WEST POINT, N. Y.--Appropriately enough, Harvard hockey Coach Bill Cleary's secret weapon finally sparked here at the U.S. Military Academy last night.
That weapon--a five-forward power-play set of Captain Lane MacDonald, Allen Bourbeau, C.J. Young, Peter Ciavaglia and Ted Donato--produced two early goals and propelled Harvard to a 6-1 victory over Army in front of 2,133 spectators at Tate Rink.
The victory kept the Crimson (3-0 ECAC) atop the ECAC standings, tied with Cornell (a 3-2 winner over Clarkson) and St. Lawrence (a 9-2 winner over Colgate).
Unfortunately for Harvard, the victory turned Pyrrhic when sophomore John Wiesbrod suffered a severe concussion in the first period and had to be carried off the bench on a stretcher.
Weisbrod was kept overnight at the Academy's hospital for observation. His status was undetermined. In addition, Weisbrod's linemate sophomore Mike Vukonich stayed in Cambridge because of illness.
"It was scary, he really got hit," Cleary said. "The poor kid, he just did not know where he was. Anything like that is scary."
Sophomore goalie Mike Francis, making his first start of the season, recorded 22 saves in one of his best games in a Harvard uniform. He stopped several Army shots at crucial points in the contest.
With Harvard holding a 2-0 lead midway through the second period. Francis stopped three consecutive Rick Sheridan shots during a Cadet power play. Overall, Army connected on only one of seven power-play situations.
"It was good to get back," Francis said. "In the second period they only had five or six shots, but they were good shots. We played well defensively."
Such was not the case for Harvard. In fact, Bourbeau scored the Crimson's first goal while teammate Ed Presz was watching in the penalty box. Bourbeau took a pass from MacDonald, who stole the puck from Mark Hudak behind the net, and flipped the shot past goalie Corey Averill (21 saves). It was Bourbeau's first tally of the season.
The Crimson then proceeded to light up the red on two power-play situations and took a 3-0 lead.
"We controlled the puck pretty well and it was a good sign," MacDonald said. "So I think [the power play] will start clicking the next few games.
MacDonald scored the team's first power-play goal of the game--and his first tally of the season-- on a quick wrist shot off a Donato pass at the 9:51 mark of the opening period.
Young benefitted from the result of a MacDonald-Ciavaglia passing clinic, and Harvard led 3-0.
"Harvard's a great team," Army Coach Rob Riley said. "We can't get two or three goals behind them. Not with our team, it was over."
Harvard added three more goals in the final period while the Cadets capitalized on a score by Captain Brian Cox.
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