HANOVER, N.H. - Three second-period goals from Cornell proved to be too much for the No. 17 Dartmouth men's hockey team to overcome Friday night at Thompson Arena as the Big Red skated to a 4-2 ECAC Hockey win.
The Big Green dropped to 11-9-4 overall with the loss and 7-7-3 in league play. Cornell's win snapped a seven-game slide and improved its record to 9-13-2 overall and 5-10-2 in conference games.
The Big Red used goals from Joel Lowry, Madison Dias and Greg Miller in the first 10:14 of the middle frame, including Lowry's just 49 seconds into the period to climb out to a 3-0 lead at the game's mid-way point.
Dartmouth answered back with Tyler Sikura's 10th of the season with 3:03 left to pull to his team to within two at 3-1. The sophomore center won the faceoff in the offensive zone and benefited from linemate Tim O'Brien pushing the puck ahead in the circle where he corralled it and fired a shot high over the glove of Cornell's Andy Iles.
Bligh's third goal of the season was reviewed to make sure it wasn't hit with a high stick as the rookie center was stationed just outside the goal crease. The play was deemed legal after video evidence showed Bligh's poise in waiting for the puck to drop below the crossbar before knocking it in.
In addition to Neiley,
freshman defender Geoff Ferguson was credited with an assist on the long outlet
pass to start the play.
"The growth was phenomenal. We have all these young players and tonight they became men," head coach Bob Gaudet said of the maturation he saw from his team. "They played incredibly hard and they played ferociously.
"The same game could have been 4-2 for us. We had plenty of chances to score but I liked the way our guys battled and fought. I just would have loved to have won the game," Gaudet added.
However, Cornell managed to hold on late with an empty-net goal in the final minute as John McCarron knocked in the insurance marker with 42 seconds left.
The loss was just the third of the season in 12 games played at Thompson Arena and runs the team's winless stretch to four games (0-2-2). Dartmouth has not defeated Cornell in nine straight (0-7-2) contests between the two dating back to the 2010-11 campaign.
In the last 11 played in the series between these two Ivy League foes, two have been ties, seven have been decided by one goal and twice the difference has been just two.
Both Iles and Dartmouth's Cab Morris each finished the night with 21 saves. Morris' record drops to 8-5-3 with the loss, while Iles improves to 9-13-2 as he made his 60th straight start in the Big Red net.
With 17 points in league play, the Big Green are tied for sixth, but just two points from both second and ninth in the log-jammed ECAC Hockey standings.
Dartmouth is back in action Saturday night at home against Colgate at 7 p.m.