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The Photos That Captured the 2010s

M. Hockey Sweeps Dartmouth and Vermont

By Michael R. Volonnino, Crimson Staff Writer

The last time the Harvard men's hockey team started a season this well, the team advanced to the NCAA semifinals.

While not even the most diehard Crimson fan would confuse those two teams, the wins are a welcome change from Harvard's 0-8-1 ECAC start of a year ago.

Harvard opened the season 3-0 for the first time since 1993-1994 this weekend by sweeping Dartmouth and Vermont, 7-2 and 6-3, respectively on Friday and Saturday night in front of a raucous combined Bright Hockey Center crowd of 4,553.

"This weekend was very big," captain Trevor Allman said. "It's all about confidence with our new system right now, and putting the past behind us."

There's no better way to put the past away than with some new blood, and the freshmen fit the bill.

Center Dominic Moore picked up three goals, including the game-winner against Vermont, and bruising winger Brett Nowak led all Harvard scorers with his first two collegiate goals and three assists.

Moore especially dazzled using his speed and creativity to break down the defense.

"We have a lot of confidence in all of our freshmen," Harvard Coach Mark Mazzoleni said. "These guys are going to play a significant role in our program."

Harvard progressed in the execution of Mazzoleni's puck-pressure system. Opposition goaltenders Eric Almon and Robert Delwo of Dartmouth and Andrew Allen of Vermont usually found a swarm of players around them.

The Crimson scoring came in bunches.

Harvard held a 2-1 lead through most of the second period against the Big Green, but a wrist shot from senior defenseman Matt Scorsune at 14:52 opened a three-goal outburst in the span of five minutes to turn a tight game into a rout.

Harvard actually trailed, 3-2 entering the third period against the Catamounts on Saturday before sophomore defenseman Peter Capouch tied up the game on the power play at 6:56, sparking a four-goal final frame.

All told, 14 different Crimson players appeared in the score sheet for the weekend.

"We really wanted to start this season and sort of send a message to the league that we're gonna be real contenders this year," senior goaltender J.R. Prestifilippo said. "We wanted to get the offense going and that's what we did."

Harvard 6, Vermont 3

For the first time in this new season, the Crimson faced some adversity.

Despite outshooting the Catamounts 14-9 in the second period, Harvard found itself losing 3-2 after Kevin Karlander's backhander from between the hash marks beat junior goalie Oliver Jonas, who started his first game of the season Saturday, through the five-hole.

Undaunted, the Crimson pressured Allen from the start of the third and it

finally struck with just over 13 minutes remaining on the power play.

The Crimson managed to keep the puck in its zone for most of the man advantage and ultimately Scorsune slid the puck to Capouch at the right point. Capouch blasted the puck through a big screen past Allen.

"We needed something at that point," Capouch said. "We were working so hard and getting so many chances. It was nice to be rewarded for that."

Dominic Moore put the Crimson up for good at 9:10 of the period. Working the puck down low, his fake caused his defender to fall down, freeing his path to the net. On the mini-breakaway, Moore deked and tucked his shot through Allen's legs.

"Moore's pretty elusive, he's slippery," Mazzoleni said. "He's got real quick hands and he protects the puck well and he gets around you."

It was clear sailing from there as the Crimson took over the game and Vermont never really threatened again.

Senior winger Brett Chodorow gave Harvard a 5-3 lead late in the period wristing home a shot set up by the brutal hard work of Steve Moore and Nowak.

"I thought our team showed a lot of determination in the third period," Mazzoleni said. "I was proud of that and that's a very good sign."

During the first period, it seemed like the Crimson would not need a late-game outburst. Harvard jumped out to a 2-0 lead on goals by sophomore winger Jeff Stonehouse and Allman.

Allman's backhanded wraparound goal, at 10:36 of the first period was setup by the sophomore winger Kyle Clark's digging along the boards deep in the UVM zone.

The 2-0 lead did not last the period. Vermont scored two goals within 38 seconds late in the first to tie the score. Both goals--a long slap shot from the left point by Jim Gernander and a soft wrist shot from behind the right face-off dot by J.F. Caudron--were shots that Jonas probably should have had.

"I thought that the way we played in the first period was the best we've played in years," Vermont Coach Mike Gilligan said. "But in the second and third, [Harvard] did to us what we were doing to them and they deserved to win the game."

Despite the soft goals, Mazzoleni, stuck with Jonas, who at 14:01 of the first had made a spectacular glove save on a mini-breakaway by Ryan Cox.

He got stronger as the game went on. Vermont tried to rattle him further with a series of long shots, but he seemed to regain his confidence on a snapping glove save with 29 seconds left in the second period.

Jonas finished the game with 28 saves.

"Oliver made some very big saves for us, some that he shouldn't make. And he let some in," Mazzoleni said. "It's good for him to recover like that. I know our kids enjoy playing in front of him."

Harvard also cut down on its penalties, taking just two while going 2-for-3 on the power play.

Junior winger Scott Turco rounded out the scoring for the Crimson with an empty-net goal.

Harvard 7, Dartmouth 2

If Mazzoleni had planned to incorporate the Crimson freshmen into the lineup slowly, he apparently forgot to tell them.

The first three goals of this 7-2 win over Dartmouth were firsts for the snipers.

Dominic Moore sparked the weekend with a dream first college strike. Taking the puck down the left wing, he undressed Dartmouth defender Carl Desjardins, sliding the puck ahead of him and lifting his stick up and over him. He then executed a triple deke on Almon to give Harvard a 1-0 lead.

Nowak followed him at 14:20 of the second, deflecting a well-screened Capouch floater from the left point to hand Harvard a 2-0 lead.

"Definitely, it will be memorable," said Moore of his first goal. "I really don't think when I am in those situations. I just took it to the backhand and saw five-hole was open and slid it through."

The momentum started to shift Dartmouth's way after center Mike Murray rounded out the scoring in the first period.

However, with the puck flopping around the Crimson goal for a good portion of the second period, Prestifilippo kept the puck out, making a number of good stops, including robbing winger Mike Maturo on a breakaway at 3:23.

Prestifilippo picked up right where he left off in his 1-0 shutout last weekend, finishing with 31 saves.

"I thought at times we were real puck-lucky," Mazzoleni said. "The puck bounced very, very well for us. I think a big difference was Prestifilippo. I think we out-goaltended them."

Scorsune restored the Crimson's two-goal cushion at 14:52 on a soft wrist shot similar to the second goal Jonas gave up against Vermont.

From there the floodgates opened, Dominic Moore tipped a shot home at 16:48 and Nowak pushed a Chodorow shot underneath Almon's pad.

After this point, the Big Green had really packed it in and the game turned quite chippy. An undisciplined Crimson took too many penalties, picking up 11 for 22 minutes, but killed off all but one of the eight Dartmouth power plays.

Chodorow and senior winger Matt Macleod rounded out the Crimson's scoring.

Macleod gave an extra fist pump in celebration of his goal, a sharp angle rebound shot from below the right face-off circle. A forgotten player under Ronn Tomassoni's coaching staff, Mazzoleni has given him, along with fellow senior winger Jamin Kerner, a chance to play.

His goal was a bit of vindication of the trust Mazzoleni has of both of them and a sign of the new spirit he has instilled in the entire team.

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