Bobcats travel to Harvard for QF series

Brian Stevenson

The men’s ice hockey team takes their playoff run to Cambridge, Mass. this weekend in a best-of-three ECAC quarterfinal playoff series against Harvard.

In last weekend’s first round series against Brown, the Bobcats defeated the Bears 7-6 in overtime Friday night and swept the series with a 7-1 victory Saturday night.

After being held to just nine goals during a six game losing streak before last weekend, the Bobcat offense exploded for seven each night, scoring the most goals in a two-game ECAC playoffs series since Cornell in 1996.

Goals could be at more of a premium at Bridge Hockey Center for the Bobcats this weekend. The Crimson allowed a league-low 41 goals in 22 league games during the regular season and goaltender Kyle Richter led the ECAC in goals against average and save percentage, allowing just 1.82 goals per game and saving 93.5% of shots in conference play.

Since joining the ECAC in the fall of 2005, the Bobcats are 1-3-2 against the Crimson. The lone victory came at the Hartford Civic Center in the program’s ECAC opener on Nov. 4, 2005. The Bobcats have yet to earn a point in games at Cambridge, falling all three times.

The Bobcats will look to seniors Jamie Bates and Ben Nelson, along with junior linemate Bryan Leitch, to continue a torrid scoring stretch they started last weekend. The trio, who have all scored their 100th career points this season, combined for seven goals and eight assists against Brown in the first round.

A key match up this weekend could be when the Bobcats are on the power play. The Bobcats, who were fourth in the league with 19 power play goals, converted 4-of-12 chances with the man advantage against Brown. On the other hand, the Crimson led the ECAC in penalty killing, allowing nine goals on 103 chances.

The teams will skate Friday and Saturday night at 7 p.m., with a third game Sunday at the same time, if necessary.