The men’s hockey team (4-14, 4-8 Eastern College Athletic Conference) lost a tight matchup against the Long Island University Sharks (7-14-3) at home Sunday evening in their final non-conference game of the season. After Brown fought its way back from a two goal deficit, Long Island University scored with 11.1 seconds remaining to win the game 4-3.
Jordan Tonelli ’24 tied the game 3-3 midway through the final period, scoring his first career goal. But LIU’s Billy Jerry scored his fourth goal of the game just before the clock expired, leaving the Bears insufficient time to recover.
LIU took an early lead, with Jerry scoring on the power play at the 13:59 mark of the opening period. The Bears did not answer this goal until deep into the middle period, when Michael Maloney ’22 scored his fifth goal of the season, tying the game 1-1. Luke Krys ’23 passed to Maloney at the bottom of the left circle, and Maloney’s shot attempt deflected off an LIU defenseman, past the goaltender and into the net.
LIU regained its lead five minutes into the second period when Jerry scored his second goal of the day on a 2-on-1 LIU rush.
Just over a minute later, Jerry scored his penultimate goal of the day, earning himself a hat trick and giving the Sharks a 3-1 lead, their largest of the game.
Nathan Plessis ’23 reduced the Bears’ deficit to one goal after he scored six minutes into the second period, only 23 seconds after Jerry’s third goal. Plessis’ goal, his third of the season, was scored off a centering pass from behind the net by Justin Jallen ’22.
Tonelli’s game-tying goal at the 10:54 mark was assisted by Lynden Grandberg ’25 and Matt Sutton ’24.
“It felt good to get one under the belt, but (we) obviously would have liked to get a win,” Tonelli said of scoring his first career goal in such a clutch moment. “A win is more important.”
“Jordan is a player that plays a brand of hockey that allows him to play critical minutes. He's ferocious on the puck, and it was great to see him rewarded with his first collegiate goal,” Head Coach Brendan Whittet ’94 wrote in an email to The Herald.
Brown’s goaltender Luke Kania GS had 19 saves, but Jerry’s hot hand proved to be too great a challenge for the Bears.
The Bears went 1-3 (1-1 ECAC) over winter break and are looking to improve their record as they move forward with only games in-conference for the remainder of the season.
“I think we’re taking strides trying to figure ourselves out as a team and sticking to the game plan,” Maloney said.
Whittet elaborated on what exactly that game plan entails. “We always want to consistently play fast, disciplined, structured, tenacious and assertive hockey. That consistency from shift to shift and game to game is an area that we need to address, as when we get away from that mindset we struggle,” he wrote.
“We have half our ECAC season coming up this month. Our goal is to strive to move as high as we can in the standings,” Whittet wrote. “We are a team that is very young with over half our players … new to college hockey, so it's to be expected that you will have highs and lows during the season-long journey. The key is growth and playing the right way down the stretch, thereby allowing us the best possible opportunity to be successful.”
The Bears face a quick turnaround as they take on a conference matchup against Cornell on Tuesday.
“Cornell is one of the best teams in the country,” Whittet wrote. “I know that to beat Cornell you have to be willing to battle in the corners, along the wall and in front of the net. If you can do that and win those areas, you have a good chance to win the game.”
Bruno lost to Cornell 3-2 in overtime in November, but Whittet wrote that the Bears “played a great game.”
Tonelli summarized the team’s mindset. “It’s on how we play,” he said. “We’re good enough to beat any team. We just can’t beat ourselves.”