In what turned out to be a very difficult week, the Williams Men’s Ice Hockey team dropped two of three games to Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) and more importantly to division rival Hamilton. This drops Williams to 3-2, and a hold on second place in NESCAC play.
The Ephs lost their first home game on Saturday November 29 to the Rochester Institute of Technology, 3-2. Going into the game, RIT was ranked first in the NCAA for Division III and Williams was ranked sixth. This brought the Ephs’ record to 2-1-0, while RIT’s record improved to 7-0-0. “I knew coming into this game it could go either way, “ Williams’ head coach Bill Kangas said, “and it really was a 50/50 game the whole way through. I was very pleased with the way we played.”
RIT started off the scoring 8:04 into the game as Lanner Fayad received the puck at the blue line, skated past a defender and beat Dave Haimson ’00 in goal with a shot to the far post. Williams answered with a power play goal less than a minute later as David Carrillo ’00 popped the puck through several players camped out in front of the net. He was assisted by Jon Collins ’99.
Both teams went on to score once more in the first period. Williams scored at the 10:37 mark as Co-captain Jeff Russell ’99 received the puck at the blue line and skated past two defenders before beating the goalie one-on-one. He was assisted by Collins and Rob Hodge ’00. RIT’s goal came 17:53 into the game when Steve Fukes scored assisted by Peter Bournazakis. The second period went scoreless.
The game-winner came 1:29 into the third period when Peter Bournazakis played the puck from behind the net to Luke Murphy, who one-timed it into the far corner. The Ephs nearly tied it up with only a few minutes to go with a shot that hit the post.
The Ephs rebounded from their loss to RIT on Friday December 4 to defeat Skidmore College 3-1. The Ephs struck quickly in the first period, as Alex Garceau ’02 scored at the 1:34 mark in the first, assisted by Stephen Owen ’01 and Eric Demment ’01. Less than a minute later, 2:32 into the first, Carrillo added another goal, assisted by Ryan Crisp ’01 and Hodge.
After a scoreless second period for both teams, Skidmore scored its first goal at the 8:42 mark in the third. Skidmore, however, was unable to tie the game as the Eph defense held back a number of their shots and finally put the game out of reach with a goal 15:35 into the third, scored by Joe Butler ’01 from Russell and Yvon Hopps ’02. Haimson was strong throughout the game in goal, saving 21 of the 22 shots he faced.
The team finished the week on a sour note as they received their second loss on Saturday at Hamilton College by a score of 6-2. This brings Williams’ record to 3-2- 0, while Hamilton’s record improved to 2-2-1.
The Ephs came out flat from the start, falling behind 3-0 in the first period. The Continentals then went on to score the first two goals of the second period to put them up 5-0.
Williams answered with two goals, the first coming 31:18 into the game as Collins scored assisted by Butler, and the second coming 35:17 into the game as forward Chad Ogiba ’00 scored assisted by Andrew Beasley ’02. This put the score at 5-2 going into the third period.
At 53:51 into the game, Hamilton’s Rob Rigg scored his second goal of the game, bringing the final score to 6-2. In the goal for the Ephs was Haimson (38 shots, 32 saves) and in the goal for Hamilton was Brent Davey (20 shots, 18 saves).
Although this was a devastating week for the club, they will look to rebound Tuesday at AIC, and then at home on Friday night against Massachusetts College at 7:30. It is imperative that the team goes into winter break a solid 5-2, as a good morale and high confidence levels will be important when the grueling stretch of 17 games in a little less than two months begins January.