BOSTON—Looking to once again propel itself into the final two weekends of the regular season with a Beanpot consolation win, the Harvard men's hockey team takes on Northeastern Monday at 4:30 p.m. at TD Garden, home of the Boston Bruins.
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• The Crimson (7-7-10) is unbeaten (3-0-4) in its last seven ECAC Hockey games but suffered a 3-1 loss to top‑ranked Boston University in last week's 60th Beanpot semifinals. The Huskies (11-13-3) fell to Boston College, 7-1. Last season, a 5-4 win against BU in the Beanpot consolation game was the first of eight Harvard wins in nine games, extending through the regular season and into the ECAC quarterfinals.
• Coming off a 2-2 tie against Rensselaer Friday, Harvard stands fourth in ECAC Hockey with four games remaining. The top four finishers earn a first-round by in the league tournament.
• Harvard has trailed during play in 21 games, but has rallied to win or tie 15 of those contests (5-6-10).
• The Crimson leads the NCAA in power-play efficiency at 29.9 percent (29 for 97). Harvard has scored at least one power-play goal in 20 of its 24 games and netted multiple power-play goals in eight games.
• Alex Killorn (Montreal, Que.) leads Harvard with 30 points and 15 goals. He ranks 13th nationally with 1.25 points per game and 10th with 0.62 goals per game. Linemate Marshall Everson (Edina, Minn.) has 24 points (9-15-24), including four goals and 10 assists in the last nine games.
• Harvard boasts two of the nation's highest-scoring defensemen. Danny Biega (Montreal, Que.) ranks third nationally among defensemen at 1.08 points per game (7-19-26). Patrick McNally (Glen Head, N.Y.) is tied for 13th among among defensemen and second among freshmen on the blue line with 0.79 points per game (4‑15‑19).
Last Time Out
Harvard tied Rensselaer, 2-2, Friday night at Bright Hockey Center, matching the NCAA record with its 10th tie of the season and setting a new ECAC mark with its eighth league tie. Brock Higgs scored an extra-attacker goal with 63 seconds left in regulation to rally Rensselaer after Luke Greiner (Faribault, Minn.) gave the Crimson a third-period lead.
Alex Fallstrom (Stockholm, Sweden) also scored for Harvard, erasing RPI's 1-0 lead in the first period. Raphael Girard (Saint-Hyacinthe, Que.) made 27 saves, while Rensselaer's Bryce Merriam logged 29, as the Crimson owned a 31‑29 shots advantage. CJ Lee notched a goal and an assist for the Engineers. In between Beanpot games, Harvard is nowv 5-2-2 under Ted Donato '91 and 8-2-2 in the last 11 years.
The Crimson came into last season's Beanpot consolation game off a league tie (4-4 at home against Princeton). Harvard rallied to a 5-4 win against Boston University and went on two win three of its final four league games and sweep a first-round playoff series at Clarkson and win the first game of its ECAC quarterfinal set at Dartmouth.
On a Roll
Harvard's seven-game league unbeaten streak is its longest since the Frozen Four season of 1993-94, when the Crimson doubled that number with an 11-0-3 record over its final 14 ECAC games.
Harvard is 22-3-2 in February home games under Ted Donato '91. The Crimson is 22-9-5 in post‑Beanpot ECAC games and 45-23-15 in all post-exam league games in Donato's seven‑plus seasons. (Harvard's first-semester exams took place in January until being moved to December in 2009.)
The Crimson has taken at least one point from 14 of its 18 ECAC Hockey games. With a 3-1-5 record in league road games, Harvard has taken points from eight of nine away contests.
The attendance of 16,005 for the Beanpot semifinals was a season-high for Harvard. The Crimson skated before five-digit crowds in both of its games at North Dakota (11,500 Dec. 30 and 10,980 Dec. 31) and an ECAC regular-season-record 8,891 fans in its Frozen Fenway game against Union (Jan. 13). Three Harvard home games and two road games have been sold out.
