Princeton tops men’s hockey

By on December 6, 2006

POSTED 1/9/07 AT 11:52 P.M.

NORTH BRANFORD – Scoring goals was never a problem for the Quinnipiac men’s hockey team during the first semester. The Bobcats were the highest-scoring team in the ECACHL and used their firepower up front to help them move into first place in the conference.

Throughout the first three games of the second semester, however, Quinnipiac has scored just six goals, one of which was an empty-netter. The No. 19 Bobcats have lost two of those games, including a 4-2 setback tonight to the Princeton Tigers at the Northford Ice Pavilion.

The Bobcats (9-6-4, 6-3-3 ECACHL) were frustrated by Princeton goalie Zane Kalemba, who made 34 saves three days after he allowed just one goal in a 2-0 loss to Quinnipiac.

Despite scoring two or fewer goals in consecutive games for the first time since the opening weekend of the season at North Dakota, Bobcats captain Reid Cashman isn’t concerned about the offense.

“We’ve got enough skill and enough talent on this team offensively,” Cashman said. “We’re going through a little slump right now, we’re a little banged up, we’re not going to make excuses, but (the offense) will get going. That stuff is contagious. We just have to get a few ugly goals and that’ll pick up.”

After Saturday’s game at Princeton (8-8-2, 5-6-1 ECACHL), Quinnipiac head coach Rand Pecknold said he would’ve been satisfied regardless of the outcome because the effort was there. In tonight’s game, he said the Bobcats’ competitiveness was lacking.

“We didn’t have the extra little bit of jam to jump on loose pucks, to get sticks on pucks, to block shots,” Pecknold said. “There were just a lot of little things. We turned the puck over a lot in the neutral zone.”

It was a turnover in the neutral zone that led to the game-winning goal for the Tigers early in the third period. With Princeton leading by a goal, Mark Magnowski stole the puck on a turnover and fed Lee Jubinville on a 2-on-1 breakaway. Darroll Powe took a pass from Jubinville and beat Quinnipiac goalie Bud Fisher (32 saves) glove-side to give Princeton a 3-1 lead.

“Our team defense just wasn’t there,” Cashman said. “We gave them too many odd-man rushes and Bud really stood on his head for us, but we gave them too many opportunities and they capitalized.”

Trailing by two goals with 4:45 left, the Bobcats used their time-out and pulled Fisher for the extra attacker. Even with a 6-on-4 advantage for two minutes after Princeton was penalized high-sticking, Quinnipiac couldn’t score.

With 1:06 left, the Bobcats thought they had pulled to within a goal when Bryan Leitch fired a shot into the upper right corner of the net, but the goal was waved off after referee Scott Hansen ruled there was goaltender interference on the play.

Princeton scored into the empty-net 15 seconds later, while Mark Agnew knocked a rebound past Kalemba with 10 seconds left for Quinnipiac.

Both teams scored a first-period goal, with the Bobcats tying the score at 9:29 seven seconds before their power play was about to expire. David Marshall’s shot from the left circle trickled behind Kalemba and Chris Meyers tapped the puck in at the far post for his first goal of the season at 9:29.

In the second period, the Tigers scored the only goal and outshot the Bobcats, 19-11. The lone goal came with 6:38 left when Brett Wilson beat Fisher with a turn-around shot from the slot.

The Bobcats play their final game at Northford on Friday when they host Brown. Quinnipiac plays at Yale on Saturday.


The Bobcats have lost defenseman John Doherty and forward Dan Travis, both juniors who began their hockey careers at Quinnipiac this season after transferring from the University of New Hampshire.

Doherty has left Quinnipiac to play professional hockey. The Toronto Maple Leafs’ second round draft pick in 2003 has joined the organization’s ECHL affiliate, the Columbia Inferno. Doherty had played in all 16 Quinnipiac games during the first semester, registering five points (two goals, three assists).

Travis, the Bobcats’ fourth-leading scorer with four goals and 10 assists, is out for the season after suffering a knee injury Saturday at Princeton.

“Certainly, losing Travis hurts, and that’s going to hurt our power play,” Pecknold said. “But, I put Chris Meyers out their today in his spot, and he scores a goal right off the bat.”


About Doug Manners