Sports

Men’s hockey split on ECAC opening weekend

By
Sports Editor
Sunday, November 6, 2011

The men’s hockey team was poised to come away with no points on its conference-opening weekend, falling 5-3 to No. 18 Colgate Friday and trailing Cornell in the third period Saturday. But a pair of goals in a 79-second span propelled Bruno (2-2, 1-1 ECAC) to a 5-4 win over the Big Red (1-2, 1-1). The goals, from first years Massimo Lamacchia ’15 and Ryan Jacobson ’15,  salvaged the weekend.

“I give the guys a lot of credit for coming in after the second period and regrouping, refocusing and saying, ‘You know what? We got a period to win this. It’s our rink in our house, and we need these two points,’ ” said Head Coach Brendan Whittet ’94.  

“In the future, hopefully we don’t have to let it get to that point, but I couldn’t be happier coming away with a split from this weekend, as much as we would have wanted four points,” said captain Jack Maclellan ’12, who had a goal and two assists on the weekend.

 

Colgate 5, Brown 3

The buzz in Meehan Auditorium from the home-opening puck drop was quickly quieted Friday when Colgate (5-3-1, 1-1) took an early 1-0 lead. The Bears were on the power play but were caught overcommitted and fell victim to a two-on-one break that resulted in a Colgate short-handed score.  

But Brown came out in the second period and made better use of its chances. Two penalties and a delayed penalty in just over a minute against Colgate gave the Bears a six-on-three advantage, and it took Maclellan only seven seconds to find the back of the net.  

A little over a minute later, now on a five-on-three advantage, Lamacchia was the beneficiary of a Matt Wahl ’14 assist and smacked home a one-timer to put Brown on top for the first time, 2-1.

But goals from Kevin McNamara and Jeremy Price gave Colgate a 3-2 lead by the end of the second period. Jeff Ryan ’13 got one back to tie the game six minutes into the third period, and the Bears looked poised to take the lead on the power play. But Bruno surrendered another short-handed goal to Smith. An empty netter put the icing on the 5-3 Colgate win.

“We’re screwing around with the puck and we’re just not making intelligent decisions,” Whittet said of the short-handed goals. “We’ll get better, but we’re just screwing around with it up high too much.”

 

Brown 5, Cornell 4  

The Bears came out the next night determined to not let more points slip away, jumping out to an early 2-0 lead over the Big Red. Goals from defenseman Richie Crowley ’13 and assistant captain Bobby Farnham ’12 provided the lead. But just three minutes after Farnham’s power play goal, Cornell’s Greg Miller redirected a shot past Mike Clemente ’12 from close range to cut the lead to 2-1 at the end of the first period.     

Cornell quickly tied the game up at the start of the second period. The Big Red dominated most of the period and took the lead when Brian Ferlin dispossessed Brown defenseman Dennis Robertson ’14 in the neutral zone and beat Clemente on the ensuing breakaway.  

After a dormant 15 minutes, the Bears jolted to life and tied the game 3-3 when Wahl lifted a skillfully-taken wrist shot over Cornell goalie Andy Iles’ glove to light the lamp. But Bruno had another lapse in play, leading to the third shorthanded goal surrendered in two games to give the Big Red the 4-3 lead.  

After Cornell successfully killed a pair of Brown power-play chances, Lamacchia took matters into his own hands. The five-foot-eight-inch first-year stole the puck around mid-ice, then beat Iles glove-side for the unassisted game-tying goal.  

“Lamacchia is a very skilled kid,” Whittet said. “He just has a knack for putting points on the board. He’s not the biggest guy. He’s a little bit of a guy and he’s not the fastest skater, but he understands the game. When he gets a chance to bury it, he buries it.”

Only 1:19 later, Jacobson —  playing on the first line with Maclellan and Farnham — found the game-winner.

“It was a crazy game,” Maclellan said. “Definitely an exciting win, and it was nice to see some of the young guys step up and win it for us.”

The Bears will return to the ice for more conference play next weekend as they travel to upstate New York to take on defending ECAC champion Union (5-1-3, 2-0) and a struggling RPI (1-8, 0-2), who bounced Bruno from last season’s ECAC tournament in the first round.