When Harvard and Northeastern faced off Wednesday night, the two hockey teams found themselves heading in different directions.
The Crimson (3-13, 2-9 ECAC) entered the contest on a four-game losing streak while the Huskies (7-10-4, 6-7-3 Hockey East) had won three of their last four. Neither team bucked the trend Wednesday, as Northeastern downed visiting Harvard, 3-0, at Matthews Arena. Huskies goaltender Chris Rawlings made 34 saves to keep the Crimson off the scoreboard.
“It was a frustrating game—just never felt like we got anything going,” sophomore Marshall Everson said. “I thought we played a decent first period, and after that, we got away from our game a little.”
Although Harvard asserted control of the ice early in the first period, the attack could not finish its opportunities. The Crimson pressured the Huskies and amassed a lead in shots, but Rawlings’ strong performance in net kept the score notched at zero.
With a minute remaining in the first frame, Northeastern tallied its first goal of the night. After receiving a pass from Mike Hewkin, forward Steve Quailer skated through the middle of the Harvard defense and slotted the puck past freshman goaltender Raphael Girard. Girard, making the first start of his career, saved 34 shots on the night.
“He kept us in it all the way to the end,” Everson said of Girard. “Overall, he made a lot of really big saves...Without him playing well, the game could have been out of our hands.”
Early in the second period, the Huskies added to the lead. Forward Braden Pimm tallied a goal at the 3:38 mark, finishing a rebound he collected from teammate Zak Stone’s shot. Both squads failed to convert on their power plays. Harvard went 0-4 while the Huskies squandered six man-advantage chances of their own.
Throughout the game, the Crimson struggled to stay out of the box, as the team committed 10 penalties, resulting in 28 minutes of Northeastern power play—something that has been a problem for Harvard all season.
“We can’t control [penalties] completely,” said Crimson co-captain Chris Huxley after the Jan. 15 game against Boston University. “We just have to try to be careful and be more disciplined.”
One highlight of the game was Harvard’s shorthanded play. The Crimson allowed just eight shots while down a skater.
Continuing their balanced attack, the Huskies notched a single goal in the final frame. At the 9:55 mark, Mike McLaughlin put Northeastern up for good with Rob Dongara and Brodie Reid providing assists.
Wednesday’s contest marked the second time Harvard has been shut out this season. But the empty scoreboard was not for lack of shots. Northeastern only held a 37-34 advantage over the Crimson in attempts on net. Harvard also found some early success in the game by playing physically, creating turnovers, and getting pucks on net.
“The [Northeastern] goalie played well,” Everson said. “We were able to get some good chances and shots on, [but] every time we got a rebound, he seemed to be there.”
The shutout also brought an end to junior Alex Killorn’s 10-game point streak, in which the forward registered four goals and seven assists. Killorn, along with senior Michael Biega, led the Crimson with five shots against Northeastern.
“Alex is obviously a really talented forward,” Everson said. “He does things in all three zones, and that allows [us] to create offense off him...When he’s out on the ice for us, it’s a big advantage.”
In his first game back from injury, sophomore forward Alex Fallstrom registered three shots.
—Staff writer Jake I. Fisher can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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