NEW HAVEN, Conn. — A penalty-filled night and a battle of special teams went to the visitors in an ECAC Hockey League men’s game at Ingalls Rink. David Cayer and Nick Dodge each had a goal and three assists as the Golden Knights scored four times on nine power plays to take a 4-1 win over No. 15 Yale.
Yale (6-3-1, 3-2 ECACHL), which outshot the Knights 36-29, had its worst night on the power play going scoreless on 13 attempts. That was the difference in the game. Clarkson (9-5-1, 3-2) lit the lamp on each of its substantial two-man advantages and the Bulldogs had just as many opportunities at five-on-three.
Alec Richards, who made 25 saves and did not allow an even-strength goal, was victimized by an opportunistic power-play unit. David Leggio stopped 35 shots and gave up a five-on-five score.
“They scored on the power play and we didn’t,” said Keith Allain, Yale head coach, summing up the game. “Statistically, that was the best power play we faced all year, and they showed us why tonight.”
Both teams put nine shots on net in a scoreless first period that included four Yale power-play chances (and a two-man advantage for 66 seconds) and one for the visitors.
Yale was moving the puck well on another power play when Bulldog freshman center Chris Cahill was called for a five-minute hitting from behind major and tossed from the game. Twenty-four seconds later junior forward Jean-Francois Boucher picked up a minor plus a10-minute misconduct. This began the downward spiral for the Elis.
Grant Clitsome, Cayer and Dodge worked together to take advantage of the penalties and give Clarkson a 2-0 lead in the second. Cayer’s pass from near the goal line resulted in the first tally of the night. Clitsome (3rd goal) one-timed the feed low and inside the near post from the top of the left circle with the two-man advantage at 5:15.
Still on the 5-on-3 advantage, the Knights made it 2-0 at 7:42 on Cayer’s slapshot (8th) from the top of the other circle. After taking a pass from Clitsome, Cayer’s rising shot hit the back of the net after going past Richards’ glove.
The lead increased to three goals with 1:36 left in the middle frame. Dodge’s crossing pass from the goal line to the middle of the right circle was banged home by Steve Zalewski (11th) with Clarkson up a man.
The Bulldogs finally got on the board with 1:01 left in the second. Sean Backman’s shot was saved but the rebound sat on the doorstep. Mark Arcobello (4th) skated across the top of the crease and flicked the puck over a fallen Leggio to send the home team into intermission with temporary momentum.
Clarkson, who will travel to Brown on Saturday, put the game away early in the third period after a pair of questionable minor penalties gave the visitors another two-man advantage. This time it was Dodge’s turn to grab a piece of the pie. His snap shot from the left dot whizzed past the Bulldog netminder at 3:51.
“They had a couple of seeing-eyed shots tonight. You shoot like that and you are going to score some goals,” said Allain, whose Bulldogs host St. Lawrence on Saturday at 7 p.m. “I’m please with our effort but it was not enough of an intelligent effort.”