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Bulldogs, Bears All Weekend

Antoine Laganiere. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Antoine Laganiere. (photo by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

Travel Partner Weekend Series

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NEW HAVEN, Conn. – It's travel partner weekend for Yale and Brown with a home-and-home series Saturday and Sunday afternoons in New Haven and Providence. The No. 1 ranked Bulldogs (14-1, 8-0 ECAC Hockey), who own the nation's longest (9) active win streak, take on the Bears (5-6-4, 3-4-1) with a tight conference race heading down the home stretch.

Yale and Brown first played in the 1897-98 season and Yale has an 86-69-8 lead, including wins in 10 of the last 12.  However, the two Bear wins were crucial, helping the visitors take the 2010 conference playoff series at New Haven.

Yale beat Brown 7-4 in the Ivy Shootout at Ingalls Rink, the season opener for both on Oct. 29.  Denny Kearney had a natural hat trick and four points, Brian O'Neill (3 points) hit the net twice and Broc Little added a goal and three points for a Bulldog team ranked fifth. Yale scored five straight goals after being down by two and outshot Brown 40-20 while converting two of six man-advantages. Eli netminder Jeff Malcolm halted 16 shots and gave up four man-advantage tallies. Mike Clemente, who had 14 stops in the third, finished with 33 saves for the Bears.

The Blue won 2-1 at Dartmouth and 4-2 at Harvard while getting points from 14 different players. Josh Balch, Brendan Mason, Chad Ziegler and Ken Trentowski had points in both contests. Four different players scored and Ryan Rondeau stopped 29 shots before a sellout at Harvard's Bright Hockey Center on a snowy night in Boston. Kenny Agostino, Chris Cahill, Mason and Ziegler found the net as the Bulldogs outshot the Crimson 39-31 and converted two of seven power plays.  Antoine Laganiere and Balch hit the net at Thompson Arena on Friday while Rondeau stopped 32 of 33 shots. Yale's six-goal weekend included outshooting the two ECAC teams 76-64.

Brown, coming off a win at Harvard and a loss at Dartmouth, has split its last four games, including a 6-1 win over Boston University at the Shillelagh Tournament in Hoffman Estates, Ill. Jack MacLellan (11-14-25), second in Division I with 1.67 points per game, and Harry Zolnierczyk (9-10-19) lead the team on offense. Mike Clemente (3.92, .884, 3-4-4) has the bulk of the net work but newcomer Marco DeFilippo (2.81, . 917, 2-2) made 32 saves in both games last weekend as the starter.

Yale's 2010-11 start is unique. This is the first time the Elis have won their first eight conference games, while this is the best (14-1) first half of a season since Yale ran off 16 straight wins in 1929-30 and finished 17-1-1. The Elis' best ECAC start was 8-1 in 1997-98.
Kenny Agostino, the leading scorer among the Yale freshmen, has four goals and seven points over the last four games. Agostino opened the scoring at Harvard early in the second period when he put back his tip-in try. On Jan. 2, he became the first Yale newcomer in 30 years to record five points in one game. He notched three goals and two assists against Holy Cross and became the school's first freshman to tally five points since former Olympian and NHL star Bob Brooke '83 established the school rookie record against Dartmouth in 1980.

