Just a few weeks ago, it wasn’t clear who would start between the pipes for No. 6/5 Cornell men’s hockey. But freshman Matt Galajda has eliminated any doubts about the position, dominating in net for the 6-0 Red and earning himself ECAC Goaltender of the Week for his efforts in the team’s weekend sweep of Dartmouth and Harvard.
This weekend, Galajda racked up his second career shutout with 16 saves in a 3-0 win over the Green, followed by a bounce-back 22-save performance in the Red’s dramatic, last-second win over Harvard. After allowing two first-period goals, the freshman shut the door on Harvard the remainder of the game to keep his team within striking distance.
Only six games into the season and his career, Galajda is tied for second-most shutouts for a freshman goaltender in Cornell history. He holds a .942 save percentage — fourth-best in the country — and a 1.32 goals against average — second best in the country.
The lone rough outing for the young netminder came Nov. 4 at Princeton, when he surrendered three first-period goals before being pulled in favor of senior Hayden Stewart, who has been battling injury all season. Just as his team bounced back to down the Tigers, 5-4, Galajda himself bounced back the following weekend. After blanking Dartmouth, Galajda said he played with the “edge” that had been missing at Princeton.
Galajda and his undefeated teammates will take the ice at Lynah for a key ECAC series this weekend, taking on St. Lawrence and No. 8/7 Clarkson.