Princeton, St. Lawrence Get OT Wins in ECAC Openers
CHN Staff Report
Princeton's Andrew Ammon scored 10:38 into overtime as the Tigers stunned Clarkson in the first game of their best-of-3 series. Princeton comes in as the 12th seed, having lost five in a row, and Clarkson the fifth seed.
"I just kind of jumped up and all the guys were out there and we just got straight off the ice," Ammon said, chuckling, about his game winner.
Princeton moved Johnny Liau from forward to defense in overtime, and it paid off on the shift that won the game.
“We (needed) a little bit of help back there," Princeton coach Bob Prier said. "There were some guys that were battling and playing through and logging a lot of ice time so Johnny was actually playing D in a shift in overtime and he and Ammon made a nice little exchange up top in the high area of the ice. ... Real nice goal.”
Andrew Calof had scored a power-play goal 6:15 into the third to tie the game. But defense was the key, Prier said.
“I think we played better defensively," Prier said. "We just kind of stuck with to the process. We did our jobs a little bit better and did a lot better though the neutral zone and getting in their faces and not giving them as much space and ice. Our penalty kill went 4-for-5, which was good, so I think that was a big difference.”
Freshman goalie Alex Lyon stopped all 24 shots he faced in his first career playoff game, as Yale shut out Harvard, 4-0, to take Game 1 of their series. Lyon also had a shutout last week in the regular season's final game.
Yale took a first-period lead on a goal from Jesse Root on a delayed penalty.
“It was a really nice pass from Ken [Agostino]," Root said. "I saw a little opening, so I got through and he put it right on my stick and I was able to get around a defenseman. I saw the goalie move one way and I just tried to put it back the other and luckily it went in."
Gus Young, Cody Learned and Carson Cooper also scored for Yale.
“I think it was a really good defensive game, and that’s what led to offense for us tonight,” said Learned, who had a two-point night. “But we have to be ready for tomorrow.”
His coach agreed.
“Hockey, to me, is the ultimate team game, and I thought we played a good team game tonight,” Yale coach Keith Allain said. “You’re gonna have to if you want to advance.
“I think against a team like Harvard it’s real important that you defend first. I thought we played a strong game defensively. At the same time, I thought we showed real good intensity around their net offensively.”
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Freshman defenseman Eric Sweetman scored 1:27 into the second overtime, just his second goal of the season, to give St. Lawrence a 3-2 win over Brown in Game 1 of their best-of-3 series.
Sweetman, who last scored a goal in game four of the season at Ferris State, fired a shot from just inside the blue line which went over the shoulder of Brown goalie Tyler Steel and under the crossbar. Sweetman's goal came after senior Jeremy Wick worked the puck away from a Brown defender and slid it back to the rookie blueliner who was about three strides inside the blue line.
It was a tough loss for Steel, who made 43 saves in the game and was brilliant in the first overtime with six of his 11 saves coming on a St. Lawrence power play.
“It ended up being a real good game, but usually in overtime it’s the bounce of a puck or somebody winning a battle, and credit to them they came out really hard in the second overtime,” Brown coach Brendan Whittet said. “Steel played great, made some huge saves and gave us a chance to win.”
Greg Carey scored his 16th for St. Lawrence late in the second period to give his team the lead. It was 2-1 late until Brown's Nick Lappin tied it with the goalie pulled with 55 seconds left in regulation.
Saints senior goalie Matt Weninger had his busiest period of the night in the first overtime as he made 13 of his 26 saves.
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Rensselaer got two goals from Ryan Haggerty, his 25th and 26th of the season, to defeat Dartmouth, 4-1, in Game 1.