Sophomore F Andrew Miller (49 gp, 9-47-56), voted "best passer" by his teammates, is No. 1 in the nation with 1.20 assists per game. What's more impressive is that 13 of his 18 assists are primary ones. He is also hitting the net when it counts this season; three of his four goals have been winners, which ranks fourth in Division I. Miller (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.), who is eighth in the nation with 1.47 points per contest, registered the most (34) points by a Yale rookie since Tom Walsh set the bar with 41 in 1984-85. The speedy forward was the 2008-09 USA Junior Player of the Year and 2007 Michigan High School Mr. Hockey. Last winter, he was second among conference rookies with one point per game, which also put him fourth in the country for newcomers. He ranked eighth in Division I last year with .85 assists per outing.
Goalie Ryan Rondeau (Carvel, AB), who stopped 58 of 61 shots to earn a pair of road wins last weekend at Dartmouth and Harvard, was named ECAC Hockey Goalie of the Week for the second time this season. Rondeau, who had a 141:29 scoreless streak and consecutive shutouts (first time for a Yalie since 1998) in December, stopped numerous odd-man rushes and grade-A chances in both contests. Rondeau, ECAC Goalie of the Week on Dec. 6 (30 saves, Union; 15, RPI), is 13-0 this season. He ranks second in GAA (1.74) and fourth in SP (.936) in Division I. Nine of the 22 goals he has allowed this year came on the man-advantage. The senior, who owns a 19-4-1 career record, has been in net for six wins over ranked teams including a 3-2 decision with North Dakota at the 2010 NCAA Northeast Regional semifinal.
Denny Kearney (Hanover, NH) is third on the team with eight goals while his 22 points are second. His assist total (14) includes 11 that were primary helpers, while he ranks ninth in the country with a .93 overall average. Kearney is eighth in Division I with 1.47 points per game. He notched eight of those over the first two games (Brown, Dartmouth on Oct. 29-30) and was ECAC Hockey's Player of the Week. That included his first collegiate hat trick (natural) and a game-winner during the most prolific weekend of his collegiate career. In addition, all four assists were primary ones. Kearney (117 gp, 37-75-112), who was voted by his teammates as the "best dresser" and "most talkative" among the Bulldogs, is Yale's active career assist leader (7th best at Yale) but may not be the best athlete in his family. His sister, Hannah Kearney, won an Olympic gold medal in mogul skiing at the 2010 Games and is the top ranked American in that event.
Yale senior forward Broc Little (Rindge, N.H.) leads the team with 12 goals and 24 points. He is second in the nation with .80 goals per game and is fourth with 1.60 points after tallying one assist last weekend. Little, the only Bulldog with three (PP, SH, GW) different types of goals this season, had his third career hat trick (3-1-4) against Holy Cross on Jan. 2. Seven of his 12 assists have been primary ones. He was named one of the 20 candidates for the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award in hockey, which honors student-athletes who excel both on and off the ice. Little (110 gp, 65-58-123), who has 13 more points than games played, led the 2009-10 Bulldogs with 27 goals, a Yale record for juniors, while leading all of Division I in goals per game (.79). He was second on the team with 41 points and garnered numerous post-season honors, including RBK Second-Team All-America, first-team All-ECAC, All-Ivy and All-New England. Little, a political science major, has shown the same dedication in the classroom with a 3.1 GPA and three-time ECAC Hockey All-Academic Team status.

Keith Allain '80, Yale's Malcolm G. Chace Head Coach of Hockey, is 86-50-12 as a head coach, including 9-7 in the post season. Only two other Yale hockey head coaches have more wins, and none have reached the 80-win mark faster than Allain. The former Yale goalie has led the Blue to three Ivy League titles, two ECAC regular season championships and a pair of NCAA Tournament appearances. Allain, who played and worked for Tim Taylor at Yale, earned the 2008-09 Tim Taylor Award as the ECAC Hockey Coach of the Year by leading the Elis to the best season in the program's history. A school-record 24 wins, Yale's first ECAC Tournament Championship and a school-best No. 5 national ranking in late March were a few reasons why he was selected. College Hockey News named him 2008-09 national coach of the year. This is Allain's 12th overall year at Yale; he spent four as a student-athlete goalie and three as an assistant coach in the 1980s. Allain, a former NHL (17 years) and Olympics (1992, 2006) assistant, was named the 11th head coach of the Yale men's ice hockey program on April 15, 2006. Allain is the second Yale graduate to take the position and the first since Holcomb York '17 led the Bulldogs from 1930 to 1938 (Lawrence M. Noble '27 coached the Elis from 1928 to 1930). The starting goalie on four Bulldog squads, Allain recorded the second-most (31) wins for a Yale netminder and ranks third at the school with 2,337 career saves. He owns four of the top 10 Yale single-game save totals, including 55 stops in a 7-3 loss at Minnesota on Dec. 28, 1978.
Keith Allain served as head coach of the 2011 U.S. National Junior Team and led the squad to a bronze medal at the International Ice Hockey Federation World Junior Championship in Buffalo, N.Y. The U.S., which won all but its semifinal game, defeated Sweden to take the bronze on Jan. 5.  Allain, who helped the U.S. National Junior Team win a second straight medal at the IIHF World Junior Championship for the first time, owns a 13-4-2 overall record as a head coach in the event, giving him the top winning percentage (.736) of any U.S. head coach to have served on multiple teams. Kyle Wallack, Yale's fifth-year assistant who is in his first season as associate head coach, served as Yale's head coach in Allain's absence.  
Captain Jimmy Martin (St. Louis, Mo.) is a defensive defenseman who has turned himself into a player with offensive potential. He has four assists over his last four games and now has six goals and 43 career points, including a career-best two goals and 17 assists last winter. Martin is a political science major who was a member of the Des Moines Buccaneers' 2007 USHL final four squad.  
A pair of experienced sophomores joins Ryan Rondeau in the net mix. Jeff Malcolm (12 gp, 4.02, .837, 6-4-0) made 16 saves in the 7-4 win over Brown on Oct. 29 before stopping 25 shots in a 4-3 loss at Air Force. The Lethbridge, AB, native has allowed eight goals, including six on the power play and two with a 5-on-3 advantage. Alta Loma, Calif., resident Nick Maricic (15 gp, 2.96, .887, 7-4-2) played the last period against Holy Cross (5 saves) but has not had a start this winter.
Junior F Brian O'Neill (82gp, 36-56-92) is third on the team with eight goals and ranks 10th nationally in points per game (1.40). He began 2010-11 with a 3-2-5 weekend in the two wins including a career-best 2-1-3 and the GWG against Dartmouth on Oct. 30. Last winter he led the Elis with 29 assists and 45 points while ranking seventh in the country with 1.32 PPG. One of his best plays of 2009-10 was a pass he put on Sean Backman's stick in OT that set up the winner at Cornell. He also had the tying goal in the OT draw at the Badger Showdown title game against Wisconsin. O'Neill (Yardley, Pa.), who was voted "most humorous" by his teammates, made the 2008-09 CHN (national) and ECAC Hockey All-Rookie teams after going 12-14-26 in 2008-09.

