November 24, 2008

Dartmouth’s five-game win streak ends at Lynah Rink

Print More

The men’s hockey team had little trouble on Saturday night stopping a red-hot Dartmouth squad that was riding a five-game winning streak. Senior forward and co-captain Michael Kennedy’s power play goal just 2:38 into the game gave the Red a lead it wouldn’t relinquish, as Cornell went on to score twice more and take the victory, 3-1.
Both teams were coming off victories the previous night — Cornell (4-0-2, 4-0-2 ECAC Hockey) downed Harvard on Friday, 2-1, while Dartmouth (5-3-0, 5-2-0) shut out Colgate, 1-0. Ultimately, it was the Red’s solid play on offense and a few clutch penalty kills that gave Cornell the edge over the Green. The Red’s other goals came courtesy of sophomore forward Tyler Roeszler and junior defenseman Justin Krueger, with two assists from junior forward Joe Scali in the first multi-point game of his career.
[img_assist|nid=33830|title=Up against the wall|desc=Junior defenseman Justin Krueger battles a Dartmouth player Saturday. Krueger tallied one goal.|link=node|align=left|width=|height=0]
Kennedy scored on the first of Cornell’s four man-advantage opportunities. He received a pass from sophomore forward Joe Devin, took a fruitless shot on goal, then recovered the rebound and snuck the puck past Dartmouth goalie Jody O’Neill for the 1-0 lead.
The game seemed like a foregone conclusion throughout the second period. The Red outshot Dartmouth 16-2 in the period and Roeszler’s goal, off an assist from Scali and a rebound from a shot by senior defenseman Jared Seminoff, gave the home team a 2-0 lead.
Cornell pushed the lead to three just 6:29 into the period when Krueger took an assist from Scali and slapped a shot through a logjam in front of Dartmouth’s goal.
“We were putting a lot of pressure on them,” Krueger said. “Trying to force it up, force it deep and get a lot of shots on them. Scali was working it down low and got up the boards to me in front of the net. There were good screens in front of the net, which is very important, the goalie couldn’t see anything so the puck went right through.
“I couldn’t see, I just shot it as hard as I could,” he said.
Whatever Dartmouth head coach Bob Gaudet told his players during the second intermission seemed to work — the Green came out fired up and aggressive on offense. Dartmouth outshot the Red in the final period, 18-4, giving junior goalie Ben Scrivens plenty of work. He responded to the pressure, posting 17 of his 28 saves in the period.
“The guys played great in front of me,” Scrivens said. “The first half of the third we really didn’t have much going on. They’re a good team, they didn’t want to lose the game, so they started pressuring more. As a goalie you can never control what kind of shots, the amount of shots, you just have to be ready for anything.”
The one shot that found its way through came 3:54 into the final stanza off the stick of Doug Jones — tallying his first career goal. The goal was all that Scrivens would yield in the period, as he held firm even during 1:51 of two-man advantage play for Dartmouth.
Two of the Red’s top defenders, Seminoff and junior defenseman Brendon Nash, got called for penalties and had to watch from the box while makeshift penalty kill units of freshman forward Riley Nash, Kennedy and Krueger, and Scali, senior forward Evan Barlow and sophomore defender Mike Devin held the Green to just five shots.
“We used two forwards because [freshman defender Keir Ross] got dinged up in a knee-to-knee contact,” Schafer said of his penalty kill unit in the third period. “We’re down three of our top penalty killers right off the bat. I thought they did a great job. … To kill it off was a big turning point for us.”
Though the Red came out unhurt by the 5-on-3, the action got hairy for a period when Scrivens was forced to lay on his side to make back-to-back saves.
“Stuff happens quickly, obviously things don’t go the way you plan and the way you practice,” Scrivens said. “I guess my thought process was to give them the hardest shot possible, which would be going absolute shelf. I think if I was to try to get up it would have opened a hole where maybe a soft one could’ve gotten in.”
Conventional goalkeeping style or not, the Red is still undefeated on the season and tied with Dartmouth and Harvard for second place in ECAC Hockey.