Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Breaking Down the ECAC: Week 4- Turkey Edition

It's Thanksgiving week and the ECAC teams have a lot of non-conference games going on. But first, we'll take a look at last week- same format as usual.

1. Quinnipiac (10-1, 6-0) Last Week: 1st
Last weekend- Ok, I'll admit to some skepticism about Quinnipiac before this weekend. They were undefeated in ECAC play, sure, but they didn't really have a signature win yet. That changed last week and Quinnipiac proved that a name in net might not be needed in the 2009-10 ECAC season, as the Bobcats swept Colgate and Cornell on the road. On Friday night, they beat Colgate in a battle of previously unbeaten ECAC teams, 5-2, before skating into Lynah Rink on Saturday and grabbing a 3-0 lead on Cornell that eventually became a 3-2 final.
Key Player- Jeremy Langlois had two goals against Colgate for the Bobcats.
Up Next- Quinnipiac is involved in the only Wednesday game, hosting travel partner Princeton. They then take on Hockey East heavy UMASS at home on Saturday.

2. Union (5-3-3, 2-0-2) Last Week: 3rd
Last Weekend- The Dutchmen, the only other team besides the Bobcats undefeated in league play, get bumped up simply because of the Quinnipiac results. Union had no games at all last week.
Key Player- Hard to pick one when your team doesn't play a game. Sorry Union fans.
Up Next- Union is taking the not-too-long road trip down to Troy, NY for two games in the RPI Holiday Tournament. Union takes on Lake Superior State in the first round and then one of the teams in the Bentley/RPI game in the second round.

3. Cornell (5-2, 4-2) Last Week: 4th
Last Weekend- The Big Red started the weekend off strong by knocking around Ivy League rival Princeton 5-2. Then Cornell got off to a slow start against Quinnipiac on Saturday, falling behind 3-0, although the Big Red did cut into the lead to make the game 3-2.
Key Player- Brendon Nash had a goal and an assist in Cornell's win over Princeton.
Up Next- It is just a real rivalry week for the Big Red. On Tuesday night, the Big Red face their neighbors and travel partners the Colgate Raiders in a game that will likely see some toothpaste boxes loaded down with rocks make their way to the ice. Then Cornell travels to NYC on Saturday night, where they will face a former historic rival, the Boston U. Terriers, in front of a sold out Madison Square Garden crowd that will be evenly split, although no one will be able to tell because everyone will be wearing red and white.

4. Colgate (6-3-4, 4-1-1) Last Week: 2nd
Last Weekend- Colgate lost their first ECAC contest of the year, falling 5-3 to the Quinnipiac Bobcats. The Raiders then rebounded on Saturday night with a 5-4 OT victory over the Princeton Tigers. This was the eight contest decided by a goal or less for the Raiders this year, and their 5th OT contest. The Raiders are 4-0-4 in these eight contests.
Key Player- Francois Brisebois had two goals, including the game winner in OT, against Princeton.
Up Next- The Raiders travel down to face their biggest rivals and travel partner, the Cornell Big Red, on Tuesday. That is the only game of the week for Colgate.

5. Yale (3-2-2, 2-1-2) Last Week: 5th
Last Week- Yale lost in OT against non-conference foe Massachusetts 4-3 in OT before going to OT against travel partner and Ivy League rival Brown, getting a 6-5 win. Yale lead 4-1 and 5-2 but allowed the Bears to force OT.
Key Player- Broc Little had two goals this weekend, including the OT winner against Brown.
Up Next- Yale hosts fellow Connecticut school Sacred Heart in non-league play on Tuesday night before traveling to face another AHA school, Holy Cross, on Saturday afternoon. Next Monday, Yale faces Vermont, also a non-conference game.

6. RPI (7-5-1, 3-1-0) Last Week: 6th
Last Week- Only one game for the Engineers last week, but it was one the 'Tute would like to forget. Facing the previously winless Niagara Purple Eagles in a midweek game, RPI fell 4-1 to their non-conference foe.
Key Player- Paul Kerrins had the lone RPI goal this week.
Up Next- RPI hosts their annual holiday tournament with Bentley, Union, and Lake Superior State joining RPI in Troy. RPI will host Bentley in the first round before facing one of the two teams, Union and Lake Superior State, in the second round.

After the jump, teams 7-12, the 3 stars, and 3 games to watch.

7. Clarkson (4-8-1, 1-4-1) Last Week: 12th
Last Week- Clarkson entered the weekend without a win in ECAC play and without a win on the road, but that changed quickly as they knocked off Dartmouth 3-2 on Friday night before coming from behind to earn a 2-2 tie on the road against Harvard to earn three points for the weekend.
Key Player- Goaltender Paul Karpowich yielded only four goals on 80 shots last weekend to give the Golden Knights three points.
Up Next- Clarkson faces non-conference opponent Boston College on Friday night.