Chris Cahill (North Andover, Mass.) entered the season with 16 goals in three collegiate seasons. He already has nine this winter, including three different two-goal games and a pair of three-point outings. Cahill, 12th in Division I with .64 goals per game, was named ECAC Hockey Player of the Week on Dec. 6 after leading (3-1-4) Yale to a pair of wins over nationally ranked teams with three goals and four points. The senior forward is second on the team in goals with career numbers of 25 goals and 59 points in 105 games.
The class of 2014 includes four forwards and one defenseman. All five competed in the Northeast during 2009-10. Three of the new Elis played in the juniors (Eastern, North Atlantic) last winter while two came to Yale from New England prep schools. F Clinton Bourbonais (Colchester, Conn.), F Kenny Agostino (Flanders, N.J.) and F Jesse Root (Pittsburgh, Pa.) have all found the net this season. D Gus Young (Dedham, Mass.) has an assist in two games played, while F Brad Peltz (Mount Kisco, N.Y.) is looking for his first action. Agostino (2), Root and Peltz combined for four of Yale's five goals in the win over the Red Stars. Agostino tied a school rookie record with five (3-2) points against Holy Cross.
The Bulldogs have 75 goals and are No. 1 in the nation with a 5.0 average. They scored 10 against the Crusaders and had seven goals twice, six once and five on five occasions this year. Yale led the nation in scoring in 2009-10.
The Yale roster includes players from 12 different states and three provinces. Illinois, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania are represented twice each while six hail from Alberta, including a Calgary pair.

Northeast prep schools and the United States Hockey League each contributed nine players to the Bulldog roster. Six former British Columbia Hockey League skaters are at Yale while the Atlantic Junior Hockey League has a pair. One Eli played in the Eastern Junior Hockey League and another came from a private school.
The Bulldogs have outshot 14 of 15 opponents (by 155 combined) this year after having the advantage in 26 of the 34 games last year. Vermont (32-30) was the only squad to outshoot the Blue this season.

The Class of 2011 became the winningest in Yale men's hockey history after beating Holy Cross on Jan. 2. The current seniors have amassed 75 victories, surpassing the total reached by the Class of 2010. In addition, the Class of 2011, which is the first from this school to be undefeated (3-0-1) at Cornell, could be the first at Yale to have four winning seasons since the Class of 1954.
Eight members of the senior class have accounted for 37 goals. The juniors (6) have hit the net 22 times. Yale sophomores (3) and freshmen (4) have eight goals each. Bulldog defensemen have hit the net five times.

Yale had four shorthanded goals last year and led the nation with nine the year before. The Bulldogs' first goal of 2010-11 was shorthanded by Broc Little, the school's career leader with seven, but the team has not done that since.

Saturday is Youth Day at Ingalls Rink. Children will receive Yale hockey team poster cards for use in a post-game autograph session… Yale has six seniors with at least 105 games played each... Josh Balch has a three-game point streak... The 33 SOG allowed against Dartmouth were the most for Yale this year... Yale and Dartmouth were called for two penalties each.

The Elis host Clarkson and St. Lawrence next Friday and Saturday nights in a pair of 7:00 starts.

