After a successful three-point weekend, the Cornell men’s hockey team now sits alone in fifth place in the ECAC. The Red — who tied Clarkson and defeated St. Lawrence at home this weekend — plays all of its remaining games in the ECAC and will look to climb further in the rankings as it approaches the final stretch.
Of the 12 ECAC teams, only Colgate has played as few in-conference games as the Red, and if the teams were ranked in order of winning percentage, Cornell would sit in the three hole, behind only Union and St. Lawrence.
While students were on winter recess, all of the ECAC teams were in action, some continuing to play just about every weekend of the break. There have been some statement wins and a few major upsets as well.
This past weekend, Brown beat Dartmouth on the road, Colgate topped Clarkson and Yale salvaged a tie against Harvard.
However, the Crimson established itself as one of the league’s elite teams by defeating last year’s ECAC champion Quinnipiac. However, Harvard then shockingly lost to RPI along with Union in consecutive nights. Union is currently in first, but RPI is in the cellar with just two wins in thirteen league contests and a 4-21-1 overall record.
Union has lost just one game in league play — a 3-1 loss to Clarkson back in early November. The Dutchman have earned big wins over Harvard and Quinnipiac and are currently ranked number five in the nation. Cornell will travel to Schenectady the weekend after next.
St. Lawrence — who is tied atop the standings with Union — boasts a 9-2-3 record in conference, good for 21 points. Key injuries have slowed the Saints down, however, as they have won just five out of their last ten.
St. Lawrence’s geographic rival, Clarkson, sits in sixth just behind Cornell but has stuck around all season. In addition to being the only ECAC team to take down Union, they also have wins over ranked teams like Vermont and UMass-Lowell.
Yale and Dartmouth are next at seven and eight, respectively. Yale has been playing better hockey as of late and has not lost since early January. Yale won the Ivy League last year and finished second in the ECAC, but has had its struggles without All-American goaltender Alex Lyon, who graduated last spring.
Colgate, Princeton, Brown and RPI round out nine through 12 in the league. The Raiders have lost several close games this year, Princeton took two straight from Quinnipiac and RPI beat Union handily. Clearly, anything can happen in this league.
At this point in the season, each team is only playing ECAC games, and every weekend can alter the standings quite a bit. The season runs until late February, so there is plenty of time left to make up some ground.
Only time will tell who is holding this year’s trophy in Lake Placid, New York at the end of the annual ECAC tournament come March. For Cornell, they’ll just have to take it one game at a time.