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M. hockey ends regular season with shutout

After a last-minute 2-1 loss to Rensselaer on Friday night, the men's hockey team finished its regular season on Saturday with a 2-0 win over Union, as goalie Dan Rosen '10 recorded his first collegiate shutout. The weekend marked the last home games for the team's five seniors: Paul Baier '08, Sean Hurley '08, Chris Poli '08, Jeff Prough '08 and David Robertson '08.

Though the Bears held a 24-12 advantage in shots over Rensselaer and had four power play opportunities, the game remained scoreless through the first two periods. In the first minute of the third period, Brown earned another power play, and this time the team did not squander its opportunity. Assistant captain Prough fired a shot on goal, which was deflected, but Ryan Garbutt '09 was there to get to the loose puck and knock it past the goalie to give Bruno a 1-0 lead with 19:02 remaining in the game.

The Engineers got off 12 shots in the final period, but the Bears were able to cling to their one-goal lead until just over two minutes remained in the game. With 2:04 remaining, Rensselaer's Peter Merth got the puck on the right side of the rink and sent a slap shot off Rosen's leg pad and into the net to tie the game. In the ensuing series of possessions, the Bears rushed the net, but after an errant shot, the Engineers countered with a rush of their own. Just 31 seconds after the first goal, Brown caught a bad break, when a Rensselaer shot from the slot deflected off the skate of Matt Palmer '09 and past Rosen to give the Engineers the deciding goal in their 2-1 victory.

"They had a two-on-one, and Palmer played it perfectly," Rosen said. "He got between them to block the pass ... but the puck hit his skate, and went to the right as I slid to my left, and by the time I dove back, the puck was already in the net."

In the opening period of Saturday's game against Union, none of Brown's 15 shots found the back of the net, but Rosen had seven saves of his own to keep the score tied. Rosen finished with 28 total saves in the shutout.

"For the most part, we limited their momentum, whereas on Friday night we got caught in our own zone for long periods of time," Rosen said. On Saturday night, "we played the game very smart and handled their pressure well. We were a lot sharper mentally on Saturday night."

In the fifth minute of the second period, the Bears found themselves with a 49-second two-man advantage, and 30 seconds later, Bruno had the lead. Prough found Hurley open at the bottom of the right faceoff circle, and Hurley beat the goaltender to put the Bears up 1-0. The Dutchmen also got a five-on-three opportunity later in the period, but Rosen stopped all four of their shots to maintain Brown's lead.

Rosen continued his brilliant performance in the third period, stopping all 11 Union shots, and with 5:03 left to play, Garbutt scored his second goal in two games to seal the win for the Bears.

Garbutt finished the regular season with a team-high nine goals, to go along with 11 assists, while Prough's six goals and 16 assists made him the team leader in assists and points.

With the split this weekend, Brown finishes the regular season at 6-19-4, with a 6-13-3 mark in the Eastern College Athletic Conference. After a disappointing beginning to the season, Brown finished respectably, with a 5-5 record in its last ten games, all against ECAC opponents.

The Bears, seeded 12th, will face off against sixth-seeded Quinnipiac in Hamden, Conn., starting on Friday in a best-of-three first-round series in the ECAC playoffs.

Brown struggled against Quinnipiac this season, losing 6-3 and 3-0 in their two match-ups, but the Bears will be able to focus solely on preparation for the Bobcats all week long in practice instead of preparing for two teams as they usually do each weekend.

"They're a very explosive offensive team, with a lot of talent and a solid goaltender. They can do some damage on the offensive end, and on the power play," said Head Coach Roger Grillo. "We're going to have (to) be especially good on our power play and our penalty kill, so we'll work on that in practice, and make sure the boys are ready come Friday night."



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