Year in and year out, Boston College men’s hockey head coach Jerry York is tasked with manning the helm of a youthful ship. The Eagles are consistently one of the youngest teams in the country—they boasted an average age of 20 years, eight months at the start of the year—but York makes it work.
Despite entering the season picked to finish fourth in Hockey East, York guided BC to a 20-13-3 record, claiming a conference regular season title with an 18-6-0 mark in league play. The longtime coach earned Hockey East Coach of the Year honors for the fourth time as a result, while one of his young stars, Logan Hutsko, claimed the Pro Ambitions Rookie of the Year award.
Hutsko thrived down the stretch and truly broke out in February. He scored a pair of goals against Massachusetts Lowell, then followed with a hat trick in the Beanpot consolation loss to Harvard. It was the first two games of an impressive four-game stretch where he recorded two-plus points in each contest.
The freshman finished the year with 31 points, leading the team with 12 goals and 19 assists. His late-season surge helped the Eagles fend off plenty of challengers in the Hockey East standings, keeping enough distance from the likes of Northeastern and Providence.
BC didn’t win a non-conference game, but York and his roster found plenty of success in the conference. The Eagles came together well and won their last six games entering Friday’s semifinal matchup with rival Boston University.
His run of success is nothing short of impressive. Gunning for a ninth Hockey East Tournament title, York has now posted 20-win seasons for nine years in a row, second only to Denver (17) as the longest active streak in Division I college hockey. He claimed Coach of the Year honors three prior times, winning in 2004, 2011, and 2014. The Eagles won the Hockey East Tournament in 2011, but failed to come away with it in the other two years.
York didn’t just oversee the league’s top freshman, but also the ‘47 Brand Best Defensive Defenseman Award winner in Casey Fitzgerald. The junior played excellently in front of Joseph Woll in the defensive zone and was a threat at times on offense as well, scoring six goals and chipping in 13 assists.
The Eagles are young and have gone through plenty of ups and downs, but under York’s watch, they’re always in position to make a run.
Featured Image by Julia Hopkins / Heights Senior Staff