Thirteen former Yale players are skating professionally this winter: Sean Backman '10 (Texas Stars, AHL, 28 GP, 5-7-12 ), Ryan Donald '10 (Providence Bruins, AHL), Mark Arcobello '10 (Stockton Thunder, ECHL, 29 GP, 6-10-16), Alec Richards '09 (Rockford Icehogs, AHL, 21 gp, 50 GA, 2 SO, 2.65 GAA, 9-9-1, .909 save percentage), Brennan Turner '09 (Elmira Jackals, ECHL), David Meckler '09 (Manchester Monarchs, AHL), Matt Cohen '07 (Hamburg Freezers, DEL), Brad Mills '07 (New Jersey Devils, NHL; Albany Devils, AHL), Chris Higgins '05 (Florida Panthers, NHL, 34 GP, 8-8-16), Joe Callahan '05 (Rochester Americans, AHL), Stacey Bauman '03 (Tulsa Oilers, CHL), Jeff Hamilton '01 (HIFK Helsinki, FNL), Ray Giroux '98 (Chelyabinsk Traktor, KHL).
A survey of the 2010-11 Bulldogs produced the following results about the student-athletes.

Who on the team…
Is the strongest (pound-for-pound):    Peel    
Is the fastest on skates:            Balch
Has the hardest shot:            Matczak
Is the best fore-checker:            Jaskowiak
Is the best passer:            Miller

Which teammate is…
The best singer:                Anderson        
Has best sense of humor:            O'Neill
Has the biggest appetite:            Peel
Most soft spoken:            Dueck
Most talkative:                Kearney
Want your sister to date:            Dueck
Best dresser:                Kearney
Likely to become a head hockey coach:    Rondeau

The pay-per-view Yale home hockey "TV" broadcasts on are a Yale Athletic Department production that employs students to produce, shoot and broadcast most of the action. Sam Dorward '13 is the producer and Joel Oblizalo '12 does the camera work. Evan Ellis '11 handles most of the calls for the Elis as well as an interview with Coach Allain.

The Feb. 5 Dartmouth game airs live on the YES Network as part of the winter Yale on YES package. This is the first time the Yale hockey team will appear on YES, the network available in New York, Connecticut, New Jersey and Pennsylvania on cable, DirecTV, AT&T U-verse and Verizon FiOS. The home of the New York Yankees and New Jersey Nets is also available nationally on DirecTV, AT&T U-verse, Verizon FiOS and select cable operators.
The Dec. 5 game against Union aired live on ESPNU with Barry Melrose and E.J. Hradek calling the action. It was the first of two Yale games on ESPNU this season. The Feb. 20 game at Princeton is also on ESPNU.  The Union game was Yale's third on the tube this season. The first was Nov. 19 at Cornell on CBS College Sports followed by a Nov. 20 game at Colgate on Time Warner Cable.
The Yale student radio station formerly found on AM-1340 and on, is only available via internet this season. WYBC does most of the home contests and a pre-game interview with Coach Allain.
Yale hockey celebrated the re-dedication of Ingalls Rink (3,500 capacity) on Jan. 16, 2010, with ceremonies on and off the ice. The rink built in 1958 has been modernized in many ways while adding 13,000 square feet of varsity operational space. The additions include locker rooms and space for strength & conditioning (including skating treadmill), student-athlete study area, medical & training, officials, video, coaches, equipment, reception (Schley Room) and more. There are new historical displays and concession stands and bathrooms for the building nicknamed the Yale Whale because of its humpback-shaped roof.
Yale co-hosted the 2009 East Regional at The Arena at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, and the Bulldogs were one of the four teams to participate. The 2011 and 2012 East Regional Tournaments will also be at The Arena co-hosted by the Elis and Fairfield. This coming NCAA tourney is March 25-26. Game times on the 25th are 3 and 6:30 with a 6:30 p.m. championship contest on the 26th.
The Bulldogs wear the bullseye for the sixth straight week as the nation's top ranked men's college hockey team. Yale received all 33 first-place votes in the USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine poll and 45 of 50 in the poll. North Dakota, Boston College, New Hampshire, Minnesota-Duluth, Denver, Michigan and Notre Dame round out the top eight on both lists. The Fighting Sioux and Eagles were the other schools to earn first-place tallies.

Yale, winners of the last two conference regular season titles, has a one-point lead over second-place Princeton with a partial ECAC schedule on tap for this weekend. Two other teams are a within a good weekend's striking distance as part of a packed conference race.

filed by Steve Conn, Yale Sports Publicity Director