BOSTON — When goalie Parker Milner arrived at Boston College, crosstown rival Boston University was the defending NCAA and Beanpot champion and had earned the area’s college hockey bragging rights in 12 of the previous 15 years.
The 61-year-old Beanpot trophy soon relocated to Chestnut Hill.
And this group of BC seniors isn’t ready to let it go.
“What coach (Jerry) York is building here is just going to keep moving forward,” Milner said after No. 4 Boston College beat Northeastern 6-3 on Monday night to earn its fourth consecutive Beanpot title.
Already the defending national champions – the Eagles have won three of the last five NCAA titles – this class of BC seniors is the first in school history to go unbeaten in the Beanpot.
“We’re all so excited. This is awesome for us,” said forward Steven Whitney, a senior whose goal with 0.4 seconds left in the second period gave the Eagles a 4-1 lead. “But it’s also awesome that the freshmen got a Beanpot and we gave everyone else a chance to win four in a row, too.”
Johnny Gaudreau scored twice and Milner stopped 20 shots for BC (17-7-2). Milner, the most outstanding player from last year’s NCAA Frozen Four, received the Eberly Award as the Beanpot’s best goaltender.
Kevin Roy, who had a hat trick in Northeastern’s first-round victory over BU, had a pair of goals for the Huskies (8-14-3). Roy was named the tournament’s most outstanding player – the first player from a losing team to earn the honor since BU’s Sean Fields won his second in 2004.
Chris Rawlings made 24 saves for Northeastern, which surprised Boston University in the first round by sending the Terriers to the consolation game, where they’ve played just four times in 30 years.
Harvard (6-15-2) beat No. 13 Boston University (13-12-1) in the consolation game 7-4 earlier Monday.
Boston College fans chanted “Four more years!” as the final seconds ticked off the clock, and then threw red and yellow streamers toward the ice as the Eagles spilled out of their bench for the now-familiar celebration.
Bill Arnold and Patrick Brown also scored for BC. Whitney gave BC a three-goal lead, then Northeastern made it a one-goal game when Roy scored just 11 seconds into the third period and Braden Pimm added another less than four minutes later.
But Eagles defenseman Michael Matheson stickhandled through the middle, drawing the defense to him before backhanding it by Gaudreau to make it 5-3 with 5:23 left. Pat Mullane added an empty-netter with 88 seconds left.
“When you win four in a row and you’ve won three national championships, that brings in a lot of poise,” Northeastern coach Jim Madigan said. “They’re skilled, they’re smart, but they also have a lot of poise.”
Northeastern has not won the tournament since 1988 – the longest losing streak of the area’s four college hockey powers. Harvard last won in 1993, and BU won its unprecedented 29th Beanpot in 2009 before BC went on its current run.
BC beat Harvard 4-1 in the first round and Northeastern beat BU 3-2.
Roy was denied another hat trick when Milner stopped him on a second-period breakaway. The BC goalie also protected a 4-3 lead midway through the third by poking the puck away from Roy, who was alone in front of the net.
“We were really close to getting back,” Roy said. “We couldn’t tie it 4-4, but we had a lot of good chances.”