Yale Comeback Falls Short at Hamden

Evan Smith's 2nd Period Goal Cut the Margin to One (Jack Warhola image)
Evan Smith's 2nd Period Goal Cut the Margin to One (Jack Warhola image)

Elis Still Clinch Home Ice Next Week

HAMDEN, Conn. – Spotting the home team a three-goal lead in the first period was too much for Yale to overcome in a 3-2 loss to Quinnipiac before a sold out crowd at High Point Solutions Arena on the second-to-last day of the regular season.

The Bobcats had a 33-21 edge in shots and converted two of six advantages. The Bulldogs (11-12-5, 7-10-4 ECAC), who titled the ice more their way over the last 40 minutes, remained in seventh place, two points ahead of Dartmouth, which means Yale will host a first-round conference playoff series next weekend.

The Elis were outshot 14-6 in the first period and found themselves down 3-0 - primarily thanks to a pair of early Yale penalties - heading into the first intermission. Andrew Gaus had the only grade-A scoring chance when he sprinted in over the blueline a step ahead of the defense and tried to tuck a backhander that was stopped by Andrew Shortridge.

The second period was very different story. The Bulldogs, who weathered some close calls on the defensive end, came out with confidence and grit and cut the margin to one goal.

The visitors broke through 21 seconds into the period when Frankie DiChiara dumped the puck into the Bobcat end. Joe Snively won the race to it behind the net and used the eyes attached to the back of his helmet to see John Hayden open in the top of the right circle. Snively's backhanded pass was in the perfect spot for the senior captain to one-time it inside the opposite post for his 19th of the year.

Sam Tucker made 11 saves in the first and stopped all eight shots in the second to help the Elis climb back into the game. After QU scored on both power plays in the opening frame, the sophomore goalie blanked the Cats on both advantages in the second. He added two more great saves on a third-period power play.

A senior got Yale's first of the night; a rookie notched the second. Evan Smith, who took a great pass from Gaus, skated in alone on the home net before flicking a shot off Shortridge's pads. The rebound bounced out to Smith (4th goal), who kicked it to his stick and flipped it over the QU goalie with 1: 29 left in the middle frame.

Most of the play in the third period was in the Yale end, partly due to penalties. That play included an excellent Tucker poke check on a Tanner MacMaster breakaway with just over five minutes left. The Wilton, Conn., native finished with 30 saves.

The Bobcats ended up having an 11-6 advantage in shots in the third. Four of the shots came on two advantages.

Tucker was pulled for an extra skater with 43 seconds left, but there just wasn't enough time to get more pressure on the QU net.

The Bulldogs, who can finish as the No. 7 or 8 seed in the ECAC playoffs, complete the regular season by skating at Princeton Saturday night at 7.

 
Here's the latest breakdown for the last day of the regular season and the conference tournament:

Union (33 points, at Cornell Saturday) -
Seeded #1 with a win.
Seeded #1 with a loss or tie and a Harvard loss or tie.
Seeded #2 with a loss or tie and a Harvard win.

Harvard (32 points, vs St. Lawrence) -
Seeded #1 with a win and a Union loss or tie.
Seeded #2 with a win and a Union win.
Seeded #2 with a loss or tie.

Cornell (30 points, vs Union) -
Seeded #3.

St. Lawrence (28 points, at Harvard) -
Seeded #4.

Quinnipiac (25 points, vs Brown) -
Seeded #5 (vs #12 Brown).

Clarkson (21 points, at Dartmouth) -
Seeded #6 (vs #11 Rensselaer).

Yale (18 points, at Princeton) -
Seeded #7 with a win or a tie.
Seeded #8 with a loss.

Princeton (17 points, vs Yale) -
Seeded #7 with a win.
Seeded #8 with a tie and a Dartmouth loss or tie.
Seeded #8 with a loss, a Dartmouth loss, and a Colgate loss or tie.
Seeded #9 with a tie and a Dartmouth win.
Seeded #9 with a loss, a Dartmouth loss, and Colgate win.
Seeded #9 with a loss, a Dartmouth win or tie, and a Colgate loss or tie.
Seeded #10 with a loss, a Dartmouth win or tie, and a Colgate win.

Dartmouth (16 points, vs Clarkson) -
Seeded #8 with a win and a Princeton loss or tie.
Seeded #8 with a tie and a Princeton loss.
Seeded #9 with a win and a Princeton win.
Seeded #9 with a tie and a Princeton win or tie.
Seeded #9 with a loss and a Colgate loss or tie.
Seeded #10 with a loss and a Colgate win.

Colgate (15 points, vs Rensselaer) -
Seeded #8 with a win, a Princeton loss, and a Dartmouth loss.
Seeded #9 with a win, a Princeton win or tie, and a Dartmouth loss.
Seeded #9 with a win, a Princeton loss, and a Dartmouth win or tie.
Seeded #10 with a win, a Princeton win or tie, and a Dartmouth win or tie.
Seeded #10 with a loss or a tie.

Rensselaer (10 points, at Colgate) -
Seeded #11 (at #6 Clarkson).

Brown (7 points, at Quinnipiac) -
Seeded #12 (at #5 Quinnipiac)

 

Filed by Steve Conn, Yale Associate AD & Sports Publicity Director – steven.conn@yale.edu