Big Green Forces Deciding Third Game

Troy, n.y. — Eric Neiley saved the best for last Saturday night. The Dartmouth men’s hockey junior forward scored his second of the night with just 6:14 remaining in regulation to give his team a 3-2 win at Rensselaer’s Houston Field House and force a decisive Game 3 in the ECAC Hockey first-round series.

The puck drops for Game 3 tonight at 7.

The 10th-seeded Big Green (9-18-4) trailed the seventh-seeded Engineers, 1-0, in the series after RPI (15-15-6) took the opener, 4-1, Friday night. But for the second straight year, Dartmouth overcame a Game 1 misstep to force a third contest in the first round.

Neiley’s two-goal effort was his third of the season and was a crippling blow to the Engineers who had dominated much of the end of the game, looking for its first postseason series sweep at home since 2004.

The visitors dominated the opening period of play, outshooting the home club, 19-5. Despite the ice appearing to be tilted in the Green’s favor, only Neiley managed to find the back of the net, doing so with a hard wrist shot from the left circle on the power play at the 7:13 mark. Grant Opperman and Tyler Sikura picked up the helpers on Neiley’s team-leading 14th.

Sparked by the play of goaltender Scott Diebold (36 saves), the Engineers forwards came alive in the second period as Jacob Laliberte and Ryan Haggerty scored goals just 3:12 apart, sandwiched around a tally by Dartmouth junior Jesse Beamish.

Dartmouth goalie Charles Grant made 20 saves.

Men’s Basketball

Dartmouth 69, Yale 61

New Haven, Conn. — Sophomore Alex Mitola scored 29 points with five 3-pointers to lead Dartmouth to a season-ending victory Yale.

The win was the third straight for Dartmouth (12-16, 5-9 Ivy) and its first at the Bulldogs’ Lee Amphitheater in 15 years. Justin Sears led Yale (15-13, 9-5 Ivy) with 26 points.

Mitola was 9-of-15 from the floor and 5-of-10 from beyond the arc, plus drained all six of his free throws in scoring the second-most points of his career, four shy of the 33 he tallied just one week ago in a win over Cornell.

Already playing without All-Ivy center Gabas Maldunas, who was lost for the season back in January, as well as two other big men in 6-foot-7 Tommy Carpenter and 6-10 Cole Harrison because of various injuries, Dartmouth suffered another blow early in the second half when starting 6-8 forward Brandon McDonnell — who scored 11 in the first half — landed on Sears’ foot after a shot and left the game. Big Green coach Paul Cormier decided to go small for much of the rest of the game with Mitola and the 5-9 Malik Gill playing with 6-2 Tyler Melville in the backcourt, and shifting the 6-6 wing John Golden to power forward.

Women’s Lacrosse

Albany 13, Dartmouth 7

Hanover — The unbeaten Grant Danes (4-0) overcame an early lead by the Big Green (3-2) to win just the third meeting in the series between the two programs and the first since the first round of the 2011 NCAA Tournament.

Big Green sophomore Jaclyn Leto finished with a team-high three goals. Liz Calby returned after missing Wednesday’s contest with Boston University because of illness and registered a goal and Dartmouth’s lone assist against Albany. Starters Christine Lushefski and Sarah Byrne each had a goal. Byrne’s tally was the 50th point of her career.

Dartmouth senior goalkeeper Kristen Giovanniello stopped 10 shots, pushing her career total to 443, just eight shy of moving her into third place in program history.

Salem St. 11 Colby-Sawyer 10 (ot)

Salem, Mass. — Kristina Conlon scored 1:09 into the first overtime as Salem State (1-1) held off a furious comeback by Colby Sawyer (0-1) in the Chargers’ season opener.

Down 10-4, Colby-Sawyer scored six goals over the final 14 minutes to force overtime.

Track & Field

Dartmouth Competes in Boston

Boston — Several members of the Dartmouth men’s track & field team competed in the IC4A Championship Saturday afternoon at Boston University’s Track & Tennis Center.

The Big Green’s Phil Gomez ran a 1:04.87 to take 19th overall in the 500 meters. Brian Masterson was 12th overall in the 5,000 (14:36.51).

Cornell is in first place through Saturday’s events with 30 points.

The event continues today.

 The Dartmouth women sent several individuals to compete at the ECAC Championship Saturday at BU.

Kaitlin Whitehorn (60 meters) and Meggie Donovan (mile) each qualified for today’s finals with strong marks in their respective preliminary heats on this day.

In the weight throw, Cathy Liebowitz, of Plainfield, was 12th in a field 26 competitors. Her second toss of the day proved to be her best as it was measured at 54 feet, 7.25 inches.

In addition to Whitehorn and Donovan, the Big Green will also see representation in the 3,000 meters, the shot put and long jump this afternoon.

College Baseball

Colby-Sawyer Splits

Winter Haven, Fla. — Colby-Sawyer split a twin bill with Fitchburg State at the Chain of Lakes baseball complex on Saturday to open the season. Fitchburg took game one 4-3, while Colby-Sawyer won the second game 5-1. The Chargers are 1-1 and the Falcons are 2-2.

In game one, Colby-Sawyer got one run back in its last at-bat in the seventh, but left the potential tying and winning runs on base to end the game.

In game two, Colby-Sawyer received a complete game shutout from Mike Bowse, who gave up one run on four hits.

Bowse allowed a walk and a single in the second inning, but cleared the bases with a pair of pickoffs.

Nathan Frongillo had a two-run homer for the Chargers.

Boys Hockey

Bedford 6, Lebanon 0

Manchester — Lebanon (8-11-1) was shut out by undefeated Bedford (19-0) in the NHIAA Division II quarterfinals.

“I was proud of the way we played,” Raiders coach Gary Smith said. “We played hard, but Bedford’s a really good team. They’re not undefeated and a two-time defending state champ for nothing. I’m proud of the way we finished the season and how hard they fought all year.”

Lebanon won its last two games to reach the playoffs, then defeated Oyster-River in its first-round game.

Seniors Dylan Gaudette and Joe Grout played their final games for the Raiders. Grout made 28 saves in goal. The pair will participate in the New Hampshire senior all-star game on March 22 in Exeter.

H.S. Boys Basketball

Hopkinton 64, Mascoma 44

Contoocook, n.h. — Eighth-seeded Mascoma (14-8 overall 13-7 D-III) lost to top-seeded Hopkinton in the NHIAA Division III quarterfinals.

“Hopkinton used their size very effectively tonight,” Royals coach Jim Barry said.

Justin Marsh led Mascoma with 10 points, followed by Kyle Kosiorek (nine) and Alex Schwartz (eight).

The Royals trailed 14-13 after one quarter and 30-26 at halftime before the Hawks slowly pulled away.