Men’s ice hockey crushes Colgate, 4-1

By on January 13, 2017

No. 15 Quinnipiac men’s ice hockey entered Friday night just 3-6-1 in its last 10 games, and a matchup with Colgate provided the Bobcats a chance to regroup.

IMG_7090Erin Kane | The Quinnipiac Chronicle

Quinnipiac (13-9-2, 8-5-1 ECAC), which had won eight of its last 10 matchups against Colgate, walloped the Raiders, 4-1, at High Point Solutions Arena behind goals from each of its four lines.

“When we have four lines going, there is nobody that can touch us really,” Quinnipiac forward Landon Smith said. “That is our game plan, and if we can do it, then we’ll be successful.”

Quinnipiac opened the scoring with 7:13 left in the first period. Smith glided up the right side, looked off to his teammates in the center of the ice and fired it over Colgate goaltender Colton Point’s shoulder from the right faceoff circle. The goal was Smith’s sixth of the season and improved his team-leading point total to 18.

“The whole time I wanted to pass,” Smith said. “I was kind of waiting for the goalie to cheat and he did, so I threw it over his shoulder.”

IMG_7115Erin Kane | The Quinnipiac Chronicle

The Bobcats doubled their lead early in the second period. Point made a save on Rafferty’s initial shot, but Bo Pieper swooped in and cleaned up the rebound to put Quinnipiac up 2-0. The goal was Pieper’s eighth of the season as Rafferty earned his 15th assist.

Luke Shiplo was the next Bobcat to make his way onto the score sheet. Shiplo raced out of the penalty box following a tripping minor and right into a 4-on-2 chance for Quinnipiac at even strength. Point saved a shot from Karlis Cutske before Shiplo lifted the puck in on another rebound for his fourth of the season.

“We talk a lot about that, about getting pucks to the net, going to the net and creating those chances,” Quinnipiac head coach Rand Pecknold said.

IMG_7069Erin Kane | The Quinnipiac Chronicle

Jared Cockrell ended Quinnipiac goaltender Andrew Shortridge’s bid at a first career shutout with just over three minutes to play in the second period. Colgate was on a 4-on-3 advantage for the goal with Shiplo and Kevin McKernan in the Bobcats’ penalty box.

However, in the blink of an eye, Quinnipiac reclaimed its three-goal lead.

Tanner MacMaster batted a puck from midair just below the crossbar for his sixth goal of the season with 2:29 to go in the third period, just 35 seconds after Colgate’s tally to bring the game to its 4-1 total.

IMG_7142Erin Kane | The Quinnipiac Chronicle

At the other end, Shortridge finished with 24 saves to earn his fourth win of the season. The freshman netminder says he had a comfortable game from the opening puck drop.

“The guys did a great job of just pushing everything to the outside, giving me simple saves, one-and-done where I can control the rebound,” Shortridge said. “There wasn’t anything too challenging to start off at the beginning and it was good for me to settle in right away.”

The Bobcats return to the ice tomorrow night when they take on No. 19 Cornell (9-4-1, 4-2-1 ECAC) in Hamden. Quinnipiac won the first matchup between the two sides this season, 3-1, on Nov. 18. While the Bobcats have lost just two matchups to Cornell since the start of the 2013-2014 season, Pecknold says the Big Red always presents a big matchup.

“[Cornell] poses a lot of problems for us,” Pecknold said. “They’re big and strong, they have a great goaltender and that first line is really good, so we’re going to have our hands full tomorrow.”

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About Max Molski

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Email: maximilian.molski@quinnipiac.edu
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Year: 2018
Major: Journalism