The Crimson holds a 29-15 advantage against its opponents in third-period goals, including 11-2 over the last seven games. Harvard is 5-1‑3 when entering the third period leading or tied.
Harvard has entered the final period trailing in 15 games but has rallied to win or tie in nine of those, including two of its last four league games.
Harvard has trailed 31 times during play this season and has come back to tie 25 times. The Crimson trailed twice each in its win against No. 18 Colgate (Nov. 12) and its ties against No. 19 Quinnipiac (Nov. 5), Dartmouth (Nov. 25), No. 18 North Dakota (Dec. 30), No. 14 Union (Jan. 6) and No. 9 Cornell (Jan. 21). Harvard scored seven goals over the final two periods to rally from a four‑goal deficit and defeat New Hampshire, 7-6 (Nov. 22), and erased four separate one‑goal deficits in a 4-4 tie at Massachusetts (Dec. 2). Harvard is 2-6-7 when trailing after two.
The Drawing Board
Friday's tie was Harvard's eighth in ECAC play, eclipsing the previous league record held by the 1991-92 Yale (11‑4‑7), 2003‑04 Dartmouth (10‑5-7) and 2010-11 Quinnipiac (6‑9-7) squads. Harvard has tied 10 games overall, breaking the previous program record of six set in 1991-92 and matched in 2008‑09. The draw matched the NCAA record first set by Minnesota State in 2002‑03. Colorado College matched that mark in 2008‑09, as did Western Michigan last season.
Time and a Half?
Eleven of Harvard's 24 games reached overtime, including 10 of the last 17. The Crimson has played 50 minutes, eight seconds of overtime.
Harvard has held seven of its last nine league opponents to two goals or fewer and and each of its last 12 foes overall to three goals or fewer.
The Crimson is unbeaten when scoring four goals or more (5-0-2) and has lost just twice when allowing three goals or fewer (6-2-8).
Outside the Box
Harvard averages the fifth-fewest penalty minutes per game in the nation at 10.9.
Harvard has won its season series against Colgate and Quinnipiac; tied its series against Dartmouth, Princeton and Rensselaer and lost its series against Cornell and Union. The Crimson leads Brown, Clarkson and Yale and trails St. Lawrence.
Survey Says ...
The Crimson has received votes in 13 of the 17 weeks of the USCHO.com national poll, including four points last week.
Harvard and NU are tied for 29th in the PairWise Ranking. Harvard is 3-5-6 against its fellow teams under consideration for the NCAA tournament (Ratings Percentage Index of .500 or better).
Harvard played seven ranked opponents in a stretch of eight games in December and January. The Crimson was 0-3‑4 against those seven ranked opponents and is 1-3-5 against ranked foes this season. Dating back to last season, Harvard is 3-5‑6 against its last 14 ranked opponents.
The Crimson has allowed its opponents only 87 power plays this season, the nation's lowest total and an average of just 3.63 per game. The only other team to allow its opponents fewer than 100 power plays is New Hampshire (89).
Dating back to 2010-11, Harvard has netted 32 power-play goals in its last 24 ECAC games. The Crimson has had three man-advantage goals in three of those games and two in nine others. The Jan. 13 shutout loss to Union ended a Harvard streak of 18 games with a power-play goal.
The last team to score on at least 30 percent of its power plays in a full season was Colorado College in 2002‑03 at 30.8. The last team to break 35 percent was the 1986-87 Harvard squad at 35.9. The NCAA record for power-play efficiency is 40.2 percent, recorded by Boston University in 1970-71.
59th Beanpot Revisited
Notes from Harvard's appearance in last season's Beanpot tournament, Feb. 7 and 14, 2011:
• Behind three second-period goals and 41 saves from Chris Rawlings, Northeastern skated to a 4-0 victory against Harvard in the semifinals. The Crimson registered a season high in shots, including 17 in the first period. Pier‑Olivier Michaud '11 led Harvard with seven shots on goal, while Rence Coassin (Hamden, Conn.) logged six.
