It may not have been flawless, but the men’s hockey team inched one step closer to the ECAC title this weekend.

A night after surmounting two early goals by No. 12 seed Brown, the top-seeded Bulldogs closed out their best-of-three quarterfinal series Saturday with a 2-0 win at Ingalls Rink. In doing so, Yale (22- 7- 2, 15- 5- 2 ECAC) secures a spot in the ECAC tournament semifinals for the first time since the 1997-1998 season.

Forward linemates Mark Arcobello ’10 and Sean Backman ’10 scored power play goals for the Elis. Goalie Alec Richards ’09 made crucial saves in net during the third period, shutting out the Bears and finishing the night with 19 saves.

Following a lackluster start to Friday night’s contest, No. 10 Yale came out firing; the team finished the first frame with a 17-2 advantage in shots and a one-goal lead. Backman doubled that lead less than a minute into the second period, and despite improved play from the Bears (5-23-5, 3-15-4), Richards and the rest of the Eli defense held off the visitors for their third shutout of the season.

The Bulldogs will face the lowest-seeded advancing team next Friday in the semifinals of the ECAC tournament in Albany, N.Y.

No. 4 seed St. Lawrence advanced with a 5-3 victory over Quinnipiac on Saturday. No. 2 seed Cornell and No. 3 Seed Princeton will each play decisive game threes Sunday.