Bobcats Take Series
Bulldogs Put Up Fight in 5-3 Loss
HAMDEN, Conn. – Their hopes for an ECAC Hockey Championship were dashed by No. 6 ranked Quinnipiac, but the Bulldogs put up a great fight in game two of the quarterfinal playoff series, a 5-3 decision, at High Point Solutions Arena.
Yale, trying to keep its season alive, erased 2-0 and 3-1 deficits before being outscored by two in the third period. The only hope for the Elis is an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament, and they entered the night at No. 17 in the PairWise Rankings.
Quinnipiac, which advances to Lake Placid for the conference semifinals next Friday, outshot Yale 34-26.
The opening period was not a good one for the Bulldogs, other than a power-play tally by John Hayden (in photo) that cut a 2-0 lead in half on the way to a 3-1 intermission. On Hayden's fifth of the year and second of the series, Jesse Root sent the puck low to Kenny Agostino who quickly moved it to the slot for a Hayden one-timer.
"I thought Hayden was one of our better players last night, and he was even better tonight," said Keith Allain '80, Yale's Malcolm G. Chace Head Coach, about one of his rookies. "Our freshman did a good job this year and we expect big things from them in the future."
The bounce in the step of the Bulldog was back in a wild second period. Yale got 15 shots on target, moved the puck very well and found the net twice to even things heading into the third.
The visitors cut the lead to 3-2 when Mike Doherty took a pass from Mitch Witek along the left boards over the blueline and skated through the circle toward the net. Doherty, who bounced back from a bad cut the night before, went from forehand to backhand and flipped the puck off Michael Garteig's shoulder. The puck bounced in the air and came down at the goalie's feet, which were already inside the goal line. A Bobcat defenseman had fallen on the ice and pushed his netminder backwards. That Yale tally came at 2:56 and was Doherty's ninth of the season.
Shortly after the tally, Quinnipiac was on the advantage and it turned into crazy action at both ends. Yale got three or four shots on goal, including two consecutive by Root, while the Bobcats had a wild flurry of shots at the other end. Alex Lyon, who had 29 saves, kept his composure through it all and came out of the period without allowing a goal.
The equalizer came at 17:11 of the second after a great, no-look, backhand, break-out pass by Agostino, who was pinned along the left boards. The senior forward hit Root in stride and the captain zipped up ice and over the blueline. He left the puck off to Hayden on the right side and took the defense with him toward the net. The rookie right wing took three strides before unleashing a rising wrister that went top shelf for his third goal of the series.
An interference call on the Elis early in the third period quickly helped Quinnipiac re-gain the lead back. If that wasn't the back breaker, the Sam Anas, even-strength wrister midway through the final period was to make it 5-3.
When asked after the game about his team's goaltending this weekend, Allain said, "our team game wasn't good enough for me to say."
Filed by Steve Conn, Yale Sports Publicity Director
John Hayden image by Jack Warhola