HANOVER, N.H. – The Dartmouth men’s hockey team fell, 4-2, Saturday night to No. 15 Quinnipiac at Thompson Arena.
The Big Green (5-7-3, 2-4-2 ECAC Hockey) got third-period goals from freshman Cam Strong and senior Troy Crema, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the Bobcats’ (12-9-2, 7-5-1) opportunistic and timely scoring.
“Tonight was a night where a lot of things just didn’t go our way and we can’t have a game like that against a good team like Quinnipiac because they will beat us like they did,” head coach Bob Gaudet ’81 said.
“They’re a good, experienced team who countered us so well all night,” Gaudet continued. “They spread the ice really well and are solid on defense. We just couldn’t finish the chances we did work to get.”
Quinnipiac scored once in each of the first two periods on shots from Alex Whalen and Kevin Duane with the latter putting it in on a rush off the skate of a backchecking Dartmouth defender 37 seconds into the middle fram.
Just 38 seconds into the third period, Craig Martin redirected a point shot on the power play to make it a 3-0 game.
The home team answered back on a breakaway goal from Strong, his second of the weekend and team-leading seventh of the season. Sophomore Cam Roth picked up the assist by hitting Strong in stride though the neutral zone.
After a Bobcats’ empty-net goal from Kevin McKernan with 1:16 left in regulation to push the lead back to three at 4-1, Dartmouth got some positive emotion back on the bench as Crema finished a nice passing play from sophomore Alex Jasiek and senior Grant Opperman on the power play with 10.8 seconds remaining.
The Crema goal was his sixth of the season and gave the Big Green a power-play tally in all five games of the homestand.
“This was disappointing, especially given the high we were coming off of last night,” junior and team captain Carl Hesler remarked, referencing the team’s 5-0 win against Princeton on Friday. “We fell asleep for a bit tonight and they’re such a good team that they made us pay for it.”
The Big Green did outshoot Quinnipiac 39 to 29 in the game, a far cry from the 54-24 edge to the Bobcats in the November meeting between the two. Andrew Shortridge made 37 saves in the win, while Devin Buffalo took the loss with 25 stops to his credit.
Dartmouth heads out on the road to Union and Rensselaer next weekend for a pair of ECAC Hockey games.