Men’s ice hockey (15-7-3, 11-6-2 in the NESCAC) dropped NESCAC No. 7 Trinity on Saturday in the NESCAC Quarterfinals. The second-ranked Ephs dropped the Bantams 4-3 in order to advance to the semifinal round.
Williams tallied the first score in Saturday’s game. Co-captain Matt Masucci ’11 collected the puck from Connor Olvany ’11 just outside the Ephs’ offensive zone and quickly found Mark Lyons ’13. Lyons, who was waiting in front of the net, fired a shot past the Bantams’ netminder for a 1-0 score just over a minute into play.
The Ephs, however, could not hold onto their lead for long. Trinity’s Chris Menard answered Lyons’ goal under two minutes later, knotting up the game 1-1 with a score at 2:55. The 1-1 tally lasted until 15:09 into the period, when Olvany scored off a slapshot with help from Stephen Maier ’12 and Brian Malchoff ’11. The Bantams tied it up again by the end of the period, slipping one past Eph netminder Ryan Purdy ’12 with 2:20 left in the first.
Penalties plagued the men in the second: Four of the game’s five calls against the Ephs took place in the first 13 minutes of the second period. The man-down disadvantage gave Trinity’s Egor Petrov a power play look 5:10 into the period. Petrov capitalized on the opportunity to score, boosting his team up 3-2.
The Ephs remained down nearly 10 minutes into the third period, until Eric Rubino ’13 was finally able to pull the men even with the Bantams. Ben Contini ’12 was originally charging to the net, but was deterred by the Bantam defense. Rubino took control of the loose puck, rifling it into the back to of the net for a 3-3 tie with 10:11 left in the game.
As each team continued to rebuff the other’s scoring attempts as time wound down, it appeared the game was headed to overtime. John Wickman ’13, however, pushed the Ephs over the Bantams with a goal at 16:43. Contini attempted another shot that was stopped by Trinity’s defense, but Wickman found the rebound and redirected it into the net for a 4-3 tally. The Bantams were unable to mount a response in the remaining 3:17, and time expired to grant the Ephs the win.
“It was a real team effort in the third period,” Head Coach Bill Kangas said. “In a playoff game, both teams are going to get chances, and I thought we responded real well in the third period. We played some real good hockey on both ends of the rink, both offensively and defensively.”
Purdy was key in the Ephs’ win, notching 33 saves, 11 in the third period alone.
“Ryan played well in goal,” Kangas said. “He made some really great saves. The fourth goal we made, he made the save that led the rush to the goal.”
Williams will continue its postseason against Wesleyan, who upset top-seeded Hamilton on Saturday. As the highest remaining seed in the tournament, the men will host the next two rounds of the NESCAC tournament at the Lansing Chapman rink. The Ephs will challenge the Cardinals at 1 p.m. on Saturday, and Colby and Bowdoin will face off at 4 p.m. to complete the semifinal round of play. The respective winners will then compete in the title game at 2 p.m. on Sunday.
“Most importantly, the guys realized that we need a good effort. We needed to have a great [third] period [on Saturday] and we were able to do that,” Kangas said. “[Now] we’re just looking forward to hosting the final four.”