Men's Hockey Battles No. 1 Quinnipiac, Princeton In Final Home Weekend
Alex Fallstrom is riding a six-game point streak heading into the Quinnipiac game (Gil Talbot).
Complete Game Notes (pdf)
Harvard vs. Quinnipiac Series History
Friday's game will be just the 19th meeting between the two teams, with Harvard holding a slight 8-7-3 edge in the all-time series. The Bobcats kicked off the series with a 5-2 win at the Hartford Civic Center, Nov. 4, 2005, but Harvard was unbeaten in the next five matchups, posting a 3-0-2 mark. There has only been one shutout in the previous 17 meetings, an 11-0 pounding by Harvard in the first of a three-game ECAC Hockey Tournament series March 14, 2008.
Jan. 5, 2013 at TD Bank Sports Center
Two early goals from Quinnipiac made it look like the game may get away from the Crimson, but Luke Greiner netted his second goal of the season to cut the Bobcats' lead to 2-1 after the first period. Three straight goals from the hosts in the second put the game out of reach, as a power-play tally by Alex Fallstrom wasn't enough to prevent the 6-2 final in favor of Quinnipiac.
Scouting The Bobcats
The seniors on the team have led the Bobcats to the No. 1 ranking in both national polls. Quinnipiac enters the weekend with an impressive 23-4-5 record and 16-1-3 conference mark, having locked up a first round bye in the ECAC Tournament long ago. There have been very few blemishes on the Bobcats' schedule this season and a 21-game unbeaten streak from Nov. 9-Feb. 9 helped propel the squad to the No. 1 ranking in the land.
Senior forward Jeremy Langlois is the team's leading scorer with 11-16-27 points in 31 games. Sophomore Matthew Peca is next with 10-10-20 points, and senior Jordan Samuels-Thomas shares the team goals lead with Langlois at 11. The Bobcats boast 13 players who have double-digit point totals on the season, including senior defensemen Mike Dalhuisen and Loren Barron, who lead all defenders with 13 points each.
Another four-year player, Eric Hartzell, has been the go-to choice in net this season, playing nearly 95% of the minutes for Quinnipiac. He boasts a .935 save percentage and miniscule 1.49 goals against average which ranks second in the nation. His four shutouts also rank second in the country, and he backstops the nation's best penalty kill (91.4%).
Harvard vs. Princeton Series History
In Harvard's second-most contested series, the Crimson holds a commanding 147-57-11 edge in 215 career meetings. The first game of the series was played in 1902 in New York City, where Harvard skated to a 6-3 victory.
Recently, the matchups have been closely contested with eight of the past 10 meetings being either one-goal games or ties. Harvard is 4-4-2 against the Tigers in that stretch.
Jan. 4, 2013 at Baker Rink
Facing a 2-0 deficit against the Tigers, senior Marshall Everson stepped up to get the Crimson on the board, closing the gap to one after two periods. A power-play goal from Colin Blackwell with 7:10 to play knotted the score at 2-2 but Andrew Calof's third goal of the game 58 seconds into overtime gave the Tigers a dramatic victory.
Scouting The Tigers
Entering the final weekend of regular-season play, Princeton, like many teams in the ECAC, is very much alive in the hunt for home ice in the first round of the tournament. The Tigers helped their cause by picking up five league victories in the span of a month, culminating in a weekend sweep of Colgate and Cornell Feb. 8-9. However, the last four games have seen the Tigers come out on the losing end, with three of the four losses being of the one-goal variety.
Junior Andrew Calof ranks ninth in the country, third in the ECAC and first in the Ivy League in scoring, boasting a 1.30 points-per-game average and 12-23-35 points on the season. Senior defenseman Michael Sdao is fourth on the team, and tied for first among defensemen, in scoring with 7-6-13 points, and leads all Princeton players with four power-play tallies this season.
Senior Mike Condon has taken the reins in net for Princeton, starting 18 games and holding a .922 save percentage and 2.54 goals-against average. Junior Sean Bonar has started nine games for Princeton this year.
Last Time Out
Riding a four-game unbeaten streak, its longest of the season, the Crimson traveled to the North Country to take on St. Lawrence and Clarkson.
Harvard started fast against the Saints, taking a 1-0 edge just 5:39 into the game on a Marshall Everson power-play goal. Kyle Flanagan evened the game at 11:20 of the first and the score stayed knotted through the second period. Jimmy Vesey regained the lead for the guests with a goal at 1:15 of the third, but a pair of St. Lawrence goals came 12 seconds apart, serving to sink the Crimson en route to a 4-2 final.
