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The Quinnipiac Chronicle

The Student News Site of Quinnipiac University

The Quinnipiac Chronicle

The Student News Site of Quinnipiac University

The Quinnipiac Chronicle

Quinnipiac looks for three-peat, UConn seeks first Connecticut Ice Championship

Aidan Sheedy
Sophomore forward Anthony Cipollone takes a hit from Yale during Friday night’s semifinal matchup.

HARTFORD — It’s deja vu for the Connecticut Ice Tournament, as Quinnipiac and UConn are set to meet again to play for the state title Saturday night.

In 2022-23, the Bobcats hosted the Huskies at M&T Bank Arena in Hamden. Quinnipiac hoisted the trophy, but the venue has shifted this time around.

UConn now has an opportunity to defend its home ice Saturday night at the XL Center in Hartford. The question is, will it? 

Here’s a run-through of Friday’s matchups.

UConn v. Sacred Heart

The Huskies bludgeoned Sacred Heart 6-2 on Friday, using all 60 minutes to show off their dominant offense. 

“I’m not sure it was necessarily our best game that we’ve played all year long,” head coach Mike Cavanaugh said. “We found a way to be opportunistic, get some goals and move on to the finals.”

Almost immediately following puck drop, sophomore forward Samu Salminen netted a Michigan goal past Sacred Heart sophomore goaltender and Quinnipiac transfer Chase Clark. 

The Pioneers answered back within seconds after graduate student forward Kevin Lombardi found an opening past Huskies sophomore goaltender Arsenii Sergeev, tying the game at one.

But UConn had a fire burning inside its team, and it never went out. 

“We really did a good job of eliminating any type of second and third opportunities,” Cavanaugh said.

The Huskies racked up another five goals throughout the game, including two from senior forward Hudson Schandor. With less than three minutes remaining in the third frame, sophomore forward Ryan Tattle solidified the win with an empty-netter.

“We’ve been playing low-scoring games,” Cavanaugh said. “It’s more confidence for tomorrow. Tomorrow is going to be a hard battle.”

Heading into Saturday’s championship, UConn’s electric outing against Sacred Heart makes for an interesting contest against Quinnipiac. 

Quinnipiac v. Yale

The Bobcats have now defeated the Bulldogs 14 consecutive times dating back to 2018, but Friday night’s game was a little too close for comfort. 

Freshman forward Mason Marcellus was Quinnipiac’s holy grail, scoring the lone goal of the game and securing a 1-0 win to advance to the finals.

“They were fighting and clawing and scratching all game,” head coach Rand Pecknold said. 

But the Bobcats scratched back, doubling down defensively and keeping the Bulldogs from notching the equalizer.

“We’re excited that we’re part of this tournament,” Pecknold said. “Hopefully we keep it rolling.”

At this point, CT Ice is anyone’s title. UConn undoubtedly has home-ice advantage, but Quinnipiac is not new to winning on the road. 

The Bobcats displayed a rock-solid defense against Yale but lacked in producing offense while the Huskies have a strong offense and a secure back line in their arsenal. 

Tonight, will it be Quinnipiac’s third championship in a row or UConn’s first?

There can only be one king of Connecticut. Puck drop is set for 7 p.m.

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About the Contributors
Amanda Dronzek
Amanda Dronzek, Sports Editor
Aidan Sheedy
Aidan Sheedy, Photography Editor

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