Men's Hockey Skates to Second in the NESCAC
Issue   |   Tue, 02/04/2014 - 22:01
Photo Courtesy of Chloe McKenzie ‘14
Senior defenseman Elliot Bostrom's performance this past week earned him NESCAC Player of the Week honors. Bostrom has six assists on the season.

The Lord Jeffs returned to conference play this past weekend with two strong victories over NESCAC rivals Trinity and Wesleyan, two wins to finish a grueling road trip. The team is looking forward to returning to Orr Rink this weekend afer a month on the road to make a run at a regular season NESCAC championship.

Amherst improved to 9-3 in NESCAC play, good enough for second in the league, right behind the Williams Ephs.
The Jeffs traveled to Hartford, CT on Saturday night to play the Bantams on their home ice. Much of the first period was scoreless, but towards the end of the period, Ryan Edwards ’14 netted the game’s opening goal off of an assist from Elliot Bostrom ’14.

Trinity outshot Amherst in both the first and second periods, leading to a Bantam goal early in the second period to tie the game at one. The Jeffs took the lead again just minutes later when senior captain Andrew Kurlandski converted a feed from Edwards.

Trinity, however, didn’t give up and managed to tie the game again halfway through the second period. The third period remained tied at two until the five-minute mark when Erik Hansen ’14 scored the game-winner on an excellent individual effort.

The Jeffs overcame two penalties at the end of regulation to secure the win, and sophomore goalie Dave Cunningham finished with a whopping 43 saves, continuing his solid year between the Amherst pipes.

Sunday afternoon the team traveled to Middletown, CT and played Wesleyan at Spurrier-Snyder Rink. Following a scoreless first period, the Jeffs broke the tie in the second when they scored two power play goals during a Cardinal five-minute major.
Brian Safstrom ’14 notched the first goal six minutes and twenty-eight seconds in to the game, assisted by Bostrom and Topher Flanagan ’16. Two minutes later, Conor Brown ’16 scored his seventh goal of the season off assists from Bostrom again and Kurlandski.

The Jeffs continued their offensive onslaught in the third period when Brendan Burke ’16 scored Amherst’s third goal of the game with just overfive minutes remaining. Patrick Arena ’16 and Mike Cashman ’15 assisted on the score, before Arena added a goal of his own to give Amherst the 4-0 lead. Wesleyan managed to squeeze a goal by Cunningham with just under two minutes left. Amherst finished with a 4-1 victory.

“This past month has been a tough test for our team and we are all disappointed with our recent performance, and more generally speaking, our record so far in January. A lot of our problems this past month have stemmed from our current nine game road stint. It has been difficult for us to play away from Orr rink for a full month, as we haven’t been able to get a steady rhythm going like we had in the earlier part of the season. Our greatest weakness so far has been our inability to play with consistent effort for 60 minutes” said Bostrom.

The Jeffs have four home games coming up against Colby, Bowdoin, Conn. College and Tufts, their first in over a month. These games will be important in determining final seeding for the playoffs, and there will be some excellent hockey in the upcoming weekends on campus.

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