its fifth national championship, it may indeed be the Terriers' birthright.

Miami appeared on its way to the upset against the powerful Terriers when the RedHawks scored two goals in the third period - one by sophomore Tommy Wingels in front of the BU net at 12:31, the second just over three minutes later on a goal by freshman Trent Vogelhuber.

But BU, with less than a minute left, scored twice with its goalie pulled - once at 19:01 on a shot by junior Zach Cohen and again 41 seconds later, with sophomore Nick Bonino getting the goal to send it to overtime.

BU claimed its birthright at 11:47 of the overtime period on a shot by sophomore Colby Cohen that got past Reichard. And the game got past Miami when the RedHawks failed to score on seven power-play opportunities in regulation.

Both first-year goalies looked up to the task in the first period, and Millan was particularly tough, holding the line on two Miami power plays and making 10 saves. Reichard was nearly as strong in net, stopping eight shots. But with a little less than five minutes left in the period, freshman forward Chris Connolly got one past Reichard to put BU on the board.

It was a BU crowd at Verizon Center up to that point. But Miami came back early in the second period to tie the score at 1-1 on a shot by junior Gary Steffes, which brought the Miami contingent back in the game. It stayed that way through Miami's third-period goals, then BU came from behind to tie the score.

Coach Jack Parker, 64, a former BU player, has taken his team to the championship game seven times in his long career and has now won three national championships. Saturday's win also gives him 30 career NCAA tournament victories, eclipsing Bowling Green's Jerry York for the most in NCAA history. This was his 23rd appearance in the tournament, breaking the record set by Ron Mason, who made 22 NCAA appearances as a coach. Parker's 13th Frozen Four is also a record.

The Terriers got here after winning one of the most memorable games in tournament history, a 5-4 overtime victory against Vermont.

BU finished with 35 victories this season - the most by any team since Michigan won the same amount in the 1997-98 season. BU has been among the most dominant teams in college hockey most of the season. Since Nov. 25, BU was 28-2-4, including a 17-game unbeaten streak.

Parker, who has coached such college stars as Chris Drury and Mike Eruzione, talked about how special this team was to him before the game.

“I can tell you that if you look at any of the great teams at BU, the best players were the best guys on the team,” he said. “They cared about their teammates. This team has a great attitude.”

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