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Yale Faces No. 6 BU Tuesday

Yale Faces No. 6 BU Tuesday

Terriers Host Bulldogs


NEW HAVEN, CT – The Yale men's hockey team plays its third game in five days when it takes on No. 6 Boston University Tuesday night at 7. The game at Agganis Arena airs live on

Yale (4-5-2, 2-5-1 ECAC) had its four-game unbeaten streak end last weekend at home with an ECAC split. The Bulldogs beat RPI 7-3 before falling to Union 5-3 at Ingalls Rink. The Elis are a relatively young team that has been playing eight freshmen. A senior, John Hayden, leads the team with nine goals and 15 points. A junior leads the squad with 12 assists and a sophomore, Joe Snively, has seven goals and 15 points, while the primary goalie has been senior Patrick Spano.

The series that began in 1924 with a 6-0 Yale win at New Haven is knotted at 31-31-3 after the Elis won last year at New Haven. BU won 3-2 in OT at the 2015 NCAA Northeast Regional. Amazingly, five of the last seven meetings have gone to extra time including two of the last three. The series includes a 20-game Yale win streak, a (school-record) 19-1 Bulldog victory and seven overtime games, but the Yale-BU series had never had a neutral site meeting until the NCAA tournament. The Terriers have won four of the last five games.

Yale, in its home weekend split with the Capital District teams, combined for advantages in goals (10-8), shots (72-48) and power play goals (3-0). John Hayden had two goals and four points, Joe Snively notched three goals and four points while Ryan Hitchcock handed out four assists. Ted Hart went 2-1-3 and defenseman Adam Larkin dished out three helpers while another blueliner, Charlie Curti, blocked eight shots. Patrick Spano (21 saves) got the win in net against RPI. Sam Tucker (19 saves) was in goal the next night against the Dutchmen.

The Terriers (9-5-2, 4-2-2 HE), who have skated 10 NHL draft picks this season, are coming off a weekend split at Vermont. The Cats won 4-2 before the Terriers scored a 4-0 shutout in game two. Among the BU wins this season are Michigan, Harvard, Providence and Connecticut.

On Dec. 11, 2015, John Hayden scored twice and Ryan Hitchcock added another as Yale edged No. 11 BU 3-2 at the Whale. The Elis had a 31-29 edge in shots while Alex Lyon got the win in net with 27 saves.

The Bulldogs have a 15-day break from games for exams and the holiday. Their next game is Dec. 28 against Ottawa, an event that benefits the Yale New Haven Hospital Auxiliary Toy Closet. Bring a new toy to Ingalls that night in exchange for one GA ticket. The new year starts with three straight games against Hockey East teams. Two (Northeastern, Providence) are at the Whale before the Elis make their first visit to the XL Center in Hartford for the Jan. 7 UConn game.  

Nine freshmen joined the team this year and seven (4 F, 3 D) of them have been playing regularly. The nine rookies are the most Keith Allain has had, but there are 10 schools this year who have more. The most is Miami with 14.

John Hayden, who had two goals and four points last Friday, leads the nation in power-play goals, and is fourth with .82 goals per game overall. He has had a lot of great moments in his Yale career. One of the highlights may have been scoring two goals in 42 seconds at RPI to tie the game and then win it in OT on Nov. 5 this season. However, the essence of his impact on the Yale team was on display in one scoring sequence last season at Arizona State. The Yale forward, who led the Elis with 16 goals and five game-winners (4th in nation), blasted a Sun Devils defenseman with the puck in the slot and sent him sliding back into the goalie while Hayden grabbed the puck and flicked it top shelf. Hayden had the best season of his career last winter. He was one of Yale's top scorers the year before despite missing a few games to serve as alternate captain for the U.S. National Junior Team at the IIHF World Junior Championships. Hayden gets much of his inspiration from the memory of former HoneyBaked (AAA Club) teammate, the late Ian Jenkins, a goalie whose motto was "Have a Purpose" (HAP). Hayden and others are currently organizing fundraising events to raise money for the Big "E" Have a Purpose Foundation. The Greenwich, Conn., native, a third round NHL draft pick by Chicago, has a HAP 35 logo on his stick and wore a sticker on his helmet when he was with the U.S. National Development Program. Hayden has plenty of Team USA experience, including winning a silver medal at the 2013 IIHF U-18 World Championships in Sochi, Russia.

