CRIMSON LIVE: Men's Hockey @ Cornell

A first-round bye is on the line at Lynah Rink in the regular-season finale

20:00: As Harvard celebrates at the net, the Lynah faithful toss more fish and even some trash. The Crimson skaters, though, are too happy to care. Final score from Ithaca: Harvard 3, Cornell 1. The Crimson gets a first-round bye in the ECAC playoffs... see you in two weeks.

19:00: Cornell still has the extra attacker, but Harvard is limiting the Big Red's quality shots.

18:19: HARVARD GOAL! Empty net. Moments after coach Mike Schafer pulls Scrivens, Tyler Magura launches the puck from the neutral zone, and it glides into the bottom-right corner of the net. Harvard 3, Cornell 1.

17:30: With Rogers sliding around, Krueger gets a shot on net, but Richter saves it. A series of Cornell shots has everyone tense before Taylor can clear it away.

16:27: The Crimson breaks out on a counter-attack, but Cornell's defense prevents Harvard from getting a shot on net before the net is knocked off its moorings.

15:18: The Harvard forecheck is keeping Cornell at bay, and the Big Red can't seem to set up its offense.

13:27: HARVARD GOAL! Paul Dufault wins the faceoff, and the puck bounces around. Despite taking several hacks, no one can really get a good shot on net, until Dufault slides it past an out-of-position Scrivens from the left side. Harvard 2, Cornell 1.

13:19: Cornell ices the puck. Can Harvard make anything of the faceoff in the Big Red zone?

12:48: Taylor passes it from behind the net to Rogers at the left post, who has his shot deflected up and into the protective netting.

11:50: Mike Devin gets a good opportunity from the slot as the puck dribbles out to him, but he half-whiffs and weakly sends the puck wide.

10:32: Barlow turns it over, delivering it right to Michael Biega in Cornell's right faceoff circle. Biega takes it in and gets a low shot on Scrivens, but the netminder makes the save. That's been the Crimson's best chance all period.

8:00: Jared Seminoff delivers a punishing open-ice hit to Rogers at the Cornell blue line.

6:20: This period has been all Cornell so far. The Crimson can't even get a whiff at Scrivens.

3:33: Alex Biega muffs the puck in the neutral zone, and Patrick Kennedy carries it into the offensive zone, getting it across to Greening on the right side for a shot that Richter saves. The puck then caroms across the crease, but again, no one is there for the rebound. The Crimson simply can't keep this up if it expects to stay in the game.

1:48: Richter makes a save, then Patrick Kennedy trickles the puck past him with a backhand from behind the net. No one's there, so Richter is safe -- for now.

00:07: Cornell returns to full strength.

00:00: It all comes down to this, the third period at Lynah Rink. Could you ask for anything else? (Well, other than tickets to this game.) Harvard has the overall shot advantage, 14-12 -- again, a surprisingly low number! -- but it's going to have play much better if it wants to thwart a charge by the home team.

STILL SECOND INTERMISSION: An update on the Union situation: the Dutchmen are even with the Bears, 0-0, in the second period. If we have a tie in both games, Harvard, Union, and Cornell will finish 3-4-5, as Harvard owns both tiebreakers and the Dutchmen have the advantage over the Big Red. Now if that doesn't make for an exciting third period, I don't know what does.

SECOND INTERMISSION: Zamboni dude is back, this time with regal apparel. In the meantime, this interesting tidbit: the Cornell roster features three sets of siblings: Brendon and Riley Nash, Michael and Patrick Kennedy, and twins Mike and Joe Devin. And even if the media guide claims that Taylor and Troy Davenport are not related, we're betting that they were just separated at birth.

20:00: The Crimson does little in the last minute of the period, and the Lynah faithful erupt into a frenzy as the Big Red kills off all but seven seconds of the Harvard power play. Donato has to be furious.

19:00: Harvard is back on the 4-on-3 after failing to challenge Scrivens on the 5-on-3. The Crimson is not getting very many shots towards net.

