Boston College advances to title game for first time in 12 years

Apr. 11—ST. PAUL, Minn. — Boston College is back in the NCAA national championship game for the first time in 12 years.

The Big 10 is still without a title.

The Eagles beat Michigan 4-0 in the NCAA Frozen Four semifinals Thursday night in Xcel Energy Center to reach Saturday's title game.

Boston College of Hockey East will play Denver of the National Collegiate Hockey Conference in the final at 5 p.m. Saturday.

The Eagles last played in the championship in 2012, when they topped Ferris State in the final. They're seeking their sixth NCAA championship.

Boston College's high-end NHL Draft picks delivered against the Wolverines.

Will Smith, the No. 4 overall pick by the San Jose Sharks, scored twice. Gabe Perreault, a first-round pick of the New York Rangers, scored a goal and added two assists. Cutter Gauthier, the No. 5 overall pick and a Hobey Baker Award Hat Trick finalist, added a tally on a breakaway.

"Interesting game," Boston College coach Greg Brown said. "I thought we did a great job of capitalizing when we had chances, but Michigan did a great job coming out of their zone with a ton of speed. Even though we were ahead a few goals, I never felt comfortable until the game was settled."

The Eagles scored late in the first, then tallied back-to-back goals in 49 seconds in the middle frame to separate from the Wolverines, who lost in the Frozen Four semifinals for a third-straight year.

Michigan's loss means the Big 10 will go another year without a national championship.

The conference has yet to win one since its formation in 2013-14. The last Big 10 team to win one was Michigan State in 2007. The Spartans were in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association back then.

Boston College, the tournament's No. 1 seed, has been red hot.

The Eagles have won 15-straight games.

Boston College's last loss was Feb. 5 to Boston University at the Beanpot.

"I remember the days when I was watching Johnny Gaudreau at the Frozen Four," Smith said. "It would be unbelievable to get that trophy just like he did."