The ECAC playoffs kicked off last night as three of the four home teams grabbed wins in Game 1.
Potsdam, NY- The tenth-seeded Harvard Crimson came out flat but a good performance from Ryan Carroll in net helped the Crimson grab the road win against the Clarkson Golden Knights. Harvard got on the board in the first period as Danny Biega partially fanned on a shot but it had just enough on it to make it on net and bounce through goaltender Paul Karpowich's five-hole. Clarkson, 0-15 entering last night when trailing after one, looked the better of the teams in the second but Adam Pawlick's redirection late in the second just missed the outside of the post and Harvard took a 1-0 lead into the third. The Golden Knights got a bounce of their own in the third as Alex Boak's shot from the point was deflected high by a Harvard stick and popped over Ryan Carroll's head to make it 1-1 just seven seconds after Clarkson's power play had elapsed. Five minutes later, Harvard answered with the eventual game winner as after some chaos in front, the puck found its way onto Michael Biega's stick and he fired one short side to make it a 2-1 win for the Cantabs. Shots were 33-18 in favor of Clarkson, with half of Harvard's shots coming in the third period. Clarkson went 0-2 on the power play while Harvard was 0-1. The Crimson take a 1-0 series lead into tonight's second game.
Hamden, CT- The eighth seeded Quinnipiac Bobcats rolled to an easy win over the ninth seeded Brown Bears last night to take a 1-0 series lead. The Bobcats grabbed the lead at the 15 second mark as Jeremy Langlois got on the board. That would prove to be the game winner as the Bobcats would go on to shut out the Bears. The Bobcats added another in the first and then two more in the second, with the last goal a sibling connection as Kellen Jones received the feed from his brother Connor to make it 4-0 Bobcats, the final score of the night. Shots were 27-22 in favor of Quinnipiac as Brown went 0-3 on the PP while Quinnipiac went 0-5.
Troy, NY- The fifth seeded RPI Engineers got off to a fast start over the twelfth seeded Colgate Raiders with three goals in the first but the visitors made it interesting after a strong third period. RPI took the lead at 1:15 mark of the first and then added two power play goals to take a 3-0 lead all the way into the third period. Colgate then scored two to start the third, with Austin Smith connecting first, then Jeremy Price adding a power play tally to make it 3-2. RPI scored 40 seconds after Price's tally as Brock Higgs put home his second of the night to make the final 4-2. Shots were 27-26 in favor of RPI. The Engineers went 2 for 7 on the man advantage while Colgate when 1 for 5 on the PP. RPI leads the best of three series 1-0.
Princeton, NJ- The sixth seeded Princeton Tigers grabbed a 1-0 series win over the eleventh seeded St. Lawrence Saints last night. Rookie Andrew Calof scored just 1:40 into the game to give Princeton the 1-0 lead. Princeton added two more within a minute of each other in the second period, including a power play goal from Michael Sdao that chased Robby Moss from the St. Lawrence net. St. Lawrence struck back with a power play tally of their own as Kyle Flanagan cut into the deficit to make it 3-1 Princeton. Rob Kleebaum added a fourth tally for the home squad in the third and the final was 4-1. Shots were 36-23 in favor of Princeton, with the Tigers going 1 for 3 on the PP and the Saints going 1 for 2. Princeton goes for the sweep this afternoon at 4pm.
Three Stars of the Nights
1. Brock Higgs, RPI- 2 goals
2. Ryan Carroll, Harvard- 32 saves
3. Andrew Calof, Princeton- 1 goal, 1 assist