Though the Yale basketball team lost to Harvard on Friday, the Bulldogs exacted their revenge on the ice, beating Harvard 4–0 and 2–1 on Friday and Saturday, respectively.
Because they won the first round series, the Elis will now head to the ECAC quarterfinals, where they will face No. 6 Quinnipiac. No. 16 Yale (17–9–5, 10–8–4 ECAC) and Harvard (10–17–4, 6–12–4) came into the weekend having played each other three times on the season, with the Cantabs eking out a tie in the first matchup and the Bulldogs comfortably winning the last two.
Friday’s game was never in doubt. Two of Yale’s seniors, captain Jesse Root ’14 and defenseman Gus Young ’14, scored in a 2:09 span in the first period to put Yale in front. In the second period, forward Cody Learned ’16 raced to a loose puck while on the penalty kill and slotted it past goalie Steve Michalek for a short-handed goal to extend the lead to three.
After that goal, Harvard coach Ted Donato pulled Michalek for senior Raphael Girard, but the damage had already been done. Forward Carson Cooper ’16 made the final score 4–0 with a third period goal.
The victory was the second consecutive shutout for goaltender Alex Lyon ’17. The Minnesota native saved all 24 shots he faced for his third career shutout.
Lyon maintained his recent form in Saturday’s game as well, but a power play in the first period gave Harvard an early 1–0 lead. The goal was the first allowed by Yale in its last 142:39 minutes of hockey.
But after a scoreless second period, the Yale attack finally broke through in the third period. Forward Stu Wilson ’16 received a pass from forward Anthony Day ’15 and fired a shot above Girard to tie the score. The goal came on a delayed penalty from Harvard, and the ensuing power play saw success through the efforts of Root and fellow senior Kenny Agostino ’14. Root’s shot bounced off Agostino and found its way into the net, providing what became the game-winning goal for the Elis and finishing the senior class’ Ingalls career in style.
The Bulldogs play a best-of-three series this weekend against the Bobcats (22–8–6, 12–6–4), with the victor advancing to the conference semifinals. In the teams’ two games this season, Quinnipiac has come out ahead, managing a 3–3 tie in November despite a lopsided 51–20 shot advantage and dominating the Elis 4–0 at Ingalls Rink on Valentine’s Day.
These two rivals have an illustrious history in the recent past. Last year, a 3–0 loss to Quinnipiac in the ECAC tournament third-place game almost pushed the Bulldogs out of the NCAA Tournament. Of course, Yale got the last laugh with a 4–0 victory in the national championship game.
The games on Friday and Saturday will start at 7:00 p.m., with Sunday’s game also starting at 7:00 p.m. if necessary. All games will be played at High Points Solution Arena in Hamden, Conn.