• Danny Biega and Michael Del Mauro '11 scored in the final four minutes, three seconds of the third period to lift Harvard to a 5-4, comeback win against No. 15 Boston University in the consolation game. Harvard scored three goals—two off the stick of Alex Killorn—in 73 seconds to rally from a goal down in the second period. BU tied the score with two quick goals later in the period before taking a 4-3 lead in the third. Biega and Alex Fallstrom assisted on both Killorn goals, while Peter Starrett (Bellingham, Mass.) helped out on the final two scores. Ryan Carroll '11 made 45 saves and Ryan Grimshaw (Rochester, N.Y.) also scored. Alex Chiasson scored twice and Kieran Millan made 24 saves for BU.
• Boston College, which defeated BU, 3-2, in the semis, pulled out a 7-6, overtime win in the final.
Harvard has won 10 Beanpot titles, most recently in 1993. Other Crimson Beanpot notes:
• Ted Donato owns a 3-12 Beanpot record as Harvard head coach, and his teams have a 5-8‑1 record against Boston teams in non-Beanpot action. The Crimson fell to BU, 4-3, in overtime Jan. 14.
• Alex Killorn leads active Harvard players with four goals in six Beanpot games. Danny Biega also has three points, on a goal and two assists, in four games.
• The Crimson had lost to the eventual national champion in three straight Beanpots before last year, BC in 2008 and 2010 and BU in 2009.
• Since the first Beanpot in 1952, Boston schools have won nine national championships. Each time, the title-winning team, including Harvard in 1989, won the Beanpot earlier in the season.
• Harvard made its first appearance since 1998 in the Beanpot championship game in 2008, losing a thriller to BC, 6-5, in overtime. The Crimson trailed, 5-3, until Jon Pelle '08 and Mike Taylor '08 scored in the final nine minutes of the third period to send the game to an extra session. Taylor had two goals and an assist in the game. Doug Rogers '10 recorded a goal and two assists. Alex Biega '10 had two assists. Kyle Richter '10-11 made 27 saves. Nick Petrecki scored the winning goal for the Eagles at 7:07 of overtime. Petrecki had two goals, as did Brian Gibbons.
• The Crimson has met Northeastern in 12 of the last 13 tournaments. Harvard, which will not face BC for the second straight tournament, had played the Eagles in each of the last four Beanpots before last year.
• The Crimson narrowly missed trips to the Beanpot championship game in four of Ted Donato's first five years behind the bench. Harvard suffered a 2-1, double-overtime loss to Northeastern in the 2005 semifinal. BU held off a late Crimson charge (Harvard scored twice and held a 25-6 advantage in shots in the final period.) and added an empty-net goal for a 5-3 win in the 2006 semifinals. BC scored twice to rally and added an empty-netter in a 3-1 win against the Crimson in the 2007 first round. In 2009, Alex Biega's would-be tying goal against No. 1 BU crossed the goal line a moment after the final buzzer, sending Harvard to a 4-3 semifinal loss.
• The rivalries with BU, BC and Northeastern are Harvard's most-contested among non-conference opponents. Many of those games took place when all the schools were part of the 17-team ECAC. Harvard has met Boston University 145 times, Boston College 118 and Northeastern 97.
• The Crimson's nine-year championship appearance drought that ended in 2008 was the longest in school history. The current 18-year title drought is Harvard's longest.
• Ted Donato was 3-5 in Beanpot games as an undergrad, helping the team to the 1989 title.
• There are six Massachusetts natives, including three freshmen and two seniors, and nine total New England natives on the Crimson roster.
• Four current Crimson players have brothers who played in the Beanpot. Aaron Moore, brother of Colin Moore (Medfield, Mass.), played for Northeastern, while Danny Biega and Connor Riley (Lake Forest, Ill.) have brothers who played for Harvard. The first Beanpot for Max Everson (Edina, Minn.) is brother Marshall's third.
