2012 M. HOCKEY | ECAC Preview: Undefeated Dartmouth Surprises League

November 16, 2012 12:00 am0 comments
Scott Eckl

Dart­mouth

5-0-1, 4-0 ECAC

Coming into the 2012-2013 campaign as one the of the breakthrough teams, the Big Green has not lost a game yet. Finishing last year at 8-11-3 in the ECAC, Dartmouth has beaten Yale, Brown, Rensselaer, and 2012 Frozen Four finalist Union, all at home. Junior forward Eric Robinson leads the team and is tied for first in the league with seven goals. Junior goaltender Cab Morris leads all ECAC goalies with a 1.22 goals against average (GAA), and had an impressive shutout, 4-0, against Rensselaer with 18 saves. Look for senior forward Dustin Walsh to lead the Big Green to a surprising season.

 

Union

6-2-1, 3-1 ECAC

The Dutchmen were 60 minutes away from a spot in the National Championship game last year before falling to Ferris State, 3-1, in the Frozen Four. This year Union comes in as one of the favorites in the ECAC. With two early blowout wins against Rensselaer and a 6-2 victory over Harvard, the Dutchmen are on the right track. Senior forward Kyle Bodie leads the ECAC with 10 assists while junior goaltender All-American candidate Troy Grosenick continues to excel with a .910 save percentage and a .786 winning percentage.

 

Quinnipiac

 5-3-1, 2-0 ECAC

Quinnipiac has two early wins in the ECAC against Colgate in overtime and against Cornell, 4-1. The Bobcats’ senior forward Russell Goodman scored two goals — including the game winner in the 3-2 victory over Colgate while their other senior forward, Jeremy Langlois, is among the league leaders with a +7. Going forward, Quinnipiac looks forward to big production out of junior forwards Jordan Samuels-Thomas, a transfer from Bowling Green State, and Connor Jones — two players listed in the preseason as offensive threats.

 

Princeton

2-2, 2-0 ECAC

The Tigers are a perfect 2-0 in the ECAC defeating Cornell, 5-3, and earning a shutout against Colgate, 4-0. Top scoring junior forward Andrew Calof is perhaps the team’s most talented player and a key to their success in 2012-2013. Despite the early season success, insidecollegehockey.com, had the Tigers at ten in the preseason ECAC rankings. Princeton leads the conference with a 36.4 power-play percentage.

 

Harvard

 3-2, 2-2 ECAC

The Crimson has had early wins against Brown and Rensselaer, but lost to Yale and Union. Harvard lost senior forward Alex Killorn, who had 20 points in the team’s last 13 games in 2011-2012 that led them to a berth in the ECAC Hockey Championship Game. Freshman forward Jimmy Vesey has been impressive early on in 2012-2013 with five goals and two assists in just five games. The Crimson is up for an important early season showdown at Cornell, today, Friday, Nov. 16 at Lynah.

 

Yale

3-2-1, 2-2 ECAC

The Bulldogs have benefitted early on from senior goaltender Jeff Malcolm’s league leading .949 save percentage and five goals from star senior forward Antoine Laganiere. A big road victory at Harvard, 5-1, and a home win against St. Lawrence, 4-2, has Yale off to a decent start as the team has a break this weekend before going to Colorado during Thanksgiving week to play Denver and Colorado College. Yale has the most shots on goal in the conference with 142 and owns the league’s best penalty kill, not allowing a goal 94.4 percent of the time.  

 

           Clarkson

 1-4-4, 1-0-1 ECAC

While the Golden Knights have not lost yet in the ECAC with an early win against Yale, 1-0, Clarkson may have a long season ahead of them. They lost four of the top seven scorers from last year, including goaltender Paul Karpowich. Freshman goalie Greg Lewis earned the shutout against the Bulldogs, Nov. 9, while junior forward Jarrett Burton leads the team with five goals.

 

 Cornell

3-2-1, 1-2-1 ECAC

The Red made it to the second round in last year’s tournament, but lost to Ferris State, 2-1. Along with Union, Cornell is the other favorite to win the league and make it to the Frozen Four. Sophomore forwards John McCarron, Joel Lowry, and Cole Bardreau seem to be the key to the Red’s success this year. Senior forward John Esposito has had early season success coming off an injury-plagued 2011-12 campaign, with three goals and one assist. Junior goaltender Andy Iles remains the Red’s opponents’ biggest focus, as he is fourth in the league with a .927 save percentage. Cornell plays Harvard and Dartmouth this weekend before the Madison Square Garden game on Nov. 24 against Michigan. 

 

Brown

1-3-2, 0-2-2 ECAC

The Bears have suffered early season losses at Harvard and Dartmouth and two ties at home against St. Lawrence and Clarkson. Brown came into the season with little expectations from experts and so far the team’s play has proven predictions correct. The Bears have one of the league’s worst power-plays converting only 11.1 percent of the time and one of the league’s worst goals-per-game average at 2.25. Sophomore forward Matt Lorito leads the team with three goals in just six games.  

 

St. Lawrence

5-2-1, 0-1-1 ECAC

The Saints’ senior forward Kyle Flanagan is perhaps the league’s most consistent and less-talked about players. Flanagan leads the league in points with 16 and is tied for the league lead in goals with seven. St. Lawrence has only played two games in the ECAC, losing to Yale, 4-2, and drawing even against Brown, 3-3. The Saints were not projected to be a contender in the ECAC, but Flanagan, the team’s star forward, is an All-American and Hobey Baker candidate and will play an important role if they want to be spoilers down the stretch.

 

Colgate

4-6-1, 0-3-1 ECAC

The Raiders lost two key players to the NHL, Austin Smith and Chris Wagner, and have had a  rough start in 2012-2013. Colgate lost early games to Cornell, Quinnipiac and Princeton. The team looks forward to a road weekend November 16-17 at Dartmouth and Harvard. Junior goalie Eric Mihalik has 205 saves, good for second-best in the league. Freshman forward Darcy Murphy leads all Raiders’ with five goals.

 

Rensselaer

1-5-2, 0-4 ECAC

The Engineers have struggled to get off on the right start in 2012-2013. Two losses to Union, one to Harvard and one to Dartmouth puts Rensselaer in big hole to begin the ECAC season. Sophomore forward Jacob Laliberte leads the team with four goals and six assists. The Engineers are among the league’s worst in total goals, assists and power-play goals. The one thing that the Engineers have going for them is the team’s ranking as number one in the league in home attendance average with 4,345 fans per game.