Archive for the 'ECAC' Category

The Takeaway: NU and Dartmouth Tie in Shootout at the OK Corral

Monday, December 30th, 2013

Hanover, NH. - Northeastern and Dartmouth decided to play a shootout on Monday night, as the teams combined for a remarkable 16 goals on the evening. Dartmouth came out flying early in the first period against the Huskies, as it took an early lead when Jesse Beamish found a loose puck in front of Northeastern goaltender, Derick Roy and bat it five-hole scoring his first of the season. NU would respond just two minutes later when Mike Szmatula scored on the power-play to tie the game. Northeastern would follow that up with another when Colton Saucerman went in on a rush, sent the puck towards the net and it went in off a Dartmouth defender to give the Huskies its first lead. Dartmouth responded moments later, as Geoff Ferguson sent a backhander towards the net that went in off a Husky defender. Northeastern scored a late short-handed goal off the stick of John Stevens on a 2 on 0 rush. NU went into the first intermission leading 3-2.

The second period was much of the same as the first period, as it seemed defense was again optional. The Huskies scored the first in the period, as Josh Manson received a gift from a Dartmouth defender to beat Charles Grant, giving the Huskies the 4-2 lead.  But the wheels fell off, as Dartmouth scored the final four goals of the period in a span of six minutes. Charley Mosey and Eric Neiley scored even-strength goals, while Neiley and Hartley found the back of the net on the power-play. Dartmouth entered the third period leading 6-4.

Dartmouth scored the first two goals of the third period to take an 8-4 lead. Everyone thought the game was long over, but Northeastern came roaring back in the waning minutes of the third period. The Huskies scored two with an extra attacker, including the  game tying goal off the stick of Mike Szmatula which he scored off a rebound to tie the game at eight. The game went to overtime and neither team scored, as Northeastern and Dartmouth settled for an eight all tie. Northeastern’s record now sits at 10-6-3 and Dartmouth sits at a paltry 2-11-1 on their respective seasons. (more…)

ECAC Midseason Review and Awards

Thursday, December 26th, 2013

It was a great first half if you were an ECAC hockey fan. Quinnipiac looked so strong for so long to begin the season, Union came on late, Clarkson came out of nowhere to be a contender, Yale is still the defending National Champions, Dartmouth has fallen off everybody’s radar (Don’t forget them come playoffs), and St. Lawrence has had some impressive performances but also some serious head-scratchers. Those were some of the many storylines that come to mind for me, but as per usual the amount of storylines within the ECAC are exponential to the amount I could ever write in one article.

One of the big overlying storylines of the season is the emergence of so many young players on the scene. Matt Carey and Sam Anas both sit in the top ten of national scoring, while Michael Garteig has looked like a rock for Quinnipiac in net. Garteig isn’t exactly a newcomer but as a sophomore that saw limited action last season, his performance has been something that is kind of surprising.  On defense, names such as Connor Clifton for Quinnipiac and Gavin Bayreuther have come about in a big way. The former has been a defensive stalwart, while the latter has put up a ton of points with the Carey brothers on the Saint defense. (more…)

ECAC Power Rankings: Winter Break Edition

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

What a fall we had, as the number of surprises within the ECAC seemingly outnumbered the number of things that seem normal. The most interesting surprise of course has been Clarkson but in a sense the top three in these rankings weren’t expected to be at the top during any point of the season but here they are at the end of the first half. Quinnipiac has spent the better half of the first two months in the top spot, but that reign ends this week with a loss to Union. Although Union defeated the Bobcats, its weekend work to me was not as great as the team that will sit at the top to end the semester. Read this week’s Three Things I Think for more in-depth coverage of the conference this week. In a weird twist this week I am going to post last week”s ranking along with my preseason ranking of the team, as it always interesting to look back and see just how terrible I was at predicting the teams. (more…)

