Sure, the Minutemen are the No. 8 seed in the Hockey East tournament and Boston College is not only the No. 1 seed but the No. 1 team in the nation heading into today's best-of-three series opener at 7:30 p.m.
But UMass (13-16-5) won the season series with the Eagles 2-1, including once when BC (25-10-1) was ranked No. 1.
Game two is Saturday at 7 p.m. If necessary, game three is Sunday at 7 p.m. All three are at Conte Forum.
"When we bring our best we're just as good as any other team in this country," UMass senior forward T.J. Syner said. "We proved that against them earlier in the season. It's bringing it on a consistent basis. There's no more important time to bring it than this weekend. .... They're not going to take us lightly just because we're the No. 8 seed. The fact that we beat them twice is in the back of their mind."
Beating the Eagles twice during the regular season and winning a tournament series against them are two different things.
"That's definitely a confidence booster for us knowing that we did beat BC twice during the regular season," senior Danny Hobbs said. "But playoffs is a different type of game atmosphere."
Read more of Matt Vautour's UMass hockey faces top-ranked Boston College after taking season series.