Miami Faces Final Minute

     Miami of Ohio has faced the reality of being within a minute of the school’s first national championship before Boston University rallied for a 4-3 overtime win in the Division I hockey finale Saturday. He’s some reaction from the RedHawks in a Monday story courtesy of the Oxford (Ohio) Press:

By Pete Conrad, Oxford Press 
     OXFORD, Ohio — Miami University captain Brian Kaufman of Shoreview, Minn., and assistant captain Kevin Roeder tried to be philosophical about a Frozen Four that went so well for the first 119 minutes on the ice.
     Unfortunately for the RedHawks, it was that 120th minute which saw top-ranked Boston University yank the national championship from their grasp with a dramatic comeback.
     “It was kind of an emotional rollercoaster,” Kaufman said, referring both to the season and to the championship game Saturday, April 11 at the Verizon Center, which Boston University won 4-3 in overtime. “With a minute left I would have bet my life we were going to win that game.”
     “Emotions were high last night,” agreed Roeder who, like Kaufman, had just stepped off the team bus to a rousing welcome of more than 100 fans at the front steps of Goggin Ice Arena on Sunday, April 12. “Things didn’t go our way and it’s a hard pill to swallow, but our class leaves this program having made history.”
     No Miami team had gone as far in any NCAA sport.
     Not football, which never has been ranked higher than No. 10 and never has been involved in serious national championship discussions.
     Not basketball, made it to the NCAA Sweet 16 in 1999 behind Wally Szczerbiak but then fell prey to the Kentucki Wildcats.
     Not baseball, which came within one victory of qualifying for the College World Series in 1977 but could not get that victory.
     “No one believed in us,” said Roeder, noting that many people thought the RedHawks were dead in the water after failing to advance past the quarterfinals of the Central Collegiate Hockey Association playoffs. “But as a team we knew we could do whatever we wanted. That was our mind set.”
     Miami’s first appearance in the Frozen Four and its first appearance in an NCAA national championship event are, according to Roeder, just the beginning of more to come.
     “It’s just the starting point for this program,” he said.

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