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March 23, 2013 E-MAIL PRINT Bookmark and Share

Yale's Frustration Apparent in Loss

NCAA Hopes Hang in the Balance

by Joshua Seguin/Staff Writer

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — Yale is a team that often relies upon its high-octane offense to win them games. But when that high-powered offense struggles to find the back of the net, it's not a good sign.

This weekend, Yale's offense disappeared at the wrong time. It got shut out in two games, including a desperate consolation game aginst Quinnipiac. The losses cost Yale not only an ECAC title, but put it on the edge of missing the NCAAs as well.

The scoreless streak for the Bulldogs now sits at 132 minutes, and 51 seconds.

The game meant nothing of substance to Quinnipiac, and everything to Yale. But Yale couldn't must anything that would secure its NCAA ticket. Consolation games are awkward to begin with, but Yale should have had plenty of motivation.

Of course, playing the league's top team isn't easy, no matter the setting. And the loss was Yale's third to Quinnipiac in as many games against them this season. In the three games, Yale was outscored, 13-3. If just one of those results had flipped, Yale would have been a lock for the tournament next week, but now the fate lies in other team’s hands.

Yale needs Michigan to lose the CCHA title game in order to get a bid.

The realization of missed opportunities, and the frustrations within, were apparent as Yale quicky bolted out of Boardwalk Hall, without addressing the media. In what is typically a mandatory event, Yale's coaches chose to leave instead.

What that means, or how that approach bodes going forward, remains to be seen. Maybe Yale still believes in itself and feels it was the victim of strong goaltending and tough breaks — but we'll never know, because it didn't say.

In the semifinal on Friday, the Bulldogs generated just six grade-A chances against Union goaltender Troy Grosenick. On Saturday, they had more chances but again struggled getting golden opportunities to the net.

Both Grosenick and Hartzell are great goaltenders and have been all-conference selections in the past two years. To beat them, it takes a determination that was lacking at times from Yale. The "dirty work" wasn't there.

Bounces and luck are also huge in hockey. Sometimes teams will say they didn't get a bounce, but a team also creates their own bounces with hard work and having good position. Twice, the Bulldogs appeared to score against Quinnipiac and twice they were denied. In the first period, a puck that appeared to cross the line never did, and in the second period the net was dislodged before the puck entered it. But such is luck sometimes in hockey it can be a cruel game.

Yale will await its fate, which won’t be known until all the games are done this weekend. At this point the opportunity it had to control its own destiny was wasted.

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