PROVIDENCE, RI – Sophomore Matt Harlow (Bridgewater, MA) led four different Brown goal scorers as the men's hockey team (11-12-6, 7-9-6) earned a 5-1 win over visiting Colgate (14-16-4, 6-13-3) on Saturday afternoon at Meehan Auditorium. The two points were critical for the Bears, who took care of themselves to stay alive in the hunt for home ice and then got the help they needed in the 7:00 games.
Brown, which was picked to finish last in the 12-team conference, ends the regular season in 7th place, its highest finished since a sixth-place finish in 2005. The Bears will host 10th-place Clarkson in a best-of-three series next weekend with games slated to begin at 7:00 on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, if needed. Tickets will go on sale on Monday, March 4, at 12:00 noon and can be purchased either online or over the phone at 401-863-2773. Tickets are $12 for adults and $6 for Brown students.
The 11-12-6 mark during the regular season is Brown's best record since 2004-05. That season, the Bears were 14-12-3 and was the last time that Brown had 12 or fewer losses during the regular season. It was also the last time that the team hosted a home playoff series.
"I actually thought we played better against Cornell," said head coach Brendan Whittet '94. "I thought Anthony played very well tonight. They were buzzing … they had a lot of energy. I thought we were on our heels a little bit. But again, we did what we needed to do and it was nice to get some puck luck, which we created, but we had some seeing-eye shots, things were going in.
"We chip away, we do some really good things. It's a tribute to the guys. To get that win; to have 11 wins on the season; I am more impressed that we only lost 12 games out of 29. We did a lot of good things. Guys really, really stuck together. They came together, they played with a lot of heart and they battled for each other. That's all you can ask."
The Bears came out flying and nearly grabbed a 1-0 less than five minutes in, but junior Jimmy Siers' (Mt. Prospect, IL) shot from the right side of the crease ricocheted off the near post with Colgate's Spencer Finney still on the other side of the goal.
However, sophomore leading scorer Matt Lorito (Oakville, Ontario) put Brown up, 1-0, at 11:09 with his 15th goal of the year. Junior Matt Wahl (Wellington, FL) started the play when he fired a blast from the right point that got through traffic in front. Freshman Nick Lappin (Geneva, IL) deflected it over to Lorito at the left side of the crease and Lorito fired it past Finney for the game's first goal.
The Raiders tied the score at 1-1 with just 55 seconds left in the period when Jeremy Price connected on Colgate's first power play of the game. After colleting the puck from Tyson Spink, Price sent a hard shot towards the goal from the left point, beating senior Anthony Borelli (Grand Island, NY) glove-side high.
Colgate dominated the first part of the second period, maintaining possession for several long stretches. However, Borelli and the rest of the Brown defense weathered the storm and, on one of the few offensive chances of the frame, junior Mark Hourihan (Lynnfield, MA) broke the 1-1 tie with his second of the year. Senior Richie Crowley (Canton, MA) sent a slap shot on goal from the left point, which Finney saved. However, the rebound went right to Hourihan, and he fired it behind Finney from the right side. Harlow also earned an assist on the goal, which seemed to ignite the Bears' offense.
Lorito and Lappin both had great chances to extend the Bears' lead in the minutes following Hourihan's goal. Harlow did eventually give Brown a 3-1 lead, scoring on a shot from the blueline that seemed to catch Finney by surprise, banking off the left post and in at 13:21. Lappin and Hourihan both earned their second points of the night with assists on the goal.
The Bears continued to find seams in the Colgate defense, as sophomore Joey de Concilys (St. Catharine's, Ontario) hit the near post on a blast from the left side just 3:15 into the third period. A minute later, junior Michael Juola (Lake Forest, CA) got on the score sheet when his shot from the left faceoff circle deflected off Finney, popped up and over him, and into the back of the net, giving Brown a 4-1 lead just 4:28 into the third. Senior Chris Zaires (Aberdeen, NJ) and Wahl both assisted the goal, which chased Finney from the game in favor of Eric Mihalik.
Harlow scored the final goal of the night just 4:04 after Juola's goal, converting Brown's first power play chance of the game. Zaires started the play when he passed from the left half wall up to junior Jake Goldberg (Langhorne, PA) on the right point. Goldberg fired a shot on goal that Mihalik saved but could not cover, and Harlow finally slipped the puck past him on what was the third attempt with a crowd in front.
Borelli was strong in net, stopping 33 of 34 shots, including a short-handed breakaway by Joe Wilson midway through the third period, holding the advantage at four goals.
For the game, Colgate outshot Brown, 34-27. Both teams scored one power play goal, as the Raiders were 1-3 and the Bears were 1-2.
In a ceremony prior to the game, the Bears recognized the six members of the class of 2013 – Anthony Borelli, Richie Crowley, Francis Drolet, Jeff Ryan, Marc Senecal, and Chris Zaires – along with their family members who were able to come to Providence.
The Bears will host Clarkson in next weekend's best-of-three First Round Series, beginning Friday, March 8, at 7:00 p.m.
COLGATE 1 0 0 x - 1
BROWN 1 2 2 x - 5
First period – B, Lorito (Lappin, Wahl), 11:09; C, Price (Tyson Spink), 19:05. Penalties – C, 0-0; B, 1-2.
Second period – B, Hourihan (Crowley, Harlow), 8:54; B, Harlow (Lappin, Hourihan), 13:21. Penalties – C, 0-0; B, 1-2.
Third Period – B, Juola (Zaires, Wahl), 4:28; B, Harlow (Goldberg, Zaires), PP, 8:32. Penalties – C, 2-4; B, 1-2.
C, Finney (44:28), 6-7-2-x – 15; C, Mihalik (15:32), x-x-7-x – 7; B, Borelli (60:00), 11-11-11-x – 33.
Pictured: Matt Harlow '15 had three points (2g, 1a) in Brown's 5-1 win over Colgate. Photo by DSPics.net.