The Class of 2010 (from left): Chad Morin, Doug Rogers, John Riley, Ian Tallett, Jack Christian and Alex Biega (photo courtesy Gil Talbot).
Playing at home for the final time in the regular season, the Harvard men's hockey team renews one of college hockey's top rivalries Friday against No. 10 Cornell and celebrates Senior Night Saturday against Colgate. Both games start at 7 p.m.
Sock Drive Saturday
Fans are encouraged to bring new, white socks to Saturday's game against the Raiders. The Crimson is collecting socks to benefit the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program.
Follow From Home
Live video of the games will be available with a Crimson Video subscription on GoCrimson.com, which also provides free live statistics. WHRB-FM 95.3 and WHRB.org offer live audio.
Behind the Bench
Former Crimson captain, NCAA Frozen Four Most Outstanding Player and 13-year National Hockey League veteran Ted Donato '91 is in his sixth season as The Robert D. Ziff '88 Head Coach for Harvard Men's Ice Hockey. He owns an 89???83???20 record, three ECAC title-game appearances and two NCAA tournament bids.
The Crimson split a pair of home games against Rensselaer and No. 16 Union. The Engineers won a wild one, 5-4, Friday. Jack Christian (Wilton, Conn.) scored just 18 seconds into the game, and Michael Biega (Montreal, Que.) made it 2-0 before the contest was two minutes old, but RPI overcame an Alex Fallstrom (Stockholm, Sweden) goal and made it 3-3 by the end of the first period. Conor Morrison (London, Ont.) gave Harvard a 4-3 lead in the second period, but Rensselaer again rallied before the end of the period.
Alex Killorn (Montreal, Que.) scored twice and Kyle Richter (Calgary, Alta.) made 31 saves to lead Harvard to a 4-3 win against the Dutchmen the following night. Fallstrom logged a goal and an assist and David Valek (Zagreb, Croatia) also scored to help build a 4-0 lead. Union scored three times in the final six minutes, including two goals with an extra attacker in the last 31 seconds.
Ready to Move
The Crimson trails fourth-place Rensselaer and St. Lawrence by three points and three positions and has only four games left to challenge for a playoff bye, but three of those contests are against teams that start the weekend ahead of Harvard in the league standings. Last year's squad went 4-0-2 over the final six league games to jump from ninth place to fifth, missing out on a bye by two points.
Of the teams against which Harvard has completed its season series, the Crimson holds head-to-head playoff-positioning tiebreaker advantages against Dartmouth and Union, while Princeton and Rensselaer own head-to-head edges on Harvard. The secondary tiebreaking criterion is wins, followed by record against top-four teams, record against top-eight teams, head-to-head goal differential, goal differential against top-four teams and goal differential against top-eight teams.
With the switch to a new academic calendar this year, Harvard's exam break moved from January to December, but the Crimson's success following exams is nothing new. Under Ted Donato, Harvard is 37-11-8 in post???exam league games (6-3-1 so far this season) and 18-4-5 in post-Beanpot ECAC contests. The Crimson is 12-1-4 in its last 17 post-Beanpot league games and 20-1-0 in February home games under Donato.
Harvard is seeking its second straight win against a first-place, nationally ranked opponent. The Crimson is 3-2 this season against teams in first place (or tied for first) in the ECAC standings.
Harvard is 3-1 at home and 4-4-1 overall against ranked teams this season and has won eight of its last nine home games against ranked opponents, dating back to 2007-08.
The Bright Stuff
The Crimson is 57-27-3 (.672) at home under Ted Donato and 279-120-28 (.686) all-time at Bright Hockey Center, which opened in 1979-80.
Quality, Not Quantity
Harvard has been outshot in six of its seven wins. In each of those victories, the Crimson recorded fewer than 30 shots on goal and allowed more than 30. Harvard outshot Brown, 35-29, in its other win, a 5-2 triumph Feb. 5 in Providence, R.I.
Leading the Crimson
Freshman Louis Leblanc (Kirkland, Que.) leads Harvard with 20 points and shares the team goals lead at 10 with Conor Morrison. Michael Biega has a team high 13 assists. He and Alex Killorn (nine goals, 10 assists) have 19 points each.
Alex Killorn has recorded six points on three goals and three assists in the last five games, while Conor Morrison has logged two goals and two helpers in three contests. Alex Fallstrom has two goals and an assist in the last two games.
