Doherty, Hitchcock, Snively Net 11 Points
NEW HAVEN, Conn. – It didn't take long for the Bulldogs to provide gifts for the fans who attended tonight's toy drive and exhibition game for the Yale-New Haven Children's Hospital. Yale, which collected plenty of toys from the fans to donate to the hospital, got a goal 48 seconds in and another before the two-minute mark on the way to a fan-friendly, 7-1 victory over the University of Ottawa at Ingalls Rink.
Mike Doherty had three goals and Ryan Hitchcock and Joe Snively each had a goal and three assists as the Elis tuned up for the 2017 portion of the schedule by outshooting the Gee-Gees 39-13 in the first-ever meeting of the two hockey programs. That Yale line combined for five of the seven goals and 11 points.
Hitchcock got things started by zipping down the right side and changing from backhand to forehand a stride before the goal-line extended. He flicked a low, off-angle shot five-hole less than a minute into the game, a rude welcome for Ottawa goalie Anthony Brodeur, the son of legendary NHL netminder Martin Brodeur.
It was a nifty play by Hitchcock, but Yale's second tally seemed even prettier. Snively sent a crossing pass toward Doherty, who was coming through the slot. The pass deflected off a defender's stick and popped up in the air. Doherty, still going full speed, knocked it to his stick using his glove, deked the goalie and then flipped it over his extended leg at 1:52.
"There were a lot of positive things from tonight's game," said Keith Allain '80, Yale's Malcolm G. Chace Head Coach. "We came out with a lot of energy, and we got everyone involved tonight."
The senior Eli was at it again in the second period with another good-looking tally. He converted a perfect Snively feed from behind the cage just 40 seconds in. Doherty's second goal of the game, a one-timer from the slot, made it 3-0. All three of goals included primary setups by Snively, who dropped a pass to the high slot for a Doherty wrister at 3:56 that increased the lead to four and gave him a natural hat trick.
"We moved him up to that line (Hitchcock, Snively) and knew he would be excited to play with those guys," said Allain.
Freshman forward Mitchell Smith also got in on the offensive party by crashing the net for a rebound that popped over the Gee-Gees' second goalie's shoulder at 5:39 to make it 5-0 in the second.
Snively padded the lead in the third by wheeling around and between Ottawa defenders in the slot before unleashing a wrister off the right post at 9:26.
Another freshman forward, Robbie DeMontis, got his name on the scoresheet late in the third period when he fired a shot off a diving defenseman's body that bounced over the shoulder of the third Ottawa goalie to produce the final margin.
The plan going in was to provide shifts for everyone on the roster, goalies included. Senior goalie Patrick Spano had the first period and made four stops. Sophomore Sam Tucker needed three to blank the Gee-Gees in the second, while Corbin Kaczperski made his debut – and five saves - in the third period. The rookie from China Township, Mich., also did not allow the visitors to find the net, but his teammate did misfire on a pass that hit a Bulldog skate and went behind him.
The Bulldogs use this exhibition game to get back into the swing of things after a long break for exams and the holidays. The next few weeks are a good time to focus on the team.
"This is a great time of year for us," said Allain. "There are no classes (until mid-January) and it's all about hockey."
Yale is back to regular-season play on Jan. 3 with Northeastern coming to the Whale for a 7 p.m. puck drop.
Sophomore forward JM Piotrowski, out with an injury the first part of the season, saw his first action of the year tonight… Former Eli forward Kenny Agostino '14, who is skating for the AHL Chicago Wolves, leads the AHL in assists and points with 26 and 35… F Mark Arcobello '10 leads the Swiss-A league with 40 points and is second in goals (20)… F Broc Little '11 tops the SHL (Sweden) in points (28).
Filed by Steve Conn, Yale Associate AD & Sports Publicity Director – firstname.lastname@example.org