Those of us who thought the varsity hockey team was indestructible are naturally a little disappointed about its loss, 2 to 1, to Cornell at Ithaca last Saturday night--especially since it is the first time in 51 years that Harvard has been defeated by Cornell. That defeat, however, could be a blessing in disguise.
If the upset by the Big Red has fully awakened the sextet from its exam-period slumber, then the defeat can possibly be excused. In tonight's game against Boston College, however, the team cannot allow itself any such lapses.
Loss Ends Win Streak
The B.C. match, at 9 a.m. in the Boston Garden, is the first round of the Beanpot Tournament representing college hockey supremacy in Boston. It is a game Coach Cooney Weiland's team wants to win and deserves to win very much.
The loss to Cornell, which ended a seven-game winning streak, has a fairly simple (and familiar) analysis. "We did everything but put the puck in the net," reported Cooney Weiland. The reason for this was, of course, Cornell's phenomenal goalie Laing Kennedy who has been averaging about 45 saves a game against the Crimson for the past two years.
On Saturday Kennedy made 48 saves and about ten of them, in the spectacular category, came in the final few minutes when Weiland had five forwards on the ice at once pumping away. Kennedy's victory was aided somewhat by his goal cage's posts on about six occasions, but there is little evidence that Kennedy had not planned on this support in the first place.
If the exam-period layoff dimmed the team's accuracy at Ithaca, it certainly did not slow it up at all. As Kennedy's save total indicates, the Crimson completely dominated play, and Cornell did not get its first shot at Harvard goalie Godfrey Wood until halfway through the first period.
The Red, winning its first hockey game against the Crimson in 51 years, scored first at 12:22 of the second period on a rebound shot. It added the winning goal at 3:02 of the final period on a screen shot from the blue line. Ike Ikauniks scored the varsity's only goal from in close at 11:02 after taking a pass from defenseman Harry Howell.
During the final eight minutes of the game Weiland shuffled and reshuffled his lines, using more and more forwards until five were on the ice. These changes, he said, will not necessarily be used tonight against Boston College.
"We expect to use the same outfit as usual," Cooney added. This is the same team that edged B.C. earlier this season, 3 to 2. In that game the Crimson also controlled most of the play but needed a "garbage goal" by Gene Kinasewich to beat some sensational goal tending by the Eagles' Charlie Driscoll.
Driscoll and one or two other capable Eagle skaters will be doing their best to make things tough for the varsity tonight. However, that should not be enough if Weiland's team is "ready" and he reports that it most certainly is.
Bob Bland suffered a ten-stitch cut during a pre-game practice at Ithaca so Wood, who had 23 saves against B.C. last month will probably be in the goal.
Unreserved balcony seats for tonight's game are available at 60 Boylsten St. until 4:30 p.m