No. 9 Dartmouth at No. 2 Cornell
Game 1 (32) - Friday, March 9, 2012 - 7 p.m.
Game 2 (33) - Saturday, March 10, 2012 - 7 p.m.

Game 3 (34)* - Sunday, March 11, 2012 - 7 p.m.
Dartmouth Big Green (13-14-4) vs.
No. 13/13 Cornell Big Red (15-7-7)
Location:
Ithaca, N.Y. - Lynah Rink (3,200)
All-Time Series:
Cornell, 75-43-17
First Meeting:
Feb. 5 1909 - Home - W, 1-0
Last Meeting:
Jan. 20, 2012 - L, 4-3 (OT) (Road)
Streak:
Cornell, 4-0-1
Last Dartmouth Win:
Feb. 20, 2010 - 5-4 (Home)
* - If Necessary

All-Time ECAC Hockey Tournament Action vs. Cornell (1-4)
In Ithaca:
1-2              First Round: 1-2
In Hanover:
0-0           Semifinals: 0-1
Neutral Site:
0-2          Consolation: 0-1

Broadcast Information:
Radio:
WFRD 99.3 FM Play-by-Play: Chris Garrett
In-Game Updates:
On Twitter - @Dartmouth_MIH

Dartmouth NotesCornell Notes
Cornell PreviewLive StatsLive VideoLive Audio


HANOVER, N.H. - It's a new weekend for the Dartmouth men's hockey team. It's new thanks to a first-round victory over St. Lawrence last weekend that allowed the team to move on to face second-seeded Cornell in Ithaca.

The ninth-seeded Big Green did what many said they couldn't do: win on the road against a Saints team that had knocked them out of contention for home-ice just six days before.

However, stellar play from goaltender Jody O'Neill (Nepean, Ontario) and the collective group effort of all four forward lines and three defensive pairs translated to Dartmouth's first-ever postseason road-series.

Their reward? How about a date with the Big Red in the ECAC Hockey Championship Quarterfinals with a berth in the semis in Atlantic City on the line?

Think that's enough motivation? How about when you also add into the equation this is a team that knocked Dartmouth out of the playoffs a year ago with a 3-0 win in the semifinals in Boardwalk Hall?

There is a lot on the line for both teams this weekend in loud, historic Lynah Rink.

Like last weekend demonstrated, postseason hockey is a different beast where anything can happen.


GAME NOTES

THIS WEEKEND
Ninth-seeded Dartmouth heads to Lynah Rink to take on second-seeded Cornell in the 2012 ECAC Hockey Championship Quarterfinals. This round, like the first, is a best-of-three series that will feature a Game 3, if necessary, on Sunday night with Games 1 and 2 set for Friday and Saturday. All three games will begin at 7 p.m.

HOW'D THEY GET HERE?
The Big Green finished the regular season with a 3-1 loss to St. Lawrence at Thompson Arena on Saturday, Feb. 25. The win gave the Saints the eighth seed and home-ice advantage in the first-round series last weekend. Dartmouth made its second trip of the year to Canton and came out with a two-game sweep of St. Lawrence to advance to the league's quarterfinal round.

THAT'S NEW
Prior to the weekend sweep of the Saints, Dartmouth had not won a road playoff series (0-4) in program history. On the flip side, it had been 16 seasons since St. Lawrence had lost a playoff series in Appleton Arena and had never been swept in a best-of-three weekend in its home barn.

WEEKLY ACCOLADE
Senior goaltender Jody O'Neill (Nepean, Ontario) was honored as the ECAC Hockey Goaltender of the Week for his outstanding play in net against the Saints. O'Neill was a major reason the Big Green were able to go on the road and take back-to-back games from the Saints as he had consecutive nights of 30 or more saves to earn the two wins.

  • O'Neill had never been named the league's top weekly goaltender, despite the fact that he earned the ECAC Hockey and Ivy League Rookie of the Year honors as a freshman in 2008-09.

SPEAKING OF JODY
O'Neill stopped 68 of 72 shots he faced over the weekend, earning his second and third wins of the season at Appleton Arena. He won the first road game of the season, 3-1, at SLU on Nov. 18.

  • This was the second time this season that O'Neill had back-to-back games of 30-plus saves. The senior stopped 36 at Princeton (Feb. 2) and a season-high 38 saves at Quinnipiac (Feb. 3).
  • O'Neill had 30 saves in the opener and 38 on Saturday night, including 30 in the final two periods.

THIRSTY FOR 30
The last Dartmouth goaltender to record back-to-back 30-save performances in a single postseason series was Mike Devine '08 in Games 1 and 2 against Cornell in the first round of the 2008 ECAC Hockey Championship.

