Harvard's varsity hockey team, ranked second in the nation, journeys to Ithaca, N.Y., today with hopes of savoring its second consecutive win at Lynah Rink by humiliating the Big Red before 4200 Cornell supporters.
Cornell's skaters, ranked eighth in the fetes national poll, will seek to restore their pride, which was punctured by a 7-4 home-ice loss to Harvard last season and, more recently, by a 4-2 defeat at Watson Rink in January.
The Crimson's a victory in Ithaca last year was Cornell's first home Ivy loss in 44 games. Harvard then went on to capture the Ivy League title for the first time since 1963, ending an eight-year Cornell rule, while the Big Red finished in a second-place tie with Dartmouth.
Cornell's icemen hold little chance of regaining the Ivy crown this season, as they stand 6-3 in the league with a 14-5-2 mark overall. Harvard remains unbeaten in Ivy competition, with eight wins, having earned a 17-3 record overall.
Cornell coach Dick Bertrand plans no major lineup changes from his last encounter with the Crimson except that sophomore Dave Chrastina will replace Steve Kelleher in the nets. Kelleher did not play as well as his Harvard counterpart, Brian Petrovek, in the Crimson's January victory.
Chrastins, one of 21 Canadians on a 23-man squad, currently holds a 3.44 goals-against average for nine games. Last month, in his first varsity start, he led the Big Red to a 7-4 win over St. Lawrence in the ECAC Holiday Hockey Festival finals, held in New York City.
Co-captain Dave Peace, the Most Valuable Player in the ECAC holiday tournament, paces the Big Red offense, boasting a team high total of 53 points on 23 goals and 30 assists. Brian Campbell, who centers Peace's line, stands second with 50 points, while Dave Groulx has 43 on 20 goals and 23 assists.
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