WORCESTER, Mass. — Chris Kreider scored twice and Parker Milner stopped 20 shots to lead top-seeded Boston College to a 2-0 win against Air Force on Saturday in the NCAA Northeast Regional.
The Eagles (30-10-1) are looking to take a familiar route to the Frozen Four and another NCAA championship. Three times in the past 11 years they’ve advanced from Worcester and captured the NCAA title, winning it in 2001, ’08 and ’10.
It was the 16th straight win for the top-ranked Eagles.
BC will face defending champion Minnesota-Duluth in the regional final on Sunday night after the Bulldogs beat Maine 5-2 in the second game.
The Falcons (21-11-7), outplayed for long stretches of the game, kept it close thanks to solid defensive play in front of goaltender Jason Torf, who made 33 saves.
It was the first time Air Force was shutout this season.
Kreider made it 1-0 just 7:39 into the game on a nice feed from Kevin Hayes, who swung around the net and slipped a pass in front. Kreider one-timed it past Torf. His power-play goal with 1:21 left in regulation sealed the win.
Milner made a solid save about a minute after Kreider’s score, making a pad save on Scott Holm’s backhander from the slot. Holm fanned as he attempted to collect the rebound.
BC has allowed two or fewer goals 15 times during its winning streak.
The Eagles controlled play during long stretches for most of the opening period, but Air Force made a brief flurry late.
Neither team had many good scoring chances in the second period. BC’s Johnny Gaudreau had the best when he broke in alone, but Torf made a pad save as he tried to tuck it between his pads.
The Eagles, the tourney’s overall No. 1 seed, captured the Hockey East regular season and tournament championships. Air Force did the same in its league — the Atlantic Hockey Association.
BC, which improved to 9-1 all-time in Worcester, has won all six meetings between the schools.
MINNESOTA 7, BOSTON UNIVERSITY 3
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Jake Hansen scored two goals and Nate Schmidt had two assists, leading Minnesota to the regional final.
It was the first NCAA tournament win by the Gophers in five years.
Kyle Rau, Jake Parenteau, Seth Helgeson, Nico Sacchetti and Nick Bjugstad also scored and Kent Patterson made 31 saves for the Gophers (27-13-1), who will play North Dakota on Sunday for a spot in the Frozen Four.
Wade Megan, Ross Gaudet and Adam Clendenning scored and Alex Chiasson had two assists for the Terriers (23-15-1), who finished the season on an 8-9 slump. This was their first NCAA tournament appearance since winning the national championship in 2009.
NORTH DAKOTA 3, CENTRAL MICHIGAN 1
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Michael Parks, Corban Knight and Brock Nelson scored for North Dakota.
Aaron Dell made 25 saves for UND (26-12-3), which won its eighth straight game.
Kyle O’Kane scored his seventh goal of the season and Frank Slubowski finished with 24 saves for the Broncos (21-14-6).
UNION 4, UMASS LOWELL 2
BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — Union College reached the Frozen Four for the first time with a 4-2 win against Massachusetts-Lowell in the NCAA East Regional on Saturday night.
Daniel Ciampini, Kyle Bodie, Jeremy Walsh and Josh Jooris scored for the Dutchmen (25-7-7), who were making their second appearance in the Division I NCAA tournament.
Union will face the Midwest Regional champion in the national semifinals on April 5 in Tampa, Fla.
Troy Grosenick, a Hobey Baker Award finalist, made 19 saves for Union.
The River Hawks’ Doug Carr made 35 saves, and Matt Ferreira and Terrence Wallin scored.