This past weekend eight ECACHL teams battled it out in four best-of-three series for the right to challenge the top-4 seeds – including No. 3 Cornell – in next weekend’s quarterfinal round. While favorites Clarkson and St. Lawrence were able to survive, Rensselaer and Union fell to a pair of underdogs in what was an exciting weekend of postseason action.
No. 5 St. Lawrence defeats No. 12 Brown, 2-1
Game 1: Saints 3, Bears 2 (O.T.)
Just 25 seconds into overtime Mike Zbringer put home the rebound after Brown goalie Adam D’Alba knocked away a T.J. Trevelyan shot to give St. Lawrence the win on its home ice at Appleton Arena on Friday night.
Despite the loss, D’Alba was solid in net, turning away 51 Engineer shots on the evening.
The Bears held a 2-0 lead after a Brian McNary power-play goal at 18:59 in the first period and then a Sean Dersch tally at 13:34 in the second.
Yet, St. Lawrence came storming back with three unanswered goals, beginning with Kevin DeVergillio’s 12th goal of the year at 15:30 in the second frame and defender Jared Ross’s wrist shot just 56 seconds into the third, before the game-winning tally.
Game 2: Bears 3, Saints 2
Satuday night at Appleton Arena mirrored the previous night, as the Bears took an early 2-0 lead and D’Alba was again outstanding in net, making a career-high 54 saves. Also, like the night before, Ross was able to net a goal to tie the game at 2-2.
The only difference about this night was that Brown was able to score the golden goal en route to the series-tying win.
Winger Jeff Prough tallied the game-winning mark on a power play with just 6:31 to play in the contest.
Game 3: Saints 5, Bears 4 (O.T.)
In the lone rubber match of the first round, St. Lawrence rookie Brock McBride notched the series-clinching goal 4:28 into the overtime period, sending 2,075 fans at Appleton Arena home happy on Sunday night.
While the game featured nine total goals, only Simon Watson’s tally at 14:51 in the first period for St. Lawrence separated the two teams going into the third frame.
It was at that point when all hell broke loose, as the teams traded scoring runs until Prough netted the game-tying mark with just four seconds remaining in regulation.
But McBride’s sixth goal of the season through traffic ended Brown’s attempt to become the first 12 seed to ever advance in the conference playoffs.
No. 11 Yale defeats No. 6 Yale, 2-0
Game 1: Bulldogs 2, Dutchmen 1 (O.T.)
The defensive battle Friday night on Messa Rink at Union’s Achilles Center was not decided until Yale’s Matt Cohen took a feed from Robert Burns at the right point and notched the game-winner.
Up to that point, neither team could establish an advantage, as David Meckler’s power-play goal for the Bulldogs was counterattacked by a Torren Delforte man-advantage tally midway through the second period.
Yale goaltender Alec Richards had a large role in keeping the Dutchmen in check, as he stopped 40 shots on the evening.
Game 2: Bulldogs 3, Dutchmen 2
For the 10th season in a row, Union failed to make it out of the first round of the conference tournament – this year, however, the squad was bounced in what ended up becoming the longest NCAA men’s hockey game in history.
It took five overtimes and over 141 minutes of hockey before Meckler tipped in a shot while Union was on the power play to give Yale the win.
The Dutchmen, which have now lost a home playoff series for the fourth straight year, started the scoring at 9:55 in the first period on a Bryan Campbell power-play goal. But the Dutchmen later found themselves fighting to even the game late in the third period, and did on a Jason Visser power-play mark at the 11:59 mark in the third period.
No. 10 Quinnipiac defeats No. 7 Rensselaer, 2-0
Game 1: Bobcats 2, Engineers 1
In the midst of all the conference overtimes, Quinnipiac netted two goals by the 4:24 mark in the first period to seal the win at Rensselaer’s Houston Fieldhouse on Friday night.
The goals came on a Jamie Bates wrist shot and David Marshall’s one-timer on the power play, which gave him his team-leading 22nd goal of the season and gave the Bobcats a lead they would not relinquish.
In net, Quinnipiac earned a strong performance Bud Fisher, who tallied 28 saves, and was an Oren Eizenman goal away from his third shutout of the season.
Game 2: Bobcats 4, Engineers 2
Like the night before, the action Saturday night at Houston Fieldhouse started just as early – this time it was Rensselaer was struck first though, as Eizenman notched a power-play goal just 41 seconds into the game.
Yet, Quinnipiac came storming back with three unanswered goals, and by the time the dust had settled, the Bobcats had earned what would be the game-winning goal before the end of the first frame off the stick of Bates.
Fisher was again strong in net, as he stopped 33-of-35 Engineer shots.
No. 8 Clarkson defeats No. 9 Princeton, 2-0
Game 1: Golden Knights 2, Tigers 1
This season, Clarkson has dominated teams on its home ice at Cheel Arena, as the team has gone 14-2-2 there this season.
Friday night was no different, as Mike Sullivan took a pass off the glass from rookie defender Tyrell Mason and slapped a wrist shot into the net for his 14th goal of the season and the eventual game-winner at the 6:27 mark in the third period.
Clarkson goalie David Leggio preserved the win with 23 saves.
Game 2: Golden Knights 5, Tigers 0
Kyle Hagel’s goal on Friday night turned out to be the lone tally for Princeton in the team’s short postseason stint, as Leggio stopped all 20 Princeton shots he faced on Saturday night en route to his first career shutout.
Yet, it was Clarkson’s offense that stole the show, as rookie Chris D’Alvise netted two goals, while eight other Golden Knights tallied a point as the team cruised to victory.
This weekend’s best-of-three quarterfinal match-ups: No. 1 Dartmouth hosts Yale, No. 2 Colgate hosts Quinnipiac, No. 3 Cornell hosts Clarkson, No. 4 Harvard hosts St. Lawrence.
Archived article by Chris Mascaro
Sun Senior Writer