8. St. Lawrence (7-4-1, 3-3) Last Week: 7th
Last Weekend- St. Lawrence continues to be a streaky team, earning their third consecutive split weekend against ECAC foes. On Friday night, St. Lawrence held off the Harvard Crimson 3-2, but then on Saturday night, the Saints fell to previously winless Dartmouth 3-2.
Key Player- Travis Vermeulen had a couple of points, including two goals, this weekend for the Saints.
Up Next- St. Lawrence travels to Portland, ME to face non-conference opponent the Maine Black Bears on Sunday night.

9. Princeton (3-3-1, 2-3-1) Last Week: 8th
Last Week- The Tigers gave up 10 goals this past weekend as they saw their first road action of the season, going up to face Cornell and Colgate in Ithaca and Hamilton, NY. Princeton fell at Lynah Rink 5-2 on Friday night, and then lost 5-4 on Saturday night in OT to Colgate.
Key Player- Dan Bartlett had two goals and an assist in the two losses this week for Princeton.
Up Next- Princeton visits travel partner Quinnipiac on Wednesday night.

10. Dartmouth (1-6, 1-6) Last Week: 11th
Last Weekend- Dartmouth was looking for their first win on Friday night as they faced fellow winless squad Clarkson, but they fell in the contest 3-2. The Big Green then did grab a win by defeating St. Lawrence 3-2 at home on Saturday night.
Key Player- Joe Gaudet scored two goals this weekend for the Big Green, one each night.
Up Next- Dartmouth faces Providence on Friday night before traveling to Cambridge for a non-conference game with travel partner and league foe Harvard on Sunday.

11. Harvard (1-4-2, 1-4-2) Last Week: 9th
Last Weekend- The Crimson's first home weekend after the second longest road trip to start the season in program history did not go quite as planned. The Crimson fell 3-2 on Friday night to St. Lawrence and then surrender a 2-0 lead in the third period to only earn a point against Clarkson in a 2-2 tie.
Key Player- Louis Leblanc netted a nice wraparound goal against Clarkson. Leblanc has a point in every game save one for the Crimson.
Up Next- Harvard faces the defending national champions, Beantown rival and Hockey East opponent Boston University on Tuesday night. Then the Crimson host Dartmouth on Sunday in a non-conference game.

12. Brown (0-6-1, 0-4-1) Last Week: 10th
Last Weekend- Brown was in the Mayor's Cup against Providence last Tuesday and they fell 4-3 against the non-conference Friars. Then they took on travel partner Yale and fell 6-5 in OT.
Key Player- Harry Zolnierczyk netted two goals, including the goal that sent the game to OT, against Yale.
Up Next- Brown hosts Bentley on Tuesday night and then hosts UCONN next Saturday night.

3 Stars of the Week
1. Paul Karpowich, Clarkson
2. Broc Little, Yale
3. Jeremy Langlois, Quinnipiac

3 Games to Watch
1. Colgate @ Cornell- This is one of the more fun rivalries in the ECAC in terms of fan behavior, but considering both teams are a point apart near the top of the standings, it is sure to be even more fun. You know it has to be a good rivalry when one of the schools used to have a nickname that most people thought referred to their athletic rivalry with the other, and this one won't disappoint on Tuesday at Lynah Rink.
2. Massachusetts @ Quinnipiac- Our non-conference game of the week. UMASS is two points out of first in Hockey East with two games in hand. Quinnipiac has won six straight dating back to their lone loss on Halloween, an out of conference game against Robert Morris, and the Bobcats are the top of the ECAC. Sign us up for this Saturday clash of titans.
3. Cornell vs. Boston U.- The goal of this feature was to pick only one non-conference games a week. Kind of tough to do that when there's only two conference games on the schedule, and Princeton-Quinnipiac wasn't all that compelling. So we're going with an extra non-conference game of the week. Admittedly, we were tempted to go Harvard-BU here as the crosstown rivals, but neither teams' record is making that look like the most marquee match-up. What's more, how could we pass up throwing Cornell-BU, Red Hot Hockey at Madison Square Garden, on this list? Having been at the last one two years ago, a BU blowout, this is one of those games where the on ice action doesn't even matter as much considering there will be a sold out MSG filled with red and white clad supporters of both teams, two of the more notorious (in a good way) fan bases in college hockey. So the fact that Cornell is streaking and BU well, isn't, means this Saturday night game gets the nod over the potential Beanpot final round preview in Cambridge. Having been at the Cornell-BU game at MSG is the reason I love college hockey (and yes, the potential irony is not lost on me at all.)


  1. The crowd at MSG for Cornell-BU won't be evenly split. It was about 70% Cornell fans last time, and I expect the same this year.

  2. Scott, couldn't tell, they were all wearing red and white.

    But I'm pretty sure each team had half the Garden to sell last time around and I remember it being a large split- esp. since BU was the home team. And I figure BU fans in NYC would love getting to see the defending national champs.