November 18, 2012

M. HOCKEY | Harvard Capitalizes on Chances, Cornell Does Not

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Although the Lynah Faithful came out in full force on Friday, the Red was not able to deliver a win for its fans. Unable to capitalize on its chances, Cornell lost to Harvard, 4-1.

“[The game was] certainly disappointing in front of our Lynah Faithful,” said senior forward Greg Miller. “I thought we had some opportunities to certainly score and put the puck in the back of the net, it just didn’t seem to go in. If you can’t score, and they are capitalizing on their opportunities, it’s not going to go your way.”

A scoreless game was broken with around five minutes left in the first period, when a flurry of goals all came at once. At 14:32, Harvard’s Alex Fallstrom scored the Crimson’s first goal of the game. Just 26 seconds later, the Red was able to score one of its own. The Red’s only goal of the night came from freshman forward John Knisley, who scored his first collegiate goal. Miller started off the play and then passed to classmate and linemate Joel Lowry, who sent it to Knisley up the right wing. The puck went past Crimson goaltender Raphael Girard just below his arm at 14:58 to tie up the game.

“It was a nice relief, [although it] would have felt better if we got the win there,” Knisley said. “But Miller made a good play in front of the net there blocking a shot and he moved up to Lowry and really I just threw it on net trying to create a rebound and it happened to go into the back of the net.”

However, Harvard answered yet again, as the third goal in just over a minute went to Crimson’s Mike Seward. Despite the Harvard’s lead at the close of the first period, the Red had outshot them, 11-7, and controlled much of the play and the physical game throughout.

“It’s obviously frustrating to lose a game,” said head coach Mike Schafer ’86. “You can sense the frustration from our guys in not scoring goals and getting off opportunities and bearing our chances and then it compounds itself.”

Although Cornell played a sound second period, a Red defensive turnover leading to a two-on-one led to another goal for the Crimson as the second period was drawing to a close. Harvard claimed a 3-1 lead going into the third period.

“The third goal that they scored is a direct result of [us having] played a pretty good second period and then Nick [D’Agostino]’s just trying to do something too much,” Schafer said.

Again, Cornell put forth a solid effort in the third period, but was unable to capitalize on any of its chances. With a minute and a half left in the game, Schafer took junior goaltender Andy Iles out of the net, and Harvard’s Petr Placek was able to earn an empty netter just 14 seconds before the buzzer.

The final 4-1 score is not reflective of the night’s scoring chances. By the end of the game, the Red had outshot Harvard, 35 shots to 17. Furthermore, Harvard had blocked 23 of the Red’s shots.

“We were prepared to play — I thought we worked hard throughout the course of the game, we battled,” Schafer said. “As a coach you just go back and evaluate where we are after we come out of that game. It’s obviously disappointing to lose but you have to go back and look at the factors that lead to maybe not capitalizing on scoring chances, chances we gave up. We have to address those issues.”

Original Author: Dani Abada