A Balanced Attack
In each of last weekend's games, players on three different forward lines scored for Harvard.
Saturday's game marks the final regular-season home game for Harvard seniors Chad Morin (Auburn, N.Y.), Doug Rogers (Watertown, Mass.), John Riley (Lake Forest, Ill.), Ian Tallett (St. Louis, Mo.), Jack Christian and Alex Biega (Montreal, Que.). They have helped the Crimson earn home playoff series in each of the past three seasons, including 2008, when they helped lead Harvard to the league championship game.
In addition to their on-ice successes over the previous three years, the members of the Class of 2010 have earned a combined seven ECAC Hockey All Academic selections. Riley is the team's ECAC Student-Athlete of the Year honoree this season.
Louis Leblanc ranks fourth nationally among freshmen with 0.43 goals per game, while fellow rookie Conor Morrison is tied for fifth in that category with 0.40 per game. Leblanc stands seventh in overall rookie scoring with 0.87 points per game.
Nov. 7 at Lynah Rink
Then-No. 5 Cornell scored five unanswered goals in less than 16 minutes to rally to a 6-3 win against Harvard in Ithaca, N.Y. Louis Leblanc, Conor Morrison and Doug Rogers scored to lift the Crimson to a 3-1 lead midway through the game, and Chris Huxley (Weymouth, Mass.) logged two assists. Joe Devin scored the tying and go-ahead goals and added an assist for the Big Red. Ryan Carroll (Hackensack, N.J.) made 24 saves for Harvard, while Cornell's Ben Scrivens stopped 22 shots.
Harvard vs. Cornell Series History
The Crimson has won five of its last seven games against Big Red, each of the last three meetings at Bright and five straight encounters away from Lynah Rink. Ryan Carroll made 42 saves and five different players had two-point nights to lead Harvard to a 4-2 home win late last season.
Cornell holds an all-time 66-58-7 series lead in one of college hockey's top rivalries. The teams first met Jan. 8, 1910, a 5-0 Harvard win in New York City. The games have been closer in recent years, with the 15 of the last 17 being decided by two goals or fewer. The teams have met in the semfinals or final in six of the last nine ECAC tournaments. They rank first and third in all-time league regular-season championships (Harvard 13, Cornell 8) and first and second in ECAC tournament titles (Cornell 11, Harvard 8).
Scouting the Big Red
Cornell lost a showdown with Yale, 2-1 in overtime, Saturday but bounced back with a 6-2 win Tuesday against travel partner Colgate to tie the Bulldogs for first place in ECAC Hockey. Riley Nash had two goals and two assists against the Raiders. The Big Red was held scoreless in six power plays but for the season leads ECAC Hockey in power-play efficiency (25.9 percent) and penalty killing (89.4 percent) in league play.
Blake Gallagher leads the Big Red with 16 goals and 31 points. With 15 assists, he shares the team lead with captain Colin Greening, who scored both Cornell goals last year at Bright. Ben Scrivens ranks third nationally with a 2.03 goals-against average and fourth with a .930 save percentage.
Nov. 6 at Starr Rink
Colgate put in four third-period goals to rally from a three-goal deficit and edge Harvard, 5-4, in Hamilton, N.Y. Alex Killorn notched a goal and an assist, while Louis Leblanc had two assists. Kyle Richter made 35 saves. Colgate's David McIntyre logged four points on a goal and three assists, while Austin Smith scored twice and added one helper.
Harvard vs. Colgate Series History
The Crimson owns a 44-19-6 series lead against the Raiders since the teams' first meeting Jan. 7, 1961, a 4-1 Harvard win. The Crimson has gone 5-5-2 against Colgate under Ted Donato, with the most memorable victory coming on a Kevin Du '07 double overtime goal in the 2005 ECAC semifinals. Chris Huxley scored the third period game-winner in Harvard's 3-2 win at Bright last season.
Scouting the Raiders
Colgate has lost four of its last six games, including a 6-2 defeat at the hands of Cornell Tuesday. Austin Smith leads the Raiders with 34 points and 23 assists. David McIntyre follows with 31 points on 10 goals and 21 helpers, while Brian Day has a team-high 18 goals ato go with 12 assists. Alex Evin owns a .901 save percentage, 2.94 goals-against average and 7-7-3 record.
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