SCHENECTADY, N.Y. — In front of a crowd of 2,169 at Messa Rink, Harvard goaltender Ryan Carroll stole the show as he shut down Union’s prolific offense, making 48 saves in the Crimson’s 4-1 win.
The loss marks the first ECAC loss for the Dutchmen this season and extends the Crimson’s ECAC winning streak to four games.
“It’s nice to come in on the road and get the win,” said Carroll. “It’s fun playing ranked teams and knocking somebody off.”
Harvard head coach Ted Donato was very pleased with the way Carroll played tonight.
“He looks very comfortable and confident in net,” said Donato. “He’s given us a boost.”
The Dutchmen controlled the play in the first two periods of the game as they outshot the Crimson 37-14, including 21-6 in the second period. But it was the Crimson who headed into the third period with a 2-1 lead.
Union opened up the scoring 3:20 into the second frame when Jason Walters capitalized with 11 seconds remaining in Louis Leblanc’s penalty. Walters extended his point streak to 14 games when he received a pass from Mike Schreiber at the right point and one-timed the puck past Carroll for a power-play goal.
But Harvard evened up the score a little over two minutes later when they capitalized on their first scoring opportunity of the period.
The goal occurred when Eric Kroshus drove to the net and flipped a backhand shot from the right of Union goaltender Keith Kinkaid, who kicked out the shot with his left pad towards the slot where Connor Morrison flew in and deposited the puck into the open net.
“Kroshus made a nice play on the goal and Morrison was Johnny on the spot,” said Donato.
Kroshus was in the middle of the action again when he put the Crimson on top with 7:53 left in the period when he tipped in a shot by Alex Biega from the right point to give his team a 2-1 lead going into the third period.
The Dutchmen tried frantically to tie the score as they had a few stellar scoring in the final period, but they were unable to solve Carroll.
“He was the big difference in the game,” said Union head coach Nate Leaman.
Freshman Danny Biega put the game out of reach with 1:07 left in the contest when he scored an empty-net goal on the power play for his first career goal. Alex Fallstrom followed suit as he put in another goal with the net vacated while short-handed with 23.1 seconds to go.
“We just didn’t bury down and bury,” said Union forward Jason Walters. “I think we did create a lot (of opportunities) but we didn’t get to the net.”
Even though disappointed with the loss, Leaman did not seem too concerned.
“You’re not going to go through this league undefeated,” he said.
“Our team found a way to win,” said Donato. “And at this point it’s a good sign.”
Union (13-5-5 overall, 7-1-3 in the ECAC) will welcome in Dartmouth tomorrow night, while Harvard (5-13-0, 3-8-0) travels to Troy to take on RPI.