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Disciplined Cornell Puts Halt to Dartmouth’s Momentum

  • Cornell University goaltender Matthew Galajda peers between Dartmouth's Corey Kalk (18) and Matt Baker (14) during Saturday's ECAC game at Thompson Arena. The No. 2 Big Red won, 3-1. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. Purchase a reprint »

  • Dartmouth College wing Corey Kalk speaks with game officials Saturday during an ECAC clash with No. 2 Cornell. The Big Red won, 3-1, at Thompson Arena. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. Purchase a reprint »

  • Dartmouth College defenseman Tim Shoup is congratulated by teammates Collin Rutherford (9) and Connor Yau (6) on Saturday after scoring his second goal in as many games. The Big Green lost to No. 2 Cornell, 3-1, at Thompson Arena. (Valley News - Tris Wykes) Copyright Valley News. May not be reprinted or used online without permission. Send requests to permission@vnews.com. Purchase a reprint »



Valley News Staff Writer
Sunday, January 28, 2018

Hanover — Cornell University men’s hockey players in suits and with gear bags slung over their shoulders lumbered through Thompson Arena’s bowels late Saturday night. One carried with him a wood-handled sledgehammer, presumably a physical reminder for the No. 2 Big Red to pound away at the opposition, which it did in a 3-1 win over Dartmouth.

Backed by a blaring 30-member pep band and a couple of hundred red-clad fans, Cornell relentlessly compressed the hosts’ time and space. Dartmouth held a 28-19 shots advantage and coach Bob Gaudet said he thought the Big Green outplayed the visitors, but the Big Red is a consummate team in every sense of the word.

“I think they have a real chance at winning a national championship,” said Gaudet, whose squad entered the game 7-2-1 in its last 10 contests. “That’s going to be the No. 1 team in the country this week, but they’re not a fancy team. They would rather play in the corners than in open ice, and they protect their goalie very well.”

Cornell blocked 18 shots to Dartmouth’s 10. The Big Green took 10 of the third period’s 14 shots, but the Big Red improved to 16-1 when scoring a game’s first goal. The hosts were scoreless in four power-play chances against Cornell goaltender Matthew Galajda, who has surrendered just two goals in his last five games and began Saturday leading NCAA Division I backstops in goals-against average.

“They’re a really good team from top to bottom, but I feel very good about our effort,” Gaudet said. “There’s not much margin for error in this league. You’re tested with fire.”

Gaudet noted that Dartmouth is one of the youngest teams in the country, featuring 17 underclassmen on a 28-man roster. Despite being that callow, the Big Green is also disciplined, committing just six penalties in its last four games.

Cornell, 18-2-1 overall, 12-1-1 in ECAC play and atop the conference standings, opened Saturday’s scoring in the third minute. Yanni Kaldis cut across the top of the left circle towards the sideboards and whipped a pass to an unguarded Cam Donaldson at the back door.

Dartmouth answered five minutes later with defenseman Tim Shoup’s one-time goal from the top of the left circle. However, Cornell won a faceoff in the hosts’ end midway through the second period and with the teams skating four aside. The puck was moved quickly around the right side and Anthony Angelio, standing alone in the slot, fired an almost point-blank shot past goaltender Devin Buffalo. The senior finished with 16 saves.

Gaudet pulled his netminder for an extra skater with 1:45 showing on the clock, but Noah Bauld got past defender Brendan Less with a nifty toe-drag move in the right circle and scored into the unattended cage.

Dartmouth is tied with Colgate for fifth place in the ECAC, dropping to 9-11-2 overall and 7-7-1 in conference action.

The Big Green is next in action Friday against visiting Harvard, which includes U.S. Olympic team member Ryan Donato.

Notes: Gaudet has 298 victories at Dartmouth, trailing only leader Eddie Jeremiah (308). The Big Green has seven regular season games remaining, plus a minimum of two in the playoffs. … Dartmouth’s scratches included injured captain Kevan Kilistoff, who didn’t play for a second consecutive game. Gaudet said he hopes the senior can return in a few weeks. Also out is injured John Ernsting, a junior who has missed 10 of the last 11 games. … Shoup, a senior who had goals in back-to-back games for the first time in his career, on Saturday became the 100th Dartmouth player to play 100 games. … Matt Baker and Alex Jasiek had six-game point streaks snapped. … Cornell won the teams’ previous meeting this season, 3-0 in Ithaca, N.Y. … The Big Red leads the teams’ all-time series, 82-48-6. … Cornell dressed 10 Canadians while Dartmouth suited up five. ... Dartmouth is sixth nationally in penalty killing, at 91.3 percent during the last 10 games. The Big Green is third in blocked shots with 144 during that same stretch and is averaging 14.6 blocks per game this season, with is seventh nationally. … Dartmouth is averaging the second-fewest penalty minutes per game in Division I at 8.18.

Tris Wykes can be reached at twykes@vnews.com or 603-727-3227.