If there were any questions as to whether or not Quinnipiac’s men’s ice hockey team would have a strong offense without graduates Brandon Wong and Eric Lampe, they were answered Sunday.
The Bobcats scored seven goals, including five unanswered, to put away St. Thomas 7-3 in their first home exhibition game of the year.
“We’re happy to get a win,” Quinnipiac head coach Rand Pecknold said. “We played pretty well, our power play was very good, and we’re getting pucks on net and getting some good skill work done.”
Sophomore defenseman Mike Dalhuisen, who had one goal all of last year, led Quinnipiac with two goals, including one 10 seconds before the end of the second period. With two Bobcats in the box, Dalhuisen took the puck from above the blue line, skated toward the net, and then moved to the right part of the crease to put it in net.
“When I get the puck in the point and there’s a lane there I’ll shoot it, and that’s what happened,” Dalhuisen said.
Dalhuisen’s second goal came early in the third period to give the Bobcats a 5-1 lead. He took a shot from the blue line off a Zach Tolkinen pass that traveled past several players by the crease and went past goalie Charles Lavigne into the net.
After St. Thomas forward Randy Cameron scored an unassisted goal 3:41 into the first period, the Bobcats skated up the ice. Zack Currie passed it to Connor Jones, who hopped over a defender’s stick and proceeded to pass it to junior captain Scott Zurevinski who scored the first Bobcat goal.
Jones scored 5:41 into the second period when he received a pass from his brother, Kellen, and put it past Lavigne.
Pecknold spoke very highly of the Jones brothers and believes they have a lot of potential.
“They’re dynamic players, they’re high-end kids and I think they showed that tonight,” Pecknold said. “They’re going to get better and better as the season goes on.”
Sophomore goalie Eric Hartzell got the start and the win for the Bobcats, saving seven shots before he was lifted for senior Pat McGann with 11 minutes to go in the third period. McGann stopped two of the three shots that the Tommies took after he replaced Hartzell.
Clay Harvey and Yuri Bouharevich assisted for Russell Goodman’s goal in the second period to give the Bobcats a 3-1 lead. Freshman John Dunbar and junior Spencer Heichman also helped the Bobcat offense by scoring the sixth and seventh goals, assisted by D’Arcy Oakes and Bobby Tyson, respectively.
For St. Thomas, Matt Eagles took a shot that trickled past Hartzell 4:59 into the third period for the team’s second goal. Erick Tremblay assisted on Jordan Scott’s goal to give St. Thomas its third and final goal of the game late in the third.
Late in the third period the game got out of hand. After a hard hit on Bouharevich, a fight ensued that resulted in five players receiving 10-minute game misconducts for their actions in the brawl. Pecknold said there was no update on the junior after the game.
“We’re going to have to regroup and see who’s healthy and who’s not,” Pecknold said Sunday.
Quinnipiac’s regular season begins Friday when they take on the Ohio State Buckeyes, a team the Bobcats swept last year.
“We’re very confident this year that this team can do a lot of stuff,” Dalhuisen said.
Photo credit: Vanessa Stier