Clarkson looks to string together wins as ECAC hockey campaign heats up
Coming off a key ECAC Hockey win at Brown on Saturday, the Clarkson University Hockey team will look to build upon its momentum when it returns to Cheel Arena this weekend. The Golden Knights host Quinnipiac on Friday at 7:00 p.m. and then on Saturday the Green and Gold will be part of the first-ever Hockey Day in Potsdam when they faceoff against Princeton, beginning at 4:00 p.m.
Clarkson, along with SUNY Potsdam’s Men’s Hockey team and the Potsdam Central High School Boys’ Hockey team are all scheduled to play one game on Saturday. Fans can purchase one ticket good for admission to all three games for just $20. All proceeds benefit Marine Cpl. Aaron Howell, a 24-year-old Parishville native who was severely injured during a tour in Afghanistan last April. Following the afternoon game against Princeton, Clarkson will hold its annual “Skate With a Knight”.Guided by eighth-year head coach George Roll, associate coach Greg Drechsel and assistant coach Chris Rogles, the Knights own a 12-9-2 overall record and are tied for sixth in the ECAC Hockey standings with a 6-4-1 league mark. Clarkson, which has earned at least one point in everyone of its league weekends (5) this season, is two points out of third with a game in hand on every team in the conference other than travel partner, 10th-place St. Lawrence.
Clarkson, led by junior captain Mark Borowiecki (Kanata, ONT), and assistant captains, senior Brandon DeFazio (Oakville, ONT) and junior Jake Morley (Ogdensburg, NY), snapped a two-game losing slide with the 3-1 win over Brown in Providence, RI after losing a tight game to number-one ranked Yale 5-2 in New Haven, CT on Friday.
The final score might not have indicated it, but the Knights gave the top-rated Bulldogs all they could handle Friday night at Ingalls Rink. Clarkson twice overcame one-goal deficits against Yale, tying the score 2-2 early in the third period on junior Julien Cayer’s (Longueuil, QUE) first goal of the season. Boasting the most potent offense in college hockey, the Bulldogs, however, answered back with three straight goals to post the win, improving their record at home to 11-0. Yale sealed the win with an empty-net tally at 19:13, and then scored their fifth goal with .8 of a second remaining.
The Knights battled back from a 1-0 deficit the following afternoon at Brown, receiving goals from three different players to gain the road victory. Freshman Jarrett Burton (Echo Bay, ONT), Borowiecki and junior Nick Tremblay (Candiac, QUE), with his second goal of the weekend, provided the scoring and junior Paul Karpowich (Thunder Bay, ONT) was strong in net, turning aside 30 shots.
Since losing to Clarkson 5-3 at TD Banknorth Center on December 4 for its fourth straight loss, Quinnipiac has picked up its play and has gone 5-2-2 over its last nine games. Guided by head coach Rand Pecknold, the Bobcats stand at 12-10-3 overall. Quinnipiac, which has played two more league games than Clarkson, is right behind the Knights in the ECAC Hockey standings with an eighth-place 5-6-2 conference mark. In an exhibition game this past Saturday, the Bobcats defeated the USA Under-18 team 4-2 in Hamden, CT.
Ranked 19th in the nation, Princeton hosts Sacred Heart in a non-league contest on Tuesday and plays at St. Lawrence on Friday prior to facing off against the Knights. The Tigers, guided by head coach Guy Gadowsky, enter the week with an 11-6-1 overall record and are tied for third in the league standings with a 7-4-1 ECAC Hockey mark. Princeton has been off the last two week after splitting a weekend series at Hobey Baker Rink on January 7-9, losing to Cornell 2-1 on Friday before defeating Colgate 5-4 on Sunday.