Three Things I Think: ECAC Week 9

Monday, December 9th, 2013

Last weekend was interesting to say the least, as two teams made huge statements, two teams took a step back and another ECAC goaltender was credited with a goal. Both Clarkson and Union swept over the weekend, as the Golden Knights picked up an impressive sweep over its longtime rival St. Lawrence while Union picked up a home win against the once seemingly unbeatable Quinnipiac Bobcats. Yale was the team that took the biggest step back over the weekend as it picked up a mesely point against both Harvard and Dartmouth, two teams that had combined for just two conference wins coming into the weekend. Quinnipiac has just one win in its last four contests with its lone victory against UMass, while Union holds the conference’s longest current winning streak at seven games.

The top of the standings are really close within the conference, as five points separate the top seven teams. Quinnipiac and Union are tied at the top,, after Union’s 6-4 win over the Bobcats on Saturday night. Clarkson sits within two points of the top and Colgate is three points back, after tying Cornell in Hamilton. With that said, here are my thoughts for the week. (more…)

ECAC Power Rankings: Week 8

Tuesday, December 3rd, 2013

Another weekend, and another weekend that was full of surprises. Last Week, Harvard defeated UNH in non-conference action but turned around and lost to Dartmouth just nights later. Quinnipiac will continue its reign as the top team in this poll, as it has been for over a month now, but the back of the poll has now become quite close.  Princeton is decimated, Harvard has been relatively inconsistent, Dartmouth just picked up its first win and Brown has just one win in its past eight games after beginning the season 2-0.

Union and Colgate are tied for second in the ECAC standings, while Cornell, Clarkson and Yale are all within are all within two points of that position. It’s still early to be looking at the standings, but trends and surprises are beginning to brew especially with Colgate and Clarkson sitting near the top. This weekend features big matchups in Schenectady and in the North Country, as Quinnipiac travels to Union (top two teams in the ECAC standings) and the battle of the North Country will feature two of the biggest surprises in the conference. I speak of the Battle of the North Country, Dartmouth’s first win and Princeton’s injuries in this week’s edition of Three Things I Think. (more…)

Three Things I Think: ECAC Week 8

Monday, December 2nd, 2013

Dartmouth finally got its first win of the season on Saturday night, as it downed Harvard in the only league game of the weekend. ECAC teams went 5-5-0 in non-league games, which was mediocre but the non-conference slate has to date been successful with a 36-21-5 record.  With the good non-league record comes good positioning in the Krach and Pairwise rankings where five league teams sit pretty heading into the break. The latter is most important in figuring out the NCAA tournament rankings, and the ECAC has five within the top 16.

This weekend features the last full conference game slate until next month as teams will head on holiday and exam breaks. There are a plethora of great games this weekend, as the Battle of the North Country will take center stage when Clarkson and St. Lawrence play a home and home series between two of the biggest surprises within the conference this so far. Also there is just a little matchup that features Quinnipiac and Union at Messa on Saturday. Those teams are currently first and in a tie for second within the conference so it should be quite the matchup in Schenectady. Without further ado there a bunch of story-lines and thoughts to be brought up. (more…)

The Takeaway: Dartmouth Gets 1st Win Defeating Harvard 2-1

Saturday, November 30th, 2013

Hanover, NH - Harvard and Dartmouth met for the 198th time in their illustrious histories on Saturday night in front of 3114 at Thompson Arena, and the early play did not disappoint. The teams played an uptempo scoreless first period that saw few chances for either team. The Crimson scored the game’s first goal at ten minutes, 13 seconds of the second period as Jimmy Vesey backhanded a shot high above Charles Grant to give the Crimson a 1-0 lead. The lead was shortlived, however, as the Big Green answered three minutes and 20 seconds later, when Grant Opperman found a loose puck and put it behind Raphael Girard. The game went to the third period tied at one apiece.

