It was a borderline hit at best. Neither coach commented on the hit itself aside from the "turning point" comment by Eaves. Terry took a shoulder to the head as he was crossing the blue line into the Wisconsin zone and went down hard. Terry's head was down since he was trying to make a move to get around Sexton.
The hit reminded some of the hit that Joey LaLeggia was ejected for in the NCAA Tournament game against Providence last season. As the rule is written, the onus is on the attacking player to let up and avoid high contact. On this play, the refs simply missed the call.
The NCAA wants to rid the sport of these kinds of hits. If they are going to be successful, the referees across all conferences need to enforce this rule consistently. While the LaLeggia ejection was demoralizing and ended whatever chance the Pios had of coming back in that game, the referees got the call right.
Last night, the refs got it wrong by not penalizing Sexton.
To be clear, we are not advocating that players skate with their heads down. It was a mistake by Terry to have his head down (replays showed his head down). But there was ample time and space for Sexton to let up and change his hit and go lower.
Wisconsin players were hitting the Pioneers high throughout the game last night. It will be interesting to see if there is any bad blood carried over into tonight's game, one that the Pioneers need to win.
The Wisconsin State Journal gives the Wisconsin perspective of the 3-3 tie.