John Curry has found a home between the pipes at BU
John Curry has made his mark in Boston University hockey
John Quackenboss photo
BU University Relations
First, there was the young kid from Minnesota
with Midwestern values just looking for a chance to play college
hockey somewhere, anywhere.
Then, there was the Hall of Fame coach, the
national champion, the legend who grew up in a small city
outside of Boston and made his home just a few miles down
the street on Comm Ave for the next 30-plus years.
The kid bounced around to the Taft School in
Connecticut after heading east from Minnesota and then found
himself at Boston University, without a scholarship but with
the chance to take the ice under the guidance of that legend.
The chance, not the guarantee.
It didn’t appear that these two should
have even had the chance to cross paths, but now the player,
John Curry, and the coach, Jack Parker, will go down in every
hockey history book together, just like they were a perfect
match all along.
Curry showed his worth as a goaltender, and
the walk-on promptly stepped into the scene to follow the
footsteps of Terrier netminders like Sean Fields and Rick
And during his year-long stint as the full-time starter, Curry
is starting to create some footsteps of his own.
The first Friday in November, with BU on the
heels of a two-game losing streak and having blown a 2-0 lead
at then-undefeated Vermont, Curry and the rest of the Terriers
stepped up their game and promptly finished off a 4-2 upset.
And though it was a win that may have provided the jumpstart
this team needed, the game’s outcome carried a little
more significance with it than just that.
It was Parker’s 300th Hockey East victory
on the Terrier bench, making him the only person in the hockey
world who can make that claim.
This isn’t the only milestone Parker has
reached in the last 12 months, though. On Dec. 3, 2004, the
Terriers overcame a 2-1 deficit to knock out hated Boston
College, 3-2, giving Parker career win number 700.
And exactly one month after that, on Jan. 3
of this year, the Terriers rang in their brand new $95 million
dollar Agganis Arena with a 2-1 victory over Minnesota.
Fittingly, Curry recorded the win in each of
those games, too. Not bad for a kid who was paying his own
way to BU while trying to find the time to shore up his goaltending
skills so he could create an opportunity to earn some ice
“That is one of the coolest things,”
Curry said. “You hear stories about guys who played
in the ’90s and the ’80s, and you start to realize
that people might be saying that about you when you leave,
depending on what you leave behind here.
“Obviously, Coach Parker’s legacy
is going to be talked about, and certain games and certain
instances like his 300th [Hockey East] win and 700th [overall]
win, Beanpot titles; just to be a part of that and to have
your name mentioned in the same sentence is pretty cool.”
And it’s not like Curry picked up those
wins by default. He was spectacular in the three games, only
allowing a total of five goals while making 64 stops. Like
all great players, Curry came up with big plays when it mattered
most, stopping 20 of those shots in the third period and not
allowing a single puck past him during each of the game’s
His 10 saves during the third period against
Vermont were a big reason the Terriers were able to rebound
with a win following two lackluster efforts in losses to Renssalaer
“[That] weekend was what we had grown
accustomed to see him playing the year before when he was
very solid, not only by not giving up many goals, but the
way he handled the puck, how he was handling rebounds and
how poised he looked around his own net,” Parker said.
“It was nice to see him back to form, and we certainly
hope that continues.”
Following a Hockey East semifinal shellacking
at the hands of New Hampshire and soon after a first-round
exit in the NCAA Tournament by way of a loss to North Dakota
in Worcester, just 45 miles west of Boston, the Terriers lost
freshman sensation Chris Bourque to the Washington Capitals’
organization in the offseason and proceeded to drop two of
their first three games this season. Needless to say, there
was some cause for concern moving into November with the Catamounts
and Black Bears on their weekend menu.
After the win over UVM, the Terriers traveled
north to Alfond Arena, where Maine hadn’t lost a game
in 366 days, a place the team recently swept two-time defending
national champion Denver. Curry did his part with 37 saves
– 19 in the third period – and the offense did
just enough to give BU a 2-1 win and a big weekend sweep of
two teams that were ranked nationally in the top-10.
“Individually, for everyone on the team,
we knew it was a confidence booster because we knew we had
a good team, but we had yet to prove it to ourselves,”
Curry said of the pair of wins.
Though the weekend gave the Terriers the kick
start they needed as they head deeper into their Hockey East
schedule, it added more to the BU tradition than anything.
“Three hundred wins is huge,” Curry
said. “It’s really cool to be in the net for stuff
like that, even the 700th win last year against BC and the
first game in the new rink. That stuff is going down in history,
so it’s pretty cool to be a part of that.”
To think, the kid from 1,400 miles away, who
grew up a Minnesota Golden Gophers fan, finds his way into
the heart of one of the busiest cities on the east coast,
eventually to find himself right in the center of one of the
most successful collegiate athletic programs ever.
And he is enjoying every moment of it. Why shouldn’t
he? He didn’t know if he would even have the chance
to succeed at the next level, let alone have the opportunity
to lay his own prints into Terrier hockey record books. So
while Jack Parker, the man who gave him that chance, is continuously
captaining the BU ship to great things, take a look at John
Curry, the former walk-on who is having a great time just
being able to take the ride.