Bruno finishes season in last place, to face Quinnipiac in playoffs

Brown falls to Princeton, Quinnipiac by large margins to close out ECAC regular season

Senior Staff Writer
Sunday, February 26, 2017

The men’s hockey team closed out its regular season with a pair of losses, falling to Princeton Friday and Quinnipiac Saturday by tallies of 7-2 and 4-1, respectively.

Friday night, Bruno (4-23-2, 3-18-1 ECAC) was unable to recover from an early deficit against the Tigers (13-13-3, 8-11-3). Princeton shut the Bears out in the first two stanzas, notching six consecutive goals before Tyler Bird ’18 and Sam Lafferty ’18 put Brown on the board with a goal apiece in the third period.

“I don’t think we came ready to play, and the result was kind of what we gave,” said Charlie Corcoran ’18. “It definitely was a wake-up call.”

Ryan Kuffner opened scoring for Princeton at 4:45 in the first, sending a shot past goaltender Gavin Nieto ’20 on a partial breakaway. Nine minutes later, Max Véronneau got on the board with a one-timer in front to extend the Tigers’ lead to two entering the second period.

Josh Teves and Ben Foster each found the back of the net in the second stanza before Brown replaced Nieto with veteran Tim Ernst ’17 at the midpoint of the period. Eric Robinson slotted a wraparound goal past Ernst at the 12-minute mark, giving the Tigers a 5-0 advantage at the end of the frame.

After David Hallisey scored on the power play 35 seconds into the final stanza, Bird posted the Bears’ first goal of the evening at 7:02, narrowing the deficit. Brent Beaudoin ’20 won the faceoff and sent the puck to Bird, who beat netminder Colton Phinney for the score.

Joey Fallon answered with a goal for Princeton before Lafferty scored off the rebound — his twelfth goal of the season — with eight minutes remaining. Corcoran  and Max Willman ’18 each picked up assists on the play.

Nieto made 15 saves before giving way to Ernst, who delivered a 21-save performance in the loss.

The following day, Bruno evened the score with Quinnipiac (19-13-2, 13-8-1) in the first stanza, but the Bears fell behind in the second period, conceding three unanswered goals in the away contest.

“We were two or three mistakes from being right in that game,” Corcoran said. “This late in the season, it is those little mistakes that teams will capitalize on.”

Nick Germain opened scoring for the Bobcats at 15:38 in the first with a backhanded shot, before Brown responded with the equalizer a minute and a half later. Corcoran collected a rebound and sent the puck past netminder Andrew Shortridge for his team-high 15th goal of the season. Willman recorded an assist on the play.

The Bobcats notched three unanswered goals in the second stanza to secure their lead before entering a scoreless third period. Bruno killed three penalties in the final frame, grounding Quinnipiac at 0-for-6 on the power play during the contest.

“Our penalty kill has been a lot better,” Corcoran said. “We’ve been getting up ice and pressuring teams pretty well, but there have been a couple of needless penalties.”

The Bobcats outshot the Bears 37-19. Nieto made 33 saves in the loss.

The Bears will pay another visit to fifth-seeded Quinnipiac next weekend for the best-of-three first round of the ECAC playoffs, starting Friday night.

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