18:07: Blake Gallagher is a little too pumped up from the goal and levels Matt McCollem in the Harvard zone. Two minutes for boarding will give Harvard a brief 4-on-3, then about half a minute of 5-on-3.

17:16: CORNELL GOAL! 4-on-4. Greening gets a pass from Nash and breaks free into the Harvard zone, launching a quick shot past Richter and into the right-side netting. Harvard 1, Cornell 1.

16:52: Fraser goes down hard along the left-side boards in the Harvard zone. We'll be back to 4-on-4, with Scott picking up a minor for boarding.

16:22: After a period of play characterized by what Donato calls "Hudson Bay rules," Dell seems to crack down on a relatively minor infraction. Watters gets two minutes for roughing, and Cornell is back on the power play.

15:45: Pelle gets tripped up as he skates into the Harvard zone, but Dell is unimpressed.

14:47: Morin rings one off the post, but the Big Red is able to get the puck away and out of its zone.

13:35: After a miscue by Taylor Davenport at the Cornell blue line, Fraser picks up the pick and fires from the right side, but Scrivens makes a pad save.

13:22: This period is progressing much more slowly than the last one, with many more stoppages.

12:05: Fraser gets dropped by Joe Devin in the Crimson zone, but MacDonald carries down the ice and launches a shot that is blocked, the puck flying into the protective netting. Faceoff deep in the Cornell zone.

10:56: Dave Watters flicks away a puck, then is checked along the boards so hard that he loses his mouthguard -- out of his helmet.

9:44: After Scott tumbles in the Harvard zone, Jon Pelle scoops up the puck and takes it down the ice, launching a shot at Scrivens from the left circle -- the Crimson's first decent offensive opportunity in minutes.

8:50: The puck is flying all around Richter, and while he's only having to make a save here and there, there is very little time where he isn't in danger.

7:53: The Big Red is maintaining possession in the Harvard zone. Richter makes another save despite not seeming to know where the puck really is in his gear.

6:46: Back to 5-on-5, Cornell gets the puck on Richter, who makes a first save and then unknowingly traps the puck between his pads. Rogers delivers a shove after the whistle, but Dell is unimpressed by the crowd's call for a penalty.

5:50: Jimmy Fraser checks Mike Devin into head referee Alex Dell near the Harvard bench. That's pretty much the most exciting action of the 4-on-4 so far.

4:24: Jack Christian and Riley Nash do some hitting after the whistle, and the referees definitely notice. Let's play some 4-on-4 hockey.

3:15: Cornell launches a series of shots in the Harvard zone, but none of them give Richter a hard time. The Big Red is putting on some pressure, but it is less energetic than it was in the first period. Even the crowd has lost some of its enthusiasm.

2:10: A Doug Rogers turnover gives Cornell a 3-on-2, but the Big Red can't get a shot on net.

00:42: A relatively relaxed start to the period. Harvard ices the puck, giving Cornell a faceoff in the Harvard zone.

00:00: As Donato retakes the ice, he gets another round of "Bald!" chants. But this time, he gets the last laugh, as he rubs his head good-naturedly.

FIRST INTERMISSION: Despite an energetic first period, the two teams combine for only nine shots on target, with Cornell tallying one more than Harvard. But one dude in here has major game: the Zamboni driver, who rumbles onto the ice in reverse and wearing a Trojan-style helmet.

20:00: Not too much action in the closing seconds. Cornell has got to be feeling pretty bummed after earning three power-play opportunities and coming out of the period down a goal. Meanwhile, as Donato leaves the ice, the crowd serenades him with a chant of "Bald! Bald! Bald! Bald!"

19:10: Evan Barlow centers a pass right in front of a Richter, but no one's there for it. Meanwhile, Del Mauro is buzzing on both ends, skating harder than anyone else out there.

