Men's Hockey Looks to Finish Strong against Conference Opponents
Issue   |   Wed, 02/03/2016 - 00:42

The men’s ice hockey team finished interterm with a 2-4-1 record for the month-long break. Highlights include an overtime win against NESCAC rival Connecticut College, which was clinched by a Thomas Lindstrom ’18 goal, assisted by fellow sophomores Patrick Mooney and David White.

Hosting Assumption College on Tuesday, Jan. 26, Amherst rode strong performances from their defensemen to a 4-2 win over the Greyhounds. It was a back-and-forth game through the first two periods, although the visitors held the 2-1 advantage entering the final twenty minutes.

During the third period, however, first-year Phil Johansson single-handedly gained the lead with an unassisted wrist-shot goal and a goal from the point that was aided by passes from junior Topher Flanagan and Lindstrom. With less than four minutes to play, Austin Ho ’17 sealed the deal with Amherst’s final goal of the night. During a physical third period, three Amherst players went to the penalty box during the final minutes of the game, but it was too late for Assumption to mount a comeback.

Saturday’s battle with Wesleyan was a close game but did not end in Amherst’s favor (3-2 loss). The Cardinals struck first with a power-play goal six minutes into the game but Amherst first-year Jack Fitzgerald answered with a nice shot only a minute later. However, the period ended 1-2 due to a late Wesleyan goal when Cardinal forward Terence Durkin deflected a point shot behind Amherst goaltender Dave Cunningham ’16 to take the lead. Fitzgerald was the only player to put a tally on the board during the second period; his power-play goal was assisted by sophomore Will Vosejpka and junior Chris Roll. The game stayed tied 2-2 until Wesleyan managed the go-ahead goal with less than two minutes until the final buzzer.

Sunday afternoon’s contest began well for Amherst with a Vosejpka goal just 34 seconds into the game, assisted by senior Theo Hannah. However, this is where their luck stopped — opponent Trinity evened the score while playing a man down during an Amherst power-play a few minutes later. Trinity continued their momentum through the second period, scoring three times in seven minutes. After this deluge, however, the purple and white were able to pick up their game, shutting Trinity out for the rest of the contest. Unfortunately, they were unable to break the Trinity defense and suffered a 4-1 to the NESCAC leaders.

“Tonight we played well enough to win for 55 minutes, but that’s not enough against a team like Trinity,” senior forward Patrick Arena said. “To be successful in the NESCAC you have to consistently play for 60 minutes, and thus far we haven’t been able to do that. When we do we will be tough to beat, but until we figure out a way to play a whole game, we will have more weekends like this.

Amherst’s record now stands at 6-8-4 overall (4-5-3 NESCAC). The purple and white have six games remaining on the schedule, all in conference play. They start a pair of crucial games this weekend with a 7 p.m. showdown against Bowdoin on Friday, Feb. 5. The Polar Bears sit just one place below Amherst in the standings with the same conference record. The purple and white then face Colby at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 6.