• 1955 Beanpot MVP Bill Cleary '56 was inducted into the Beanpot Hall of Fame in 1995. He holds Beanpot records for goals in a period (four), game (five[tie]) and tournament (seven); and points in a period (five), game (seven) and tournament (11). He went on to coach Harvard to four Beanpot titles.
• Joe Cavanagh '71 holds the record for career Beanpot points with 19 (7-12-19) and was a member of the first class inducted to the Beanpot Hall of Fame, alongside Bill Cleary, in 1995.
Danny Biega has a league-high 12 ECAC power‑play points (1‑11‑12), leading four Harvard players ranked tied for sixth or better. Alex Killorn is tied for seventh nationally with eight power-play goals.
Only two of Harvard's games have been decided by more than two goals. Seventeen of the 24 games, including 17 of the last 20, have been tied in the third period. At a point in every third period but two, the score has been tied or the teams have been separated by one goal. The Crimson is 4-3‑10 in one-goal games and ties.
In ECAC Hockey play, Danny Biega leads league defensemen in points (7-12-19). Patrick McNally (3-9-12) is tied for fifth among freshmen, first among rookie defensemen, in scoring. Harvard's power play is operating at a league-high 29.2 percent (21 for 72) in ECAC play.
Marshall Everson registered two points each in four straight games in January and has six points (1-5-6) in the last four games. He has scored or assisted on 15 of Harvard's last 25 goals.
Luke Greiner has scored three goals in the last four games and four in the last six. Linemate Eric Kroshus (Calgary, Alta.) has registered two goals and four assists in the last six contests. Kroshus stole the puck and passed to Greiner for a goal Friday.
Rock-Solid in Relief
Raphael Girard came off the bench and stopped every shot he faced in two straight games before starting Friday. He made 26 saves in two periods at Quinnipiac and eight stops after entering the Beanpot semifinal in the second stanza. He played 80 minutes, 26 seconds consecutively without allowing goal before Rensselaer's first goal Friday.
The Century Mark
Alex Killorn has 93 points on 45 goals and 48 assists in 120 career games for the highest point total by a Crimson player since Jon Pelle graduated with 97 points (39-58-97). Harvard, which plays only 29 games per regular season, has not had a 100-point scorer since Tom Cavanagh '05 registered 117 (48-69-117). Harvard's last 50‑goal scorer was Tim Pettit '04. The last 50-assist Harvard men were classmates Alex Biega '10 and Doug Rogers '10 with 55 each.
The Other Century Mark
Daniel Moriarty (Bienfait, Sask.) played his 100th game for Harvard Friday. Colin Moore reached that milestone Feb. 3 at Quinnipiac, while Alex Killorn and Ryan Grimshaw did so earlier this season. With 90 games played so far, junior Danny Biega could reach 100 in the ECAC tournament.
The Bright Stuff
Harvard is 65-38-7 (.623) at Bright Hockey Center under Ted Donato and 287-131‑32 (.673) all-time at Bright, which opened in 1979‑80.
The Crimson holds the all-time series lead against Northeastern at 64-33-0 and is 22-18 against the Huskies in the Beanpot. The teams first met Dec. 4, 1940, a 7-4 NU win. Harvard won seven of the next nine meetings and later posted series win streaks of 10 games (1959-63) and 16 games (1967-76). The teams met for one ECAC title while Northeastern was a member of the conference, with the Huskies prevailing, 5-2, in the 1982 league title game.
Scouting the Huskies
It has been a streaky season for Northeastern, which started slowly at 1-7-2 but then went on a 7-0-1 run that included road wins at highly ranked Michigan, Notre Dame (twice) and Minnesota. A four-game losing streak followed, and then the Huskies won three straight before losing their last two. Their last game as a 3-2 loss at New Hampshire Friday.
Northeastern sports a very balanced offense, with five players within six points of scoring leader Ludwig Karlsson (9-15-24). Karlsson, a freshman, is tied for the team goal-scoring lead with Cody Ferriero and Braden Pimm. He shares the assists lead with Vinny Saponari. Chris Rawlings has a .918 save percentage and 2.66 goals-against average in 26 starts.