College Hockey:
LeNeveu Backstops Cornell Past Colgate

— Freshman goaltender Dave LeNeveu stopped 30 shots and junior winger Sam Paolini added a goal and an assist, as Cornell defeated Colgate 3-2 Saturday evening at Starr Rink. The last time Cornell swept the annual series with Colgate was the 1996-97 season.

Cornell is now 11-5-1 on the year and 7-2-1 in ECAC action, while Colgate falls to 6-13 overall and 4-6 in conference play.

The first period was quiet, with no scoring and just one penalty. The second period picked up a bit with both teams scoring one goal each. Colgate came out and seemed to have the momentum, scoring just 1:23 into the middle stanza. Scooter Smith fired a shot from the slot and Cornell goalie LeNeveu made the initial stop. LeNeveu didn’t have the puck, though, and Paul Kelley was there to poke it just inside the post for the Raiders opening score of the game.

After missing out on its first power-play chance of the game early in the period, Cornell’s special teams came through the second time around. With Dmitry Yashin in the penalty box for tripping the Big Red’s top unit turned in its usual performance. Doug Murray passed the puck to Stephen Baby, who fired a one-timer rifle at Colgate netminder David Cann. Paolini came up with the bullseye when he directed the shot into the back of the net for the extra-man sco re at 11:48.

The second period ended in a 1-all tie, but the Big Red left the ice just 33 seconds into its third power-play chance of the game. The power play worked to start of the third period with Cornell getti ng on the board at 1:21. Six seconds remained on the extra-man chance when Ryan Vesce scored for the Big Red. Murray took the initial shot and Paolini got a piece of it, but Cann deflected it to Vesce, who fired it right into the back of the net. Less than 1:30 later Cornell added its third goal of the night, this one an even-strength opportunity.

With just about everyone in the right faceoff circle the puck went into the air and over Cann’s head. It looked like it was going to go onto the top of the net, but it fell right behind Cann and across the goal line for the score. Krzysztof Wieckowski was credited with the goal, while Travis Bell and Kelly Hughes were each given assists.

Colgate took back some of the emotional swing Cornell had gained with the two quick goals, with a goal at 3:53. Referee Jeff Fulton’s arm went into the air to call a Big Red penalty, but Colgate kept control of the puck along the left boards. Just as Cann had reached the bench to try and get an extra skater on the ice, Rob Brown wristed a shot past LeNeveu for the Raiders’ second goal of the game.

The Raiders continued to fight hard throughout the third period and fired 11 total shots at LeNeveu in the period. The Big Red held off the late charge and skated away with the 3-2 win.

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