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M. hockey splits in New England trip

On Friday night, the men's hockey team started out the weekend with its first win at Dartmouth's Thompson Arena in eight years, but the Bears came up just short on Saturday as the offense sputtered in a 2-1 loss to Harvard. The split this weekend puts Brown at 5-18-4 overall, with a 5-12-3 record in the Eastern College Athletic Conference.

The Big Green grabbed an early lead with 6:40 left in the first period, but the Bears turned that deficit into a lead in the blink of an eye. With 6:10 remaining, Jordan Pietrus '10 took a pass from Matt Palmer '09 and lofted the puck into the net on a wraparound goal that tied the game. Just 48 seconds later, Bruno struck again, this time on a goal by assistant captain Jeff Prough '08, who was coming off his 100th career point last weekend. After receiving the puck from captain Sean Hurley '08, Prough skated around his defender and, from the bottom of the left face-off circle, fired a shot past the goaltender to give Brown a 2-1 lead.

"If you let Dartmouth get up by a goal or two, they're a completely different team, especially at home," Prough said. "We took the crowd out of it, and that gave us the confidence to get right back in the game."

In the middle of the second period, the Bears got themselves in trouble with a pair of penalties, to give the Big Green a five-on-three advantage for two minutes. Technically, the Bears were able to contain Dartmouth for the entirety of the two-man advantage, but a shot finally got past goalie Dan Rosen '10 to tie the game at two, just as the two players were returning to the ice.

"That was a little deflating, but our guys did what they had to do, they reared back and went after them again," said Head Coach Roger Grillo.

Less than two minutes later, though, Dartmouth got slapped with a five-minute penalty, and with 6:36 remaining in the period, Ryan Garbutt '09 beat the goaltender to give Brown the lead for good.

In addition to the goal, Garbutt had two assists on the night, assisting on Pietrus' goal and later on a goal by David Brownschidle '11.

With 5:10 to go in the second period, Chris Poli '08 added to Bruno's lead off a pass from Matt Vokes '09. Poli received the puck near the crease and fired a shot past the goaltender to make the score 4-2. But Dartmouth kept fighting, and answered back with a goal just more than a minute later, putting the score within one at 4-3 going into the final frame.

Brown killed three power-play opportunities for Dartmouth in the first half of the third period, and with 7:14 remaining in the game, Brownschidle knocked in a rebound off a shot by Garbutt to regain the two-goal cushion for the Bears.

Only 1:03 later, the Big Green capitalized on its ninth power play of the night to make it a 5-4 game, but Bruno held on for the win, to complete its first season sweep of Dartmouth since 1997-98.

Rosen finished with 38 saves to contain a Dartmouth attack that out-shot the Bears, 38-19.

On Saturday, the Bears again fell behind early, when a Harvard player knocked a rebound past Rosen to give the Crimson a 1-0 lead just 6:51 into the game. Late in the period, Bruno tied the game when Prough redirected a Hurley shot past the goaltender to make the score 1-1.

But from that point on, the Brown offense was unable to muster any kind of attack, as Harvard's trap defense, with three defenders back in the zone at all times, limited the Bears to just five shots in the second period and two shots in the third.

"We seemed to run out of gas," Grillo said. "We were in the same situation as the night before, in a tie game on the road, and we fell flat. We just didn't have the jump we needed."

A bright spot in Saturday's game was a brilliant performance by Rosen, who made 34 saves, including a blocked penalty shot late in the second period to keep the score knotted at 1-1.

But the Crimson grabbed the lead just 50 seconds into the third period, and the game ended with Harvard on top, 2-1.

Brown will host Rensselaer and Union this weekend, in the team's final regular season series in preparation for the ECAC playoffs.

"As long as you're playing your best hockey towards the end, that's all that matters," Prough said. "We're feeling pretty confident, no matter who we're playing, and that confidence was the biggest positive to come out of this weekend."


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