Players' talk rallies Union past Harvard
There are times when the head coach knows when to lay down the law to his players when they aren't playing well. Then there are opportunities for the coach to let the players police themselves.
Union hockey coach Rick Bennett took the latter approach after his Dutchmen fell behind, 2-0, in the first period against Harvard.
The strategy worked. The Dutchmen came out and dominated the final 40 minutes, taking a 4-2 ECAC Hockey win over the Crimson at Bright Hockey Center to complete a 2-0 weekend. Union beat Dartmouth, 7-2, Friday.
Even though the Dutchmen outshot the Crimson, 14-13, they were a bit discombobulated. Bennett didn't say anything to the team.
"It was all the players," Bennett said. "It was our leaders, [captain] Mat Bodie, [and alternate captains] Shayne Gostisbehere and Daniel Carr. I thought they did a tremendous job of leading the way. That’s what we needed, and that’s what they provided."
It also helped that Daniel Ciampini scored 23 seconds into the second period to cut Harvard's lead to 2-1.
"That was real huge," Ciampini said. "That was a spark for us."
And Ciampini wasn't done. He tied the score 3:37 later.
Carr, a senior center, snapped the tie with 5:37 left in the second on a one-timer off of a Mat Bodie pass. For Carr, it was not only his fourth goal of the season, but the 60th of his career as he became the all-time leading goal scorer at the Division I level for Union. He surpassed Mario Valery-Trabucco, who scored 59 goals for the Dutchmen from 2006-10.
"It’s an honor. Mario Valery-Trabucco was a great player, and had a great career and is doing well in the pros," said Carr, who is the only Union player to record two 20-goal seasons. "But the most important thing tonight is we got two points."
Matt Hatch sealed the win on an empty-net goal with 25 seconds to play.
Max Novak had three assists for the Dutchmen. Novak, who missed the first five games because of a lower-body injury, scored against Dartmouth in his season debut. So, it was a good return for him.
Elsewhere, RPI snapped out of its offensive slump in a big way.
Brock Higgs had a hat trick, leading the Engineers 7-1 rout of Dartmouth at Thompson Arena.
The Engineers entered the game having not scored in their last 109:30. The skid lasted 6:57 more before Ryan Haggerty scored his NCAA-leading 10th goal.
Higgs scored twice in the first and got the third goal with 5:53 left in the second.
Matt Neal, Jacob Laliberte and Luke Curadi also scored for RPI. For Curadi, a junior defenseman, it was his first career collegiate goal.
It was a bad weekend for Dartmouth. With the losses to Union and RPI, the Big Green was outscored, 14-3.
In women's action, both Union and RPI lost.
Miye D’Oench scored twice to lead seventh-ranked Harvard past the Dutchwomen, 3-0, at Messa Rink.
At Houston Field House, goalie Lindsay Holdcroft turned aside 33 shots, and Dartmouth made the most of its 11 shots on goal to beat the Engineers, 3-1.