Bears Hit the Road for ECAC Hockey Games at #9 Union and RPI
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This Weekend: The Bears travel to New York's Capital District this weekend to face #9 Union and RPI in their final full League weekend of the semester. Following Saturday's contest at RPI, the Bears have a full week off, before resuming play at Army on Saturday, November 19th, a game that kicks off a stretch of three non-league games in the span of seven days. Brown closes the semester with a Thursday/Saturday home-and-home with travel-partner Yale. Brown's next full Friday-Saturday ECAC Hockey weekend is not until January 6-7 when the Bears host Princeton and Quinnipiac. This weekend against Union and Rensselaer, Brown will look to build upon its 2-2-0 record after posting splits in each of its first two weekends. Both weekends, the Bears lost on Friday and rebounded with a win on Saturday night.
Last Time Out: The Bears posted a weekend split with Colgate (L, 5-3) and Cornell (W, 5-4) in their home opening weekend. On Friday night against the Raiders, Brown held a 2-1 lead early in the second period on back-to-back power play goals by senior Jack Maclellan and freshman Massimo Lamacchia. However, two straight goals by Colgate gave the Raiders a 3-2 lead at the end of two periods. Junior Jeff Ryan's first career goal at 6:25 of the third period tied the game at 3-3, but Austin Smith scored his second short-handed goal of the game nine minutes later to break the tie and the Raiders tallied an empty net goal with five second left. Senior Mike Clemente recorded 20 saves. On Saturday night Brown went up, 2-0, on the first career goal for junior Richie Crowley and senior Bobby Farnham's first of the year at the 11:54 mark. Cornell would score three straight goals to take a 3-2 lead midway through the second, but sophomore Matt Wahl's first of the year tied the score at 3-3 at the 15:15 mark of the middle period. Cornell scored a short-handed goal, the third given up by Brown on the weekend, with 2:08 left in the period to lead 4-3 after 40 minutes. However, a pair of Brown freshmen, Lamacchia and Ryan Jacobson erased the lead and lifted Brown to the win by scoring goals just 79 seconds apart midway through the third to account for the 5-4 final. Clemente finished with 16 saves.
Brown vs. Union: This weekend marks the 42nd meeting between Brown and Union, dating back to a 3-2 Union victory on December 30, 1989. The Bears hold a 19-12-10 series advantage over the Dutchmen, including a 7-5-5 record in the past 17 meetings. However, Union has gone 2-0-2 in the last four meetings, sweeping the series last year and earning a pair of ties in 2009-10. Since the 2008-09 season, when the current seniors were freshmen, Brown holds a 1-3-2 record. Brown's last win over Union was in December, 2008 (5-4). Senior Jack Maclellan is Brown's statistical leader against Union with 5-2-7 totals in six career games, while seniors Jeff Buvinow and Jarred Smith both have three assists in six career games.
Scouting Union: Currently the highest-ranked ECAC Hockey team in the National Polls at #9, Union enters the weekend riding a three-game winning sreak with victories over AIC (5-2), St. Lawrence (2-0) and Clarkson (3-1). The only blemish on the Dutchmen's schedule is a 2-1 overtime loss to New Hampshire on October 28th, as Union went 2-0-3 in its first five games of the year. Senior Kelly Zajac currently leads the Dutchmen with 14 points (2g, 12a) in nine games, while sophomore Mat Bodie adds 10 points (2g, 8a) in nine games. Juniors Wayne Simpson and Jeremy Welsh lead the team with six goals each, while Welsh's five power play goals and Simpson's two game-winners pace the team. 15 other players have earned at least one point so far this year. Sophomore Troy Grosenick has seen the majority of time in net for Union and has earned a 1.24 GAA and .949 save percentage with a 4-1-2 record.
Brown vs. Rensselaer: This weekend will mark the 82nd meeting between Brown and RPI, dating back to a 5-0 Brown win during the 1951-52 season. The Engineers currently lead the all-time series, 53-21-7, including a season sweep last year with a 6-2 win in Providence and a 3-0 win in Troy. The two teams split the regular season in 2009-10, with each team winning in its own rink. The Bears then faced RPI in the first round of the playoffs, eliminating the 6th-seeded Engineers in three games with wins in game #1 and game #3. The split during the regular season marked the first time in four seasons that Brown earned a win over RPI in the regular season, as the Engineers were 7-0-1 from January 2006 through February 2009, including sweeping the season in 2006, 2007, and 2009. Seniors Jack Maclellan (4g, 2a) and Bobby Farnham (2g, 4a) are Brown's statistical leaders against RPI with six points (2g, 4a) in nine and eight career games, respectively. Classmate Jeff Buvinow has six points, all assists, in nine career games against the Engineers.
Scouting Rensselaer: The Engineers enter the Yale-Brown weekend having dropped seven straight games, while getting outscored 25-5 during this time. RPI posted a split with Minnesota State (L, 1-0; W, 4-1) to open the season. Last weekend at Clarkson and St. Lawrence, RPI dropped a 4-1 decision to the Golden Knights and a 2-0 decision to the Saints. Junior Nick Bailen and freshman Ryan Haggerty share the lead for points with 3 (1g, 2a) in nine games, while senior Joel Malchuk leads the team with two goals. Bailen and Haggerty join sophomore Pat Koudys with one power play goal each to lead the team, while Bailen had the game-winner against Minnesota State. Junior Bryce Merriam has seen the majority of time in net this year and has posted a 2.32 GAA with a .919 save percentage and a 1-6-0 record.
Pictured: Matt Wahl '14. Photo by DSPics.net.