Dartmouth came out in the third period firing everything and anything at Harvard goaltender, Raphael Girard. It outshot the Crimson 10-7 in the period and dominated the play. The Big Green would score the only goal of the third period, as Brandon McNally sent a puck cross-crease to Eric Neiley who was wide open and the latter found the back of the net to give Dartmouth the lead with 2:41 remaining. The Big Green stifiled the Crimson for the remainder of the period and it held on to the 2-1 win over Ivy League rival Harvard. The win was Dartmouth’s first of the season and improved its record to 1-8-0, and 1-6-0 in the ECAC. The loss dropped Harvard to 4-6-1, and 2-5-1 in the ECAC. (more…)

The Takeaway: Harvard Impresses in 6-3 Road Win Over UNH

Tuesday, November 26th, 2013

Durham, NH - After a scoreless first period that saw UNH dominate territorially but not in quality chances, the teams exploded in an entertaining second period. Harvard got on the board first at three minutes, 36 seconds of the period when Luke Esposito sent a weak backhander towards UNH goalie, Jeff Wyer. The shot trickled through the five-hole and Harvard took the lead. Harvard added to that lead nearly six minutes later, as Kyle Criscuolo cut to the net and tipped it past Wyer on the fly. UNH would quickly tie it up with two quick goals of its own. The first one Dan Correale deked Harvard defender, Desmond Bergin, and beat Harvard goalie Rapheal Girard. Grayson Downing scored to tie the game at two a minute and a half later. But Harvard came back with a goal by Alexander Kerfoot with 1:20 remaining in the period to give the Crimson the 3-2 second intermission lead.

Harvard would go on to outscore UNH 3-1 in the final stanza, on goals by Kyle Criscuolo, Tommy O’Regan and Patrick McNally. Kyle Criscuolo finished with two goals and an assist, while Patrick McNally finished with a goal and two assists. Harvard cruised to the 6-3 win against UNH. With the win Harvard improved to 4-5-1 overall and with the loss UNH fell to 7-7-1 on the season. (more…)

ECAC Power Rankings Week 7

Tuesday, November 26th, 2013

What an interesting weekend around the conference as every team near the top of last week’s rankings took home a loss. Only Cornell took home two wins on the wacky weekend. RPI and St Lawrence had head-shaking losses to Atlantic teams on the weekend, which should have dropped them in the rankings but Harvard, Brown and Dartmouth have done nothing to prove to me they should move up. Make sure to read this week’s edition of Three Things I Think, which Turns out to be Three Things To be Thankful For this week, in celebration of Thanksgiving.

One of the biggest changes this weekend is that I have begun to take into account strength of schedule within the conference schedule as one of the biggest criteria. This week there were some honest changes that occurred because of it, mainly Yale moving down despite losing to a tough Cornell team; I will explain why when we get there. I am a couple off days early in my posts this week mainly because I will have two midweek games, Harvard at UNH on Tuesday and Providence at QU on Wednesday. (more…)

Three Things To Be Thankful For ECAC Edition

Sunday, November 24th, 2013

I figured that I would change the format a bit this week in celebration of Thanksgiving because there are a lot of things that ECAC fans should be thankful for this holiday season.  Let us not forget though, while we are eating Turkey with family or enjoying some football with loved ones, that some teams (St. Lawrence and Princeton in the ECAC) are a long away from home or campus. Also many of the players that we cover and watch on a daily basis won’t be spending it with their families because they love playing the sport we all love watching.

This weekend there were many surprises in the conference, as Princeton snapped Quinnipiac’s 13 game unbeaten streak while both Rensselaer and St. Lawrence had head shaking losses to Atlantic Hockey teams. Cornell was the only team to sweep the weekend, defeating both Brown and Yale. It will be poised for a move up the ECAC Power Rankings this week. With Yale and Quinnipiac dropping games on the weekend there are no longer any undefeated teams within ECAC conference play, so now comes the fun I suppose. What are you thankful for? Here is a list of what I think ECAC fans should be thankful for. (more…)