Crimson Drops Third in Row

Terriers grab lead early, hold on to win tight non-conference game

BOSTON–It looks like the Harvard men’s hockey team is going to the dogs. After Saturday’s loss against the Yale Bulldogs, the Crimson (2-7-0, 1-6-0 ECAC) yielded to the Terriers (4-2-4, 3-2-3 ECAC) at the Agganis Arena by a 2-1 margin last night.

B.U. gained a lead that it never gave up 3:50 into the game, when Tom Morrow launched a shot past goalie Justin Tobe’s shoulder. The Terriers outshot Harvard 14-5 for the period, and the Crimson offense had difficulty with B.U. netminder John Curry throughout the game.

Harvard managed only four shots from the circles in that time and none from any closer.

“They pressured us in a lot of situations,” said Crimson coach Ted Donato ‘91, whose team mustered only six shots on four power-play opportunities. “To me, we just didn’t execute. BU did a good job blocking shots and sailing in front of the net.”

Harvard managed to kill a five-minute major penalty when sophomore Jack Christian was put in the box for hitting from behind 14:30 into the first. The Terriers had several close chances, but Tobe countered with quick saves each time. And for its part, the Crimson struggled to mount any sustained attack.

“I wasn’t so much disappointed with our play on five-for-five, but we got shorthanded there from time to time,” Donato said. “We had the puck around the net, but we didn’t get a lot of great looks.”

The Terriers doubled their lead 9:24 into the second period, as Chris Higgins took a shot from the left post to up the Terrier’s lead to 2-0.

“When you’re playing against a good team, the smallest of details need to be watched,” Donato said. “The second goal, we lost a guy on the faceoff and didn’t have good coverage of the net.”

But twenty seconds later, the Crimson countered with a goal of its own. Freshman Alex Biega drove a shot into the back of the net off assists from seniors Ryan Maki and Kevin Du, bringing the score to 2-1.

Although Harvard had 11 shots on goal during the third period—the only frame in which the team outshot the Terriers—the Crimson failed to tie it up in the end and fell short, 2-1.

“Desperate teams play well in the third period,” captain Dylan Reese said. “It’s an issue of urgency. When you’re down, it’s just the nature of it…[but] when you put yourself in the hole, you can’t always come back, especially against a good team.”

Harvard is currently tied for last in the ECAC with two points. The Crimson faces league-leading Quinnipiac (nine points) and fellow cellar-dweller Princeton (two points) at the Bright Center this coming weekend, and then former conference foe Vermont visits the following Tuesday.

After that, Harvard has more than two weeks of rest before a mid-December game against ECAC rival Dartmouth (eight points), also in the Bright Hockey Center.