ECAC West Weekend Recap

Hobart earned the gold medal over the weekend in the inaugural Cape Cod Lighthouse College Hockey Invitational Tournament with victories over Babson and Amherst.  The weekend got off to a rough start Saturday when Trevor Hines scored twice in the opening nine minutes to give Babson an early 2-0 lead.
The Statesmen rallied and stayed with Babson, only trailing 3-2 as the second period wound down.  The game turned when Tommy Fiorentino scored his second goal of the game with 33 seconds left in the second period and Bronson Kovacs threw in another 1:56 into the third.  The pair of goals gave Hobart its first lead of the game, and the Statesmen held on for an eventual 5-3 victory.
In Sunday’s championship game, it was Hobart that came out with a jump.  Greg Ciciola scored just 24 seconds into the game against Amherst and the Statesmen were off to the races.  Amherst tied it early in the second period, but David Stevens and Bobby Hannah each tallied their first goals of the season to give Hobart the 3-1 victory and tournament title.
Goaltender Marty Ausserhofer was named tournament MVP after stopping 40 of 42 shots on goal in a little more than five periods of work in net.  Kovacs and Fiorentino were also named to the All-Tournament team.
Neumann also swept its nonconference weekend against Cortland.  Friday’s game was a close affair at the end.  Neumann pushed to a 3-0 lead before Cortland came storming back with a pair of goals late in the third period.  The Knights held on, though, for the 3-2 victory.
Saturday’s rematch was a shootout.  Neumann roared out to a 4-0 lead just nine minutes into the contest.  Then the two teams started trading goals leading to an eventual 10-5 win for the Knights.
Elmira split its weekend in arguably the toughest tournament in the nation this season.  The Soaring Eagles opened up the Primelink Tournament against host Middlebury on Friday. 
“I’ve been involved in the Primelink before at Potsdam, so I kind of knew how good the competition was and the organization of the tournament,” said Elmira coach Aaron Saul.  “It is top notch.  The way it worked out this year with the four teams in the top eleven in the country was great.”
Elmira took advantage of its opportunities midway through the first period, scoring three goals in a 1:45 span to take a 3-0 lead.  Of course the Panthers weren’t done, tallying a goal late in the first and early in the second to make it a close 3-2 game.
Norwich special teams proved too much for Elmira in the championship game on Saturday.  The Cadets scored three power-play goals in the first period, outshooting Elmira 18-3, and then rolled to a 5-2 win. 
“The first minutes were good back and forth hockey, but we got into penalty trouble and they got a ton of shots on the power play,” said Saul.
 McDonald and Martin Lee made the All-Tournament team.
Manhattanville had the least success of any ECAC West team this past week.  The Valiants lost a game Tuesday against Western New England, 3-2, despite holding a 37-27 shot advantage.  Luc Van Netter and Adam Young scored for Manhattanville, but it wasn’t enough.
The Valiants again built a solid 42-29 shot advantage against Williams on Sunday, but this time eked out a 1-1 tie in dramatic fashion.  Van Netter tipped in a shot from the point by Dillon O’Hara directly off a faceoff with only six minutes remaining in the contest to earn the tie.  Manhattanville almost won the game when Evan Michaluk threw in a rebound with just under a minute remaining in the third period, but the net was dislodged just before the puck crossed the goal line and the score was waved off.