One Is All It Takes
Today’s win by Massachusetts was the ninth 1-0 final in NCAA tournament history but the seventh since 2003. Two others were overtime games: last year’s epic three-OT win by Wisconsin over Cornell in the Midwest Regional Final and Minnesota’s 2005 West Regional Semifinal win over Maine.
“There’s a thin line between winning and losing,” said UMass goalie Jon Quick. “We learned it last week [in an overtime loss to New Hampshire] and we learned it today.”
Coming into this afternoon’s game, Clarkson had won five straight — including the ECACHL title in a come back win over Quinnipiac — and was 9-1-1 since February. The rest of the bracket came into the weekend with losses in their previous games: UMass with one, St. Cloud State with two, and Maine, four straight.
Clarkson In The Tournament
This was Clarkson’s first trip to the NCAA tournament since George Roll took the helm in 2003. The last trip for the Golden Knights was in 1999. Clarkson ended the drought after nine trips to the NCAAs in the ten years of the 1990s.
The last win for Clarkson in the tournament was during Roll’s final year as an assistant coach before taking the reigns at D-III Oswego, a 6-1 win over Western Michigan in the East Regional in Albany, N.Y. on March 22, 1996. The Knights have lost their last five NCAA playoff games.
This season marks the third time that Clarkson has been the top seed in the East Regional; the other two were in 1981 and 1997.
With today’s loss, Clarkson is 12-23-1 in NCAA play since 1957. The Golden Knights have never won a title, but were runners-up in 1962, 1966 and 1970.
Clarkson’s last overtime win in the NCAAs was over Harvard, 2-1, in 1957.
First Time For UMass
UMass made its first NCAA appearance in today’s contest. With that, Don “Toot” Cahoon became the 13th D-I coach to take two different teams to the NCAAs, having led Princeton to the tournament in 1998. Cahoon also participated in the tournament as a left wing for Boston University when the Terriers won the title in 1971 and 1972.
A Short History
Today’s game was just the fourth meeting between these two schools, with UMass now holding a 3-0-1 record. The tie came this season as the Minutemen hosted the Knights on Oct. 14, playing to a 3-3 draw.
UMass defenseman David Leaderer was on the ice today in front of a hometown crowd. The junior played for two years at Greece Arcadia High School in suburban Rochester before playing for the Boston Jr. Bruins.
2,000 Minute Men
UMass goalie Jon Quick and Clarkson’s David Leggio are two of eight D-I goaltenders to log more than 2,000 minutes in net this season. Leggio and Quick sported nearly identical stats entering the contest: both had 2.20 GAA, Leggio a .929 save percentage to Quick’s .928, and both had two shutouts this season. Both also set school records for saves in a season today, Leggio with 1,037 and Quick with 1,020.
“Both goalies were on the top of their game today,” said Clarkson coach George Roll.
Shut out today, Clarkson entered the game with the sixth best offense in the country, with five players over 30 points and an average of 3.58 goals per game.
About the shutout performance by Quick, UMass coach Don “Toot” Cahoon said, “I don’t know if there’s a better athlete in that position anyhwere.”