TROY, N.Y. — He had been sick all week and missed a few days of practice, but the Rensselaer Engineers might want to see Marc Cavosie feel this way every week.
Friday night, all Cavosie did was score a hat trick to lead the Engineers to a 4-2 win over the Yale Bulldogs.
With Rensselaer’s other leading scorer, Matt Murley, out with the flu, Cavosie led the Engineers to a comeback in the second period to spur the win.
The Engineers trailed 2-1 after a shorthanded Luke Earl goal just six seconds into the second period and a goal midway through the second where Ryan Steeves came out of the corner and rolled a puck up the arm of Nathan Marsters to give the Elis the lead.
But just 13 seconds after Steeves scored, Carson Butterwick came down the right wing and fired a shot that eluded Dan Lombard to tie the game.
Just 47 seconds later a nifty passing play left Cavosie alone in front and he deposited Ryan Shields’ centering pass into the net for the 3-2 lead.
Only 2:06 later, Cavosie found himself alone in front of the net once again, deking Lombard twice before tucking the puck past him for his hat trick and the 4-2 lead.
“He’s that type of player where he can explode offensively,” said Engineer head coach Dan Fridgen. “He was upset at the beginning of the game, but he took that energy and he funneled it positively. You get frustrated and you take it out by putting the puck in the net. That can just drive a stake in a team.”
“He scored one of the best goals I have seen scored this season,” said Fridgen. “That was a great individual effort.”
“I knew I had to bring my ‘A’ game because Yale is off to a strong start to the season,” said Cavosie. “We knew they were a fast team and we came out, played our forecheck and our systems and it was nice to execute tonight.”
“He’s a great player in this league,” said Yale head coach Tim Taylor. “It was advertised to our players by me. I told them what he could do and it was a big, big factor in the game tonight, no doubt about it, especially with the absence of Murley. They have a 1-2 punch with those two guys; they only had a one punch tonight, and we couldn’t take advantage of that.”
In the first period, Cavosie scored on the power play after receiving a centering pass from Nolan Graham and one-timing the puck past Lombard.
“Tonight I had a lot of skating room, and that’s the way Yale plays, a lot of up and down so there were a lot of fast breaks,” said Cavosie. “When you play like that, you’re going to give up some breaks and that opened the door for us.”
After being outshot 11-0 before Cavosie’s goal, the Engineers clamped down defensively and began to control the Bulldogs, which became evident after the Engineers took the lead.
“Defensively they took the game away from us,” said Taylor. “Their defensemen stood us up and knocked us around a little bit. We couldn’t get the puck deep and that’s where we’re at our best and can use our speed. We’ve been able to do it against everybody we’ve played; we had some good shifts in the first period and some in the second period, but they were few and far between. My message to our guys was that we have to play 60 minutes.”
The Engineers also held the top two Bulldog lines to zero even-strength points en route to the win.
“Those two lines didn’t get much going tonight, but the other two lines got some pretty good shifts,” said Taylor. “We’ve got to get our big boys stepping up in big games and we didn’t get much out of those two lines.”
The Bulldogs (3-5-2, 3-4-2 ECAC) will travel to Union on Saturday while the Engineers (5-4-1, 2-1-1 ECAC) will continue to fight the flu bug and host Princeton.
“They put that aside from a physical perspective and they were strong mentally and they played an excellent hockey game,” said Fridgen. “We’ve been concentrating on shooting the puck and taking care of our own end from a defensive perspective, and every game I see an improvement as far as our execution is concerned.”