16:48: Cornell certainly seems ticked off by the shorthanded goal, and while it manages some shots on net, it seems to be out of the driver's seat. Meanwhile, even the reporters in the press box are in awe of Taylor's shorthanded move.

15:09: HARVARD GOAL! Shorthanded. Mike Taylor breaks free of the Harvard zone and takes the puck up the ice. With a defender on his back and a stick around his waist, he dekes Scrivens and slots a backhand between the goaltender's right pad and the left post. Harvard 1, Cornell 0.

14:48: Ian Tallett heads for the box after some rough play in the corner of the Harvard zone, whistled for two minutes for hitting from behind.

13:20: Colin Greening centers to defender Justin Krueger in the slot, but Richter is there as five guys tumble into a pile around the net.

13:01: Just like that, the Crimson's power play is over. There was some decent passing, but very little in terms of offensive chances.

12:42: Harvard is maintaining some pressure, but it can't get a good shot on net.

11:01: Brendon Nash hooks Taylor, and we've got our first Harvard power play. Stay tuned.

10:30: Cornell captain Topher Scott may be small, but he is mighty. He's giving his Crimson defenders some problems.

9:00: Harvard has its first extended possession in the Cornell zone and launches a few good shots. No real challenge for Scrivens, though.

7:12: Harvard is back at full strength. On that last power play, the Crimson looked more threatening than the Big Red. Let's see what Harvard can do with the momentum.

6:25: Taylor takes the puck up the ice, and David MacDonald actually logs a shorthanded shot (albeit one that Ben Scrivens easily saves). Cornell's power play looks really perplexed.

6:00: The Crimson may be taking penalties, but it's killing them, too. Cornell hasn't gotten a good power-play opportunity yet.

5:12: Harvard is trying too hard. Chad Morin goes for a check but grabs the neck of his opponent. Another Big Red man advantage.

4:30: Nick Coskren makes contact against the boards. Harvard is trying to be physical, but right now, Cornell just looks faster and stronger.

3:30: Another big check in the Cornell zone. Harvard just can't maintain possession for very long.

2:38: Harvard is back to full strength. Kyle Richter gets by largely unscathed.

2:00: Harvard killer Doug Krantz almost gets a stick on a centering pass, but he can't connect from the slot.

00:38: Mike Taylor knocks a Cornell skater into the net, and the Big Red is on the power play. That's probably not how Ted Donato drew up the first minute in the locker room.

00:15: Cornell delivers the first big check. The Big Red will be physical in its own building.

00:00: It's gametime. Listen for the referee's whistle -- if you can hear it through the crowd.

T-5: Only one lineup change of note: freshman forward Michael Del Mauro is in for classmate Joe Smith on the second line. The crowd shakes newspapers, bored by the announcements of the Crimson starting six.

T-7: As expected, the fish rain down on the Harvard skaters, spewing their guts. ("Their" deliberately left ambiguous.) The Crimson lines up on the other side of the ice, taking shelter from the seafood.

T-8: There is barely an empty seat in the house, and the crowd is ready to go. Chants of "Let's go, Red!" and "Harvard sucks!" echo around the rink as the referees take the ice.

T-15: As Harvard and Cornell gather in their respective locker rooms, let's take a look at the ECAC standings. The Big Red, the Crimson, and Union are tied for third place. With the Dutchmen playing last-place Brown, the loser of tonight's matchup at Lynah may find itself in fifth place and out of a first-round bye. More than just pride is on the line in this rivalry matchup, and since the game won't be televised, your best bet is to settle in with us on this cold, cold Saturday night.

T-30: The two teams and the Cornell University Band warm up as the first group of hardy fans starts to form what will be a sellout crowd. Even Bartels Hall is filling up to capacity as the Ivy League champion Big Red men's basketball team prepares to take on the Crimson. In other action, Day 1 of the Heptagonals is complete here in Ithaca. It's a sports fan's dream!

--Staff writer Karan Lodha is live on the scene at Lynah Rink in Ithaca, N.Y.