While Clarkson drew first blood Saturday night, the Crimson had the last laugh. Down 1-0 5:24 into the first, Kyle Criscuolo struck twice just 1:09 apart and classmate Greg Gozzo collected his first career goal to give Harvard a 3-1 lead after one. Clarkson closed the gap to 3-2 on a Simon Bessette goal in the second, but three third-period tallies allowed the Crimson to pull away. Gozzo got his second of the game and Conor Morrison and Brayden Jaw also scored to seal the 6-2 win.
While Harvard is locked into either the 11th or 12th seed in the ECAC Tournament, Harvard's first round opponent is still far from decided. There are nine possible first round opponents for Harvard, excluding Quinnipiac, which has locked up the No. 1 seed, and Colgate, which can finish no higher than seventh.
Firsts For The Freshmen
Rookies Brayden Jaw and Greg Gozzo picked up the first goals of their collegiate careers in the 6-2 win over Clarkson. Gozzo had a pair of scores in the game, including the game-winning tally, and Jaw's goal also represented his first collegiate point. Their goals mean every position player from the class of 2016 has recorded a goal this season.
All About Alex
With an assist in the games against St. Lawrence and Clarkson last weekend, senior Alex Fallstrom extended his point streak to six games. The stretch represents a career-high for Fallstrom, and is the longest point streak on the team this season.
They Come In Pairs
For the second time this season, Harvard has produced two, two-goal scorers in a single game. Rookies Greg Gozzo and Kyle Criscuolo each tallied a pair of scores in the 6-2 win over Clarkson. Marshall Everson teamed with Luke Greiner against BU to give Harvard two, two-goal scorers in a single game for the first time this season.
Facing No. 1
The Bobcats come into Bright Hockey Center as the No. 1 team in the nation in both polls. Harvard last faced the nation's top team Feb. 6, 2012 when it dropped a 3-1 decision to No. 1 Boston University in a Beanpot semifinal. Harvard's last win over a top-ranked team came Nov. 17, 2004 when it knocked off local rival Boston College, 3-1, at home.
Must Be McGregor
Harvard is 3-0-0 when sophomore Ryan McGregor scores a point. He logged an assist in a 4-0 shutout of Rensselaer Nov. 10, and collected a pair of helpers in Harvard's 6-5 comeback win over Boston University Jan. 9. He picked up his fourth assist of the season in the 6-2 victory at Clarkson.
Harvard is 7-0-0 in games where it scores at least four goals this season and 8-1-0 in games where it scores at least three goals. Four was the magic number for the Crimson last season, as Harvard was unbeaten (9-0-2) when scoring four or more goals in a game.
Five members of the class of 2013 have eclipsed the 100-games played mark in their careers. Danny Biega leads the way with 127, followed by Luke Greiner with 118 and Marshall Everson with 114. Alex Fallstrom has played in 108 games in his collegiate career and Conor Morrison is the most recent member of the group, playing in his 100th game in the 6-2 win over Clarkson.
The last time Harvard had five seniors eclipse the 100-game mark was during the 2007-08 season, led by Jon Pelle '08 with 135 for his career.
Marshall Everson became the first Harvard player to earn ECAC Hockey Player of the Week honors for the 2012-13 season. The week of Feb. 10-16 saw the senior tally six goals in four games, including back-to-back two-goal games against Boston University and Colgate. He put together a five-game goal streak from Feb. 9-22 that represented the longest of his career and the longest of any Harvard player this season.
Senior Danny Biega, the 120th captain of the Harvard men's hockey team, was named a finalist for the 2013 Senior CLASS Award. He is Harvard hockey's second-ever candidate for the award, and first since Brian McCafferty '09 was a candidate in 2009. Biega is one of 10 finalists and the award winner will be selected during the NCAA Frozen Four April 11-13 in Pittsburgh, Pa. He is the only Senior CLASS Award finalist from ECAC Hockey.
Biega is coming off his most prolific year in Cambridge. In 2011-12, Biega received CCM Hockey first team All-America honors, was a runner-up for ECAC Hockey Player of the Year and was the named the league's Best Defensive Defenseman. He was named to the ECAC Hockey Championship All-Tournament team and All-Ivy League first team and ranked second in the nation in points per game among defensemen (1.03).
Freshman Kyle Criscuolo missed 10 games due to an injury, but has logged five assists and two goals in eight games since his return. Four of those five assists have been primary helpers on goals scored by Marshall Everson.
Brian Hart and Colin Blackwell have been busy handing out helpers recently. Hart has six assists in his last five games, and Blackwell has four in the last five contests. Hart has had four, two-assist games in his rookie campaign, with three of those games occurring in his last five contests.