CATS, TIGERS, DOGS
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – The second-to-last weekend of regular season play at Ingalls Rink features Quinnipiac and Princeton squaring off against Yale (12-7-4, 7-6-3) as teams jostle for position in the ECAC standings. The No. 13 Bulldogs host the No. 4 Bobcats (20-5-5, 10-3-3) on Friday in a contest pitting the two 2013 NCAA finalists that airs on CPTV. The Elis and Tigers (4-19, 3-13) play Saturday. Both face-offs on Yale's Alumni Weekend are 7 p.m. and can be seen on the Ivy Digital Network and heard on AM-1340.
The Yale Ticket Office began selling for the 2013-14 hockey season in early September. All tickets for the Feb. 14 game went in two days, clearly a school record for any sport. There are only SRO tickets available for Saturday night's game.
WATCHING ON CPTV
If you are in Connecticut and don't have tickets, you can view the game on CPTV through the following: Cablevision – 139; Charter – 223; Comcast - 966 (256 in Ridgefield, Bethel, and Danbury); Cox – 805; Metrocast – 418 and Thames Valley – 87.
Quinnipiac has a 10-6-3 lead in the series with Yale after the two tied (3-3) at Hamden in November. Last year, the Cats won both regular-season meetings before they split the two post-season games, one in the ECAC Hockey Tournament consolation contest and the other at the Frozen Four… Saturday is the 249th meeting between Yale and Princeton with the Elis holding a 137-102-9 lead. The Blue has won the last six, including a 5-2 game at Old Nassau in November and a 3-2 decision at the Prudential Center in October.
Alex Lyon had a career-high 48 saves and the Blue had goals from Ryan Obuchowski, Frankie DiChiara and Mike Doherty in a 3-3 OT tie at High Point Solutions Arena. The visitors erased a two-goal deficit to earn the road point… Patrick Spano made 23 saves and Tommy Fallen scored twice in Yale's 5-2 win at Baker Rink in November. The Elis had points from nine different skaters.
2 POINTS IN CAPITAL DISTRICT
Tommy Fallen and Mike Doherty each had two goals as Yale won 3-2 in OT at RPI and then fell 5-3 at Union. The Blue erased 1-0 and 2-1 deficits to win at Troy before having a 2-1 lead at Schenectady and surrendering four straight goals. Four different Elis found the net over the weekend. Alex Lyon had 35 saves against the Engineers and 32 against the No. 4 Dutchmen.
Last weekend Yale was outscored 7-6 and outshot 74-52 while going 2-for-5 on the power play. The Bulldogs allowed 37 shots on target both nights but did not give up an advantage tally. The Elis had two penalties in each game. Five different skaters had assists at RPI, while it was six at Union.
Quinnipiac, which had unbeaten streaks of 13 and seven games this season, sits in second place in the ECAC after splitting home games with Clarkson and SLU last week. Freshman Sam Anas leads QU with 16 goals and 35 points, though senior Kellen Jones (15-20-35) is close behind. They are two of seven with double-digit goals for a team outscoring opponents 111-59. Michael Garteig (1.91, .907) has every decision in the Bobcat net. The Cats, No. 4 in this week's uscho.com poll, rank second in offense and third in defense in Division I.
Princeton, looking to snap a five-game skid at Brown on Friday, is coming off losses at home to Clarkson and St. Lawrence last week. The Tigers, who have a road win this year against Quinnipiac, have been led offensively by Andrew Ammon (8-4-12) and Tucker Brockett (2-9-11), the brother of former Yale player Charles Brockett. Senior Sean Bonar (3.95, .885) and rookie Colton Phinney (3.76, .896) have shared the goaltending duties.
Yale defensemen combined to produce 14-53-67 in 37 games last year, and they have been getting involved even more at the offensive end this year. The blueliners combined for 9-9-18 over the last three weeks and now have 20-35-55 this winter. Senior Gus Young (6-8-14), who played in his 100th game last Saturday, had a string of three games with goals. He also has points in seven of the last 10 contests and is 36th among Division I defensemen with .61points per game. Sophomore Ryan Obuchowski (2-11-13), who has six points in as many games, had three assists on Jan. 25. Junior Tommy Fallen (6-7-13) scored twice against Brown on Jan. 25 and RPI on Feb. 7.
SATURDAY NIGHT'S ALRIGHT FOR FIGHTING
Elton John wasn't thinking hockey when he wrote this song in the 70s, but the Bulldogs have been following the idea this season by going 8-2-3 on Saturdays. However, last week's 3-2 win at RPI was Yale's first on a Friday night since Nov. 22, and the Elis are 3-5-1 on that night this year.
Kenny Agostino, who has a team-high 11 goals, has seven points in as many games… Jesse Root has eight assists over last five games… Mike Doherty returned to the lineup after missing five straight games and scored the OT winner at RPI and the first Yale goal at Union last week… Yale suited up the same lineup both nights last week… After winning at RPI, the Elis are 3-5-3 in games opponents scored first and 2-3-1 in contests they trailed after two periods… Yale is 3-3 in one-goal games… Yale is 2-4-2 against teams that were ranked at the time… Three of Yale's last six games are against teams in the top 16 of the PairWise Rankings… The Blue is 5th in the Ivy standings (5 points) with four games (8 possible points) left and trails first-place Cornell by eight points.