Junior forward Ryan Hitchcock, voted by his teammates as the top passer, is showing why he got the nod. Hitchcock is sixth in the nation with a 1.09 assist average.  He finished with 14 points in 22 games last season after helping Team USA to a bronze medal at the 2016 IIHF World Juniors in Finland. The U.S. team beat Sweden 8-3 to grab third place. Hitchcock, the third line left wing for the U.S. squad and the eighth Bulldog to play in this tournament, played in every game while becoming the first Eli to earn a medal at the world juniors.

Joe Snively, who has six goals over his last four games, made the all-tournament team at Notre Dame in late November. He is 17th in the nation in points with a 1.36 average. He was the 2015-16 ECAC Hockey and Ivy League Rookie of the Year after leading the Blue with 28 (10-18) points. Snively earned two conference rookie of the week honors and was January's ECAC Rookie of the Month. The Herndon, Va., native scored a goal against Dartmouth that was the No. 1 highlight on the NCAA Plays of the Week, while he enjoyed a career-high, three-point night. His 28 points were the most for an Eli rookie since Andrew Miller '13 had 34 in 2009-10. Snively, the former USHL (Sioux City) star, has a pair of two-goal games (UMass, Harvard). His second of the night at Boston on Nov. 6, 2015, tied the game with under a minute to play. He was 8th among Division I rookies with .96 points per game.

Senior Patrick Spano's first season as the starter has not been easy, especially with so many first-time regulars on the blueline and seven or eight rookies in the lineup each night. Spano (2.84 GAA, .892 SP) got the win on Dec. 9 against RPI with 21 saves. He combined for 48 saves (51 shots) at the Shillelagh Tournament and stopped a penalty shot in the win over Holy Cross. Spano, who speaks fluent Italian and French, has a scissor hand comparable to his catching glove, and some of his teammates trust him enough to cut their hair. He has been helping teammates with haircuts since his prep school days at Westminster. Spano played for Cowichan Valley in the British Columbia Hockey League before coming to New Haven.

Sophomore goalie Sam Tucker has made two (at SLU, Union) starts, both against nationally ranked teams... BU averages two more penalties a game than Yale… The Terriers' power play is operating at 16.7 percent compared to 21.3 for the Elis… BU's penalty-kill is at .908 while the Bulldogs are .857.

The superlatives survey among Bulldogs produced the following leaders:
    Strongest (pound for pound): Chris Izmirlian
    Fastest on skates: Ted Hart
    Hardest shot: Frankie DiChiara
    Best fore-checker: John Hayden
    Best passer: Ryan Hitchcock**
    Best sense of humor: Patrick Spano
    Best singer: Mike Doherty**
    Most talkative: Dan O'Keefe
    Biggest appetite: Frankie DiChiara*
    Most Unique Hobby: Chandler Lindstrand (Rubix Cube)
    Most soft spoken: Ted Hart
    Want your sister to date: Adam Larkin**
    Best dresser: Ryan Hitchcock**
    Most likely to become a coach: John Hayden/Tim Bonner
    *repeat leader

It is very possible that Evan and Mitchell Smith are the first twins to skate for the Yale men's hockey team. The Stouffville, Ontario, brothers have been skating on the same team since they began organized hockey and have been linemates since they were eight-years old. The identical twins, wearing jerseys No. 13 (Evan) and 14 (Mitchell), attended Salisbury School before playing for Dubuque in the USHL. Even teammates are challenged to tell the difference between the two, but Evan (6-0, 190) is listed as an inch taller and five pounds heavier than Mitchell.