The Golden Knights have won two straight over Quinnipiac after losing in the previous three meetings. Clarkson holds an 8-6 lead in the all-time series which started with a 4-0 Clarkson win in Northford, CT on February 8, 2000. The Knights skated to a 5-3 victory at TD Banknorth Center on December 4 and defeated the Bobcats 4-1 at Cheel Arena last February 13. Quinnipiac’s last win in the series was 4-2 triumph in Hamden, CT on November 6, 2009. The Bobcats last win in Potsdam was a 4-2 victory on November 21, 2008. Clarkson is 4-2 against Quinnipiac at Cheel Arena. The Knights won their fifth and last ECAC Tournament title with a 4-2 victory over the Bobcats in Albany on March 17, 2007.
Scott Freeman (2-7) has a team-high nine points in the series, while Brandon DeFazio, who recorded his first career hat trick in this season’s first win over Quinnipiac, follows with eight points (4-4). Paul Karpowich posts a .909 save percentage, a 3.03 GAA and a 2-2 record against the Bobcats. Richie LaVeau has one start against the Bobcats and holds a .900 save percentage, a 3.10 GAA and a 0-1 record. George Roll is 7-5 against Quinnipiac, while Rand Pecknold is 6-8 against the Knights.
Clarkson holds a decisive 71-26-5 edge in the all-time series against Princeton, which began with an 8-5 Knight victory in New Jersey on January 17, 1928. Clarkson has won two straight in the series, including a 5-3 victory at Hobey Baker Rink on December 3. The Knights snapped a three-game losing stretch to the Tigers with a 4-3 victory in Potsdam on February 12 in their last meeting in 2009-10. Princeton won the opening game last season with a 4-1 triumph at Hobey Baker Rink on November 7. The Tigers, who are 3-20 all-time at Cheel Arena, last posted a victory in Potsdam on November 22, 2008, winning 4-2. The Knights claimed the program’s 10th ECAC regular-season crown with a 4-3 victory over Princeton in Cheel Arena on February 29, 2008.
Lauri Tuohimaa leads the way offensively against the Tigers with seven points, all assists. Scott Freeman has tallied three goals and three assists in the series. Paul Karpowich is 2-2 against Princeton with a .922 save percentage and a 3.01 GAA. Richie LaVeau is 0-1 against the Tigers with a .897 save percentage and a 4.11 GAA. George Roll is 11-6 against Princeton, while Guy Gadowsky is 6-9 against the Knights.
Clarkson has displayed a balanced offense this season with 22 different goal scorers, including eight with game-winners ... Over the weekend, four different Knights accounted for the five goals and 11 players recorded at least one point … Brandon DeFazio leads the team in scoring with 18 points (9-9), followed by Nick Tremblay with 15 points (7-8). Tremblay currently has the hot hand for the Green and Gold with a five-game point-scoring streak (3-2), including a goal in each game over the weekend ... Julien Cayer tallied his first goal of the season in Friday’s game at Yale and picked up an assist at Brown ... Freshman Will Frederick (Allison Park, PA) set up a goal in each game, joining Tremblay and Cayer as the only Knights with a point in each game on last weekend’s road trip ... Jarrett Burton started the Clarkson comeback at Brown with his second goal of the season ... The Knights are 8-4 away from Cheel Arena and have won six of their last eight games outside of Potsdam … Clarkson is 10-0-2 when scoring first and 12-0-1 when leading or tied after two periods … The Knights are 7-4-1 when outshot by their opponents … The Knights have scored six shorthanded goals this season, fifth most in the NCAA this season. The school record is 18 set in 1979-80 … Paul Karpowich has posted 13 games with 30-or-more saves this season. Through 22 games this year he owns a .914 save percentage and a 2.95 goals against average en route to an 12-8-2 record, including one shutout … Former Clarkson standout defenseman Grant Clitsome ’08 was recalled to the National Hockey League by the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday, January 9. Through six NHL games, Clitsome has tallied five points on two goals and three assists. Clitsome was playing with the Springfield Falcons, Columbus’ American Hockey League affiliate. He is one of nine former Golden Knight to skate in the NHL this season, joing Chris Clark ‘98 on the Columbus roster.