  • Devine stopped 31 shots in the opener, before making 40 saves in the 5-3 Game 2 victory.

WINNER WINNER CHICKEN DINNER
Freshman Eric Neiley (Warminster, Pa.) scored his second game-winning goal of the season to break a 3-3 tie in the final frame of Game 1. Neiley's goal came with 8:45 left in regulation and sparked a late-game push by the Big Green that eventually built the lead to three in the waning minutes. Neiley's first GWG of his career came back on Dec. 11 in a 4-1 victory over non-conference Sacred Heart at Thompson.

NICE LINE
The line of Neiley, sophomore Matt Lindblad (Winnetka, Ill.) and freshman Tyler Sikura (Aurora, Ontario) combined for eight points (3g/5a) this weekend, including both game winners. Lindblad's two goals in the series marked the first time this season that the sophomore found the back of the net in consecutive games.

NEWCOMERS COME LATELY
Dartmouth's freshman class had nine points in Canton (2g/7a); more than any other of the team's classes. Those freshmen combined to lead the league with 25 goals against conference opponents during the regular season. Their 61 points during those 22 league games were also nearly 24 points higher than the league average of 37.33 by the 12 freshman classes.

PERFECT TIMING
Freshman defenseman Andy Simpson (Chesterfield, Mo.) picked the perfect time to score his first career goal, doing so 4:27 into Game 2 to give the Big Green the early 1-0 lead. Simpson was one of Dartmouth's league-best seven first-year players to register a point this season, but did not score a goal during 12 regular season contests and the first postseason game of his career.

ABOUT CORNELL
The Big Red earned the second seed in the league's postseason and a bye into the quarterfinals with 30 points and a 12-4-6 record (15-7-7 overall) in 2011-12. The team had an opportunity to win the Clearly Cup as the league's regular season champion with a win over Union on the final Friday of the year, pulling even with the Dutchmen in the standings. But a defeat at the hands of RPI in the season finale coupled with a Union win cost the Big Red the chance at the trophy and the top seed. Greg Miller leads the team with 26 points (14g/12a), while Ivy League Rookie of the Year Brian Ferlin and Sean Collins each have 21 points for second.

  • They enter the weekend ranked No. 13 in both the USCHO.com and USA Today Polls and are tied for 14th in the PairWise Rankings (the system used to predict the NCAA Tournament field).

NORTH COUNTRY SWEEP
The Big Green's series win over the Saints was the only sweep of four first-round series played last weekend. The consecutive wins also marked the first time that Dartmouth swept a road weekend since last season when the team went to Clarkson and St. Lawrence and came away with convincing 7-1 and 6-1 victories on Nov. 12-13, 2010.

DOUGIE FRESH
Senior Doug Jones (Marietta, Ga.) scored twice in the first round to push his current point streak to six games (4g/4a). Both were third-period markers and gave his team leads of 3-2 (Friday) and 3-1 (Saturday).

  • Jones now has 107 career points (29g/78a) to rank tied for 23rd all-time at Dartmouth. His 78 assists have him eighth all-time.
  • With goals in consecutive games, Jones has now scored in two or more straight games four times this season. His longest streak of four games began at Vermont (Nov. 27) and continued through the Ledyard Classic Championship against St. Lawrence (Dec. 31).

PENALTY KILL PROWESS
Maligned much of the season, the Dartmouth penalty kill stepped up in a big way against the Saints. The Big Green PK unit was 10-for-10 over the two games, including holding the home team to an 0-for-6 showing with the man-advantage on Friday night.

  • Dartmouth's penalty kill was the only unit in the league to not surrender a power-play goal during the first round of action.

CAN'T ASK FOR MORE WHEN THE TEAM SCORES FOUR
Dartmouth is 10-1 this season when scoring four or more goals in a game. Four of the last five games have seen the Big Green light the lamp at least four times, all wins.

AN APPLETON A DAY HELPS KEENAN'S PLAY
Junior defenseman and team captain Mike Keenan (South Weymouth, Mass.) set a new career high with three assists in Friday's game, including a helper on Neiley's game winner.

  • Keenan's three-point night matched his career high set at Appleton Arena on Nov. 12, 2010 as the then-sophomore scored his first career goal and assisted on two others.

BOOKENDS
Senior Nick Walsh (Shannonville, Ontario) scored the first goal of the weekend, 19:08 into the first period Friday night. His empty netter 19:03 into the third period on Saturday sealed the win for the Big Green by pushing the lead to three, 4-1. Walsh finished tied for the team lead in points (2g/1a) in the two games.

