Bulldogs Buzz in Boston

Yale Beats Harvard 5-1

BOSTON, Mass. – Outshooting opponents doesn't always produce enough goals to come out on top, but tonight it did at Bright Hockey Center. The Yale men's hockey team got two goals each from Jesse Root (Pittsburgh, Pa.) and Kenny Agostino (Flanders, NJ) and outshot No. 13 Harvard 49-29 on the way to 5-1 win before 2,736 in ECAC play.

The Bulldogs (2-1-1, 1-1-0 ECAC) were buzzing the minute they stepped on the ice. They started out buzzing with anger after Friday night's loss. Fifteen different players accounted for the season-high 49 shots, while the line of Agostino (3 points), Root and Andrew Miller (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.) accounted for four of the five Yale tallies.

Meanwhile, Yale senior goalie Jeff Malcolm (Lethbridge, Alb.) was standing on his head against his team's archrival. He made 28 saves, including 10 in the third, and blanked the Cantabs on four power plays. Many of his stops were quality scoring chances.

Raphael Girard was stopping shots all over the place for two periods for Harvard (2-1-0, 1-1-0) before the visitors cashed in for three goals in the third. He finished with 44 saves.

Yale killed off a penalty that began 19 seconds into the game and used that momentum to grab the early lead. The Eli captain created the opportunity. Miller, who had three assists, carried in over the blueline and cut to the high slot before making the defense move to the right and sending the puck to his left for  Root. The junior forward held for a moment, with a defender on him, and fired a rising wrister top shelf at 3:20. Rob O'Gara (Nesconset, NY) also picked up an assist on the play.

"We had a quick start, but we also had to kill three penalties in the first 12 minutes of the game," said Keith Allain '80, Yale's Malcolm G. Chace Head Coach. "We were more aggressive up ice and protected the puck better tonight. That's important because Harvard is a great transition team."

The Crimson evened things midway through the first after a Malcolm save along the left post. The puck came out to the edge of the crease for Kyle Criscuolo, who easily deposited it into the right side.

The second period began like the first with the Blue grabbing the lead and Root causing the damage, also in the fourth minute. The difference was Yale's barrage (19) of shots on net. The only problem for the visitors was that it produced only one tally.

"We really came out ticked off about last night. That was important and we were pressing from the start," said Root. "(Andrew) Miller finds you wherever you go, and Kenny (Agostino) protects the puck so well. We got open for each other a lot."

Agostino sent the puck to the point for Colin Dueck (Calgary, Alb.), who fired on target. Root, fighting through maze of Crimson sticks, won the battle and slapped the puck past Girard at 3:27

Malcolm made the slim margin stand through the rest of the period by coming up with a variety of impressive saves. His great glove save on Colin Blackwell midway through the period began a string of five straight highlight swipes. He turned aside a pair of point-blank shots with quick moves late in the frame.

"Jeff was really good tonight. Harvard had some golden opportunities, and there were good players with golden opportunities and he came up with big stops," said Allain, a former Yale goalie.

"You can't say enough about Jeff Malcolm tonight. He stood tall. He made a couple of huge saves that turned the tide for us," said Root.

Trent Ruffolo (Coral Springs, Fla.) got his first of the year to give the Elis a two-goal cushion at 4:39. Gus Young (Dedham, Mass.) started the sequence by passing the puck to Clinton Bourbonais (Dexter, Mich.). It went quickly from there to the low slot for Ruffolo before a nasty wrister bounced off Girard's body and into the back of the net.

Another great leg save by Malcolm turned into Yale's fourth goal. Tommy Fallen (Plymouth, Minn.) cleared the rebound up to Miller, who skated almost the length of the ice until the Crimson goalie committed slightly toward him. That's when he slipped it over to Agostino for an easy one-timer.

Agostino also converted another pretty Miller pass with 6.9 seconds left to finish off the victory and give his line eight points.

"We have a couple of lines that can produce offense. They (Agostino, Root, Miller) complement each other well and work well together. As a result, they create opportunities," said Allain.

 

BULLDOG BITES

Root scored his two goals on four shots on target; Agostino had seven shots and two tallies… The only change in the lineup from Friday was freshman Charles Orzetti (Wychoff, NJ) in for sophomore Alex Ward at forward… Rob O'Gara, a Boston Bruins draft pick, was interviewed by bostonbruins.com after the game… Agostino and Antoine Laganiere (Ile Cadieux, Que.) were interviewed by hockeyfutures.com.

 

Report filed by Steve Conn, Yale Sports Publicity Director

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