Yale remains in 6th place in the conference, three points behind fifth-place Clarkson and two points ahead of RPI. The top four get a first-round playoff bye and home ice for the quarterfinals.
The Bulldogs are No. 13 in both the uscho.com and USA Today/American Hockey Magazine polls this week. Yale has finished among the top 10 four of the last five seasons, including No. 1 in 2012-13. The Elis were 5th in 2008-09, 8th in 2009-10 and 6th in 2010-11.
Yale, 2013 Frozen Four Champions, has earned a spot in the NCAA Tournament four of the last five years, and played in a pair of regional finals.
The Yale roster includes players from 12 different states, two provinces and Norway. Five players represent New Jersey, Minnesota has three players while Massachusetts, Florida, and Michigan each contribute a pair.
The United States Hockey League contributed nine players to the Bulldog roster. There are three from the British Columbia Hockey League, four from the Eastern Junior Hockey League and one from the Atlantic Junior Hockey League. Eight Yale student-athletes came directly from prep schools and one came from the US National Team.
The Bulldogs have just three seniors, including two forwards and a defenseman. There are seven juniors, eight sophomores and eight newcomers. The scoring by class has been very balanced: seniors (24), sophomores (20), juniors (17) and newcomers (14).
Yale's Class of 2017, which has been averaging four forwards in the lineup, has contributed 14 goals (4 GWG) and 38 points while grabbing every minute of playing time between the pipes.
"Ice hockey has never had as provocative a setting as Yale's new $1.4 million David S. Ingalls Rink." That's how Sports Illustrated described the famous building also known as the Yale Whale in a 1959 article. And it's just as exciting today. Ingalls (3,500 capacity), re-dedicated on Jan. 16, 2010, was modernized and expanded during a multi-phase project. The original (1958) look remains, but 13,000 square feet of operational space was added along with numerous amenities.
DECORATED DOGS ON D
Junior Tommy Fallen (Plymouth, Minn.), a 2012-13 All-Ivy honorable mention pick, has six goals this year in three games. He has skated in 95 games and has 56 points, 10th on the school's career list for defensemen... Sophomore Ryan Obuchowski (West Bloomfield, Mich.), who had three assists vs. Brown on Jan. 25, was a 2012-13 ECAC All-Rookie Team selection... Rob O'Gara, a second-year man from Nesconset, N.Y., is a Boston Bruins draft pick. He and Gus Young (Colorado) are the two blueliners picked by pro teams.
NCAAs AT BRIDGEPORT
Yale and Fairfield are co-hosting the 2014 NCAA East Regional at Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport on March 28-29. The Friday semifinal game times are 2 and 5:30 p.m. with coverage by ESPNU. The Saturday championship game is set for 3 p.m. on ESPN2. Tickets for 3-game packages are available now on www.NCAA.com/frozenfour, or through the Webster Bank Ticket Office. This is the fourth year Yale and Fairfield have co-hosted this regional at Harbor Yard. This is the fourth time Webster Bank will host the regional. There have been four college hockey programs (Yale, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota-Duluth) with NCAA titles that have played in Bridgeport's NCAA event. Miami, Vermont, Union, Air Force and UMass-Lowell are the other schools to compete in the arena.
Yale is one of only two (Niagara) teams in the country with freshmen logging all the minutes in net this season. Alex Lyon (Baudette, Minn.) has started the last 18 games. Lyon, who averages 25 saves per appearance, had a season-high 48 saves (most since Nick overall), while his .922 SP is fourth among Division I frosh and 22nd overall. Patrick Spano (Montreal, Que) was in net for three Yale wins and has a 1.93 GAA and a .924 SP. Sophomore Connor Wilson (Cary, NC) is the other goalie in the mix.
BULLDOGS PLAYING PRO THIS WINTER
There are five current Yale players drafted by NHL teams: Gus Young (Colorado), Kenny Agostino (Pittsburgh, Calgary), Rob O'Gara (Boston), Matthew Beattie (Vancouver) and John Hayden (Chicago). Fifteen former Yale players have skated professionally this season including Vancouver Canucks forward Chris Higgins '05 and Mark Arcobello '10 with the Edmonton Oilers. Arcobello helped make club history when he assisted on Taylor Hall's two goals, eight seconds apart in October. It was the fastest consecutive goals by an Oiler since Wayne Gretzky had a nine-second outburst during the team's dynasty years. After the first 10 games, the Milford, Conn., native had accumulated a league-high 10 assists, which also made him the league's rookie points leader at the time and put him in a unique group. Only two rookies in the last 20 years – Sydney Crosby and Patrick Kane - had 10 assists in their first 10 games. The Bulldogs have had seven skating in the AHL, four outside North America and two in the ECHL.
filed by Steve Conn, Yale Sports Publicity Director