TAKE THE LEAD AFTER 20
Dartmouth is 9-1 this season when leading after the first period. That figure continued to ring true last weekend as the Big Green took leads of 1-0 and 2-0 into the dressing room after 20 minutes in Games 1 and 2.

ROOKIE OF THE MONTH
Brandon McNally (Saugus, Mass.) was named the ECAC Hockey Rookie of the Month for February as voted on by representatives from around the league. McNally scored six goals in the final six games of the season for Dartmouth, including a two-goal game against Clarkson. That stretch helped the first-year wing finish the regular season as the conference's leader in goals scored by a freshman this season with all 10 of his markers coming against ECAC Hockey foes.

TIED THROUGH TWO
The Big Green and Saints were knotted at two apiece through 40 minutes of play in Game 1 before the visitors exploded with four goals in the final frame. It marked the team's first win of the season when tied after two periods (1-3-2).

AGAINST THE BIG RED
Dartmouth dropped two one-goal games to Cornell this season. The Big Red came into Thompson on Nov. 12 and narrowly edged the home team, 3-2. In the one game played in Ithaca between the two teams with large colorful names on Jan. 20, Cornell once again bested Dartmouth, doing so this time in overtime, 4-3, on a power-play tally 2:05 into the extra session.

  • These two teams have only played once before in series play, a first-round meeting in 2008 that Cornell won in a decisive third game.
  • They have also played once each in the Championship (1980) and Semifinals (2011), both Big Red victories.

FIRST ROUND
Home                 Road           Overall
   4-5                    2-4                  6-9

QUARTERFINALS
Home                 Road           Overall
               
16-3                      1-7               17-10

 SEMIFINALS       FINALS     3rd PLACE

   2-6                    0-2                  3-3

IN SERIES PLAY: 9-5
Home: 8-1
Away: 1-4 

Game 1's: 7-7
Game 2's:
10-4
Game 3's:
4-3

OVERALL: 29-31

Home: 18-7
Away: 5-12
Neutral: 6-12
Higher Seed: 23-12
Lower Seed: 6-19


OVERTIME: 4-9
Home:  3-4                Road: 0-4            Neutral: 1-1     
Higher Seed: 4-4        Lower Seed: 0-5
Multiple OTs: 1-2

NOTE: All figures reflect current postseason and all semifinal, finals and third-place games are played at neutral sites


Dartmouth Against Cornell in ECAC Hockey Tournament Play
1980

CHAMPIONSHIP

Loss - Cornell 5, Dartmouth 1 (Boston, Mass. - Boston Garden)

2008
FIRST ROUND

No. 12 Dartmouth at No. 5 Cornell

Loss - Cornell 3, Dartmouth 2
Win - Dartmouth 5, Cornell 3

Loss - Cornell 6, Dartmouth 0

2011
SEMIFINALS

Loss - No. 4 Cornell 3, No. 3 Dartmouth 0 (Atlantic City, N.J. - Boardwalk Hall)


DARTMOUTH ALL-TIME AS A...

Seed

First Round

Quarterfinals

Preliminary
Game

Semifinals

Third-Place
Game

Championship
Game

No.1

N/A

2-0

-

0-1

1-0

-

No. 2

N/A

-

-

-

-

-

No. 3

N/A

7-2

-

1-3

2-1

0-1

No. 4

N/A

5-1

0-1

1-1

0-1

0-1

No. 5

2-1

3-2

1-0

0-1

0-1

-

No. 6

0-2

0-2

-

-

-

-

No. 7

-

0-1

-

-

-

-

No. 8

0-1

0-2

-

-

-

-

No. 9

2-1

-

-

-

-

-

No. 10

1-2

-

-

-

-

-

No. 11

-

-

-

-

-

-

No. 12

1-2

-

-

-

-

-

DARTMOUTH ALL-TIME AGAINST A...

Seed

First Round

Quarterfinals

Preliminary
Game

Semifinals

Third-Place
Game

Championship
Game

No.1

N/A

-

-

1-0

0-2

-

No. 2

N/A

0-1

-

0-3

1-0

0-1

No. 3

N/A

0-4

-

-

0-1

-

No. 4

N/A

1-2

-

0-2

-

-

No. 5

1-2

3-1

0-1

1-0

1-0

-

No. 6

-

7-1

-

0-1

-

-

No. 7

1-2

2-0

-

-

-

-

No. 8

2-1

-

-

-

-

0-1

No. 9

0-1

-

-

-

-

-

No. 10

-

2-1

1-0

-

-

-

No. 11

0-2

-

-

-

-

-

No. 12

2-1

2-0

-

-

1-0

-