The Yale roster includes players from 11 different states and two provinces. There are four players from both Massachusetts and Minnesota while Michigan and Ontario each have three. Connecticut, New York and New Jersey also have a pair. All-time Yale hockey rosters have included players from 30 different states. There are 23 Americans and four Canadians.

This winter the Bulldogs average 6-feet in height and 188 pounds. Yale is the eighth smallest in Division I for weight. The heaviest team in the country is Western Michigan (198.6), the tallest is Maine (6-1.5).

The United States Hockey League contributed 15 players to the Bulldog roster, the most by any league. Here is a breakdown of the 2016-17 roster: USHL – 15… Prep/High School – 4… EJHL – 2… BCHL – 2…USNDT – 2… NAHL – 2.

Yale has been to the national tournament seven times, including six under current head coach Keith Allain. Over the last five season, which included Yale's 2013 national title, the only ECAC Hockey school with more NCAA appearances than the Elis (3) is Quinnipiac (4). There are only seven (BC, Denver, North Dakota, Minnesota, UML, St. Cloud State) schools in the country with four or five in that span.

The Bulldogs have six seniors, including four forwards, a defenseman and a goalie. There are five juniors, seven sophomores, and nine newcomers. The seniors have hit the net 16 times this season; they are followed by the sophomores (12), juniors (3) and freshmen (3).

The current team includes 23 players who captained their teams prior to Yale, eight who captained other sports, 20 who were scholar-athlete award winners, 14 who graduated in the top 10 percent of their class, six National Honor Society members and three who were class presidents.

Sophomore Henry Hart's sister, Annie, was a five-time All-America skier at Dartmouth and is now a pro with SMS T2 ski team.... Mike Doherty's father, Michael Doherty, is Deputy Chief of the City of Boston Fire Department and serves on the game night staff for Boston Bruins games at the TD Bank Boston Garden… Frankie DiChiara, who broke a pane of Ingalls glass with a short backhander in practice as a junior, has a strong father; Ernie DiChiara is a former Connecticut State ADFPA Powerlifting Champion... The Yale roster doesn't have much of an international flair, but at least six languages can be spoken among the group.

All home regular season games at Ingalls Rink are broadcast live on the Ivy League Digital Network. A selection of those are simulcast on ESPN3. Go to to sign up for a game or a season subscription.

David S. Ingalls Rink, named after the World War I U.S. Navy Flying Ace, opened in 1958, was dedicated in 1959 and had major renovations in 2010. It's the eighth oldest active college hockey venue and the fifth oldest in ECAC Hockey. The best place to park on game night at Ingalls (a.k.a. The Whale) is the garage accessed by Prospect Street. There are press boxes on both sides of the building; broadcasters and visiting teams/media are on the Prospect side.

Eighteen former Bulldogs have played professionally this season.

Jean-Francois Boucher '08 - Cologne Sharks- DEL
Mark Arcobello '10 - Bern SC, Swiss-A Switzerland
Sean Backman '10 - Ontario Reign, AHL
Broc Little '11 - Linkopings HC, SweHL Sweden
Denny Kearney '11 - Bolzano HC- Austria
Brian O'Neill '12 - Jokerit Helsinki, KHL Finland
Andrew Miller '13 - Charlotte Checkers, AHL
Antoine Laganiere '13 - San Diego Gulls, AHL
Kenny Agostino '14 - St. Louis Blues, NHL/Chicago Wolves, AHL
Gus Young '14 - Missouri Mavericks, ECHL
Jeff Malcolm '14 - Greenville Swamp Rabbits, ECHL
Jesse Root '14 - Bolzano HC- Austria
Ryan Obuchowski '16 - Missouri Mavericks, ECHL
Carson Cooper '16 – Strasbourg - France
Mitch Witek '16 - Strasbourg- France
Matthew Beattie '16 - Strasbourg- France
Rob O'Gara '16 – Boston Bruins, NHL/Providence, AHL
Alex Lyon 17 - Philadelphia Flyers, NHL/Lehigh Valley, AHL



filed by Steve Conn, Yale Associate AD & Sports Publicity Director -