POTSDAM, N.Y. — Clarkson bounced back from a Tuesday loss in style at home Friday as the Golden Knights dominated Yale en route to a 6-0 blanking in front of 2,732 fans at Cheel Arena.
Both Adam Campana and Joe Carosa picked up their first goals of the year, while Kerry Ellis-Toddington and Rob McFeeters each had two assists. All in all, 13 different Clarkson players netted points.
“We felt as though our supporting cast was lackluster [Tuesday], and tonight they were the difference in the hockey game,” Clarkson coach Mark Morris said. “They were the guys that really got us on the scoreboard, came up with the goals early on in the game that took it out of Yale’s hands.”
Probably the biggest surprise was Clarkson’s defense, which shut down Yale’s high-scoring line anchored by Hobey hopeful Jeff Hamilton. Hamilton had three shots on the night.
Gasper Sekelj started off the night for the Golden Knights. Two minutes, 37 seconds into the first frame, Sekelj recovered a rebound in front of goaltender Dan Lombard. Sekelj backhanded a shot that slid underneath the pads of Lombard to give Clarkson the 1-0 lead.
“I think it’s a big boost for the guys to [dominate early], because it relaxes everybody,” said Sekelj. “It was really important for us tonight. Against St. Lawrence we really didn’t play well in the first two periods. This was a really big game for us.”
Within five minutes the Golden Knights obtained their second goal of the game, as Campana picked up his first goal of the season when he placed a rebound past Lombard down low.
Clarkson’s third goal of the period came just over the midway mark. Matt Poapst was skating in along the right side of the ice, while teammate Rob McFeeters had the puck on the opposite side of the zone. McFeeters fed the puck down low to Poapst, and Poapst was able to get a stick on it, sending the puck into the open net.
Kevin O’Flaherty picked up the lone goal for Clarkson in the second period. Lombard had made the original save off a Clarkson shot, and had put his glove behind his legs in order to hold the puck and stop play. However, the referee had yet to blow the whistle, and O’Flaherty moved in for the kill by going for the puck, and nudged it into the goal, making it 4-0 at the 4:02 mark.
The Golden Knights rolled to their fifth goal of the game early in the third period. David Evans passed the puck to Carosa, and as Carosa skated in along the right-side boards, he fired a shot that beat Lombard stick side, picking up his first goal of the season and extending the Clarkson lead to five.
The final goal of the game came at the 18:57 mark. Kent Huskins took a shot from the middle of the zone that Lombard could not control, as the puck bounced off his pads and over his shoulder into the net, for a final of 6-0.
“Mark [Morris] said it was their best game of the year, and I hope so, because it was our worst,” Yale coach Tim Taylor said. “I’m very disappointed with all aspects of our game. We were very vulnerable defensively, [they] beat us in all the one-on-one battles, face-offs they dominated us.”
The match was for the most part a clean one, as only three penalties were called, all of which came near the end of the third period. Yale went 0-for-2 while Clarkson ended up 0-for-1 with the man advantage.
Mike Walsh posted his second shutout of the season, stopping 16 shots. On the other end of the ice, Dan Lombard stopped 29 shots and allowed six goals.
Saturday, Yale will travel to Canton, N.Y., to take on St. Lawrence, while Princeton will enter Potsdam to play in the ECAC game of the week against Clarkson.