Alexander Kerfoot has a team-high 16 assists this season (Gil Talbot).
No. 9/8 Harvard (9-4-3, 5-3-3 ECAC) at Colgate (7-14-2, 3-6-2 ECAC)
Harvard at No. 10/10 Cornell (11-3-3, 6-2-2)
The Opening Faceoff
The No. 9/8 Harvard men's hockey team makes the trek to central New York this weekend, visiting Colgate Friday and Ivy League rival No. 10/10 Cornell Saturday. Both games are slated for 7 p.m. starts and represent the first meeting against either team for the Crimson.
The First Line
• Harvard is coming off a weekend split at home versus St. Lawrence and Clarkson. Jimmy Vesey recorded the Crimson's first natural hat trick since 2011, spanning 4:55 in the third period, to help the Crimson rally to a 3-2 win over the Saints.
• Defenseman Desmond Bergin will skate in his 100th game Friday night, joining forwards Jimmy Vesey and Kyle Crisucolo in the 100-games played club. The trio is the first set of teammates at Harvard to skate in at least 100 games since Jon Pelle (135, most all-time), Tyler Magura and Mike Taylor did so in 2008.
• Saturday's game at Cornell is the seventh this season against a ranked opponent for the Crimson. Harvard is 2-3-1 in those games this season after topping No. 18 St. Lawrence last Friday at Bright-Landry Hockey Center, 3-2.
Last Time Out
Playing its first weekend series at the Bright-Landry Hockey Center this past week, the Crimson split with visiting St. Lawrence and Clarkson.
On Friday, senior co-captain Jimmy Vesey scored the first natural hat trick by a Crimson skater since 2011, netting three goals in a 4:55 span in the third period to help Harvard rally past then No. 18 St. Lawrence, 3-2. The next night out, Clarkson jumped out to a 3-0 lead, and despite a power play goal by Kyle Criscuolo, held on for the 5-1 win.
Despite a 7-14-2 record this season, the Raiders are 2-0-1 in its last three games with wins over Maine and Union. With eight points, Colgate is tied for eighth in the ECAC standings with Princeton.
Twin brothers Tyson and Tylor Spink have led the Colgate offense this season. Tyson leads the way with 10 goals, 15 assists and 25 points, while Tylor has 19 points and 14 assists. Mike Borkowski is second on the team in scoring with nine points. Junior Charlie Finn has handled the goaltending duties this season with a 6-14-1 record. He enters the weekend holding a 3.54 goals-against average and a .889 save percentage.
Series History vs. Colgate
Harvard has won each of the last four meetings against Colgate and has a 51-23-7 advantage in the all-time series. The Crimson swept the Raiders in three meetings last season, taking both regular season meetings and then taking the championship game of the ECAC Tournament in Lake Placid. Harvard out-scored Colgate 14-4 in the three meetings last year.
Following a loss and tie to Rensselaer and Union, respectively, last weekend, the Big Red fell to No. 10/10 in the national polls this week. Rensselaer goalie Jason Kasdorf made 44 saves to shutout Cornell, 1-0, while Union scored twice in the third period to skate to a 3-3 tie. It's an all-Ivy League weekend for Cornell, as it will host Dartmouth Friday before Harvard's visit to Lynah Rink Saturday.
Cornell's top line of Jeff Kubiak, Anthony Angello and Mitch Vanderlaan lead the team in scoring. Kubiak paves the way with 10 assists and 16 points, while Angello has a team-high eight goals supporting 14 points. Vanderlaan comes in with five tallies and seven helpers. In net, Mitch Gillam has played all 17 games for the Big Red and has a 1.79 GAA and .933 save mark.
Series History vs. Cornell
The Harvard-Cornell all-time series dates back to Jan. 8, 1910, a 5-0 triumph for the Crimson. Harvard won 13 of the first 14 meetings in the series, but Cornell has a 74-61-10 lead in the series. Recent meetings have favored the Big Red, as it has posted a 3-0-2 record in the last five meetings. Harvard's last win against Cornell came Nov. 16, 2012, a 4-1 victory in Ithaca, New York.
Senior forward Jimmy Vesey registered his first career hat trick last Friday, scoring three goals in 4:55 during the third period to help Harvard rally past St. Lawrence, 3-2. Prior to the hat trick, Vesey had scored two goals in a game 11 times. The hat trick was the first for a Harvard skater since Alexander Kerfoot at Boston College, Nov. 11, 2014 and it was the first natural hat trick since Michael Biega '11 versus Brown Jan. 7, 2011.
Junior forward Alexander Kerfoot is among the most prolific passers in college hockey this season. The top-line winger has 19 total points this season, 16 of those coming via assist He had the longest point streak this year, an 11-game stretch from Nov. 7, 2015 - Jan. 15, 2016. That streak is the longest since linemate Jimmy Vesey had a point in 20 consecutive games last season from Nov. 1, 2014 - Feb. 3, 2015.
On Saturday Dec. 5, Kyle Criscuolo joined Jimmy Vesey in the 100-games played club. Vesey has dressed in 109 games during his career. Desmond Bergin is set to become the third current player to skate in 100 games, as he enters Friday with 99 career games player. This year's trio will be the first teammates since 2008's Jon Pelle (135, most all-time), Tyler Magura and Mike Taylor to skate in at least 100 games in their careers.
60 is Elite
With his second goal against Brown Nov. 7, Jimmy Vesey joined the upper echelon of Harvard scorers. The goal gave him 60 for his career, becoming just the 15th player in program history to reach that plateau, tying Joe Cavanagh '71. Vesey, with his hat trick Jan. 15 vs. St. Lawrence, is in sole possession of seventh all-time with 69 goals. He is five goals away from Mike Vukonich '91 in sixth place with 74 career tallies.