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FNF: Harvard at Colgate - Men's Hockey

ECAC hockey.
Colgate outshot the Crimson, 34-24, but couldn’t get one by the Harvard goaltender in the final two periods and dropped a tough 2-1 decision.

The Raiders (16-12-3, 12-6-3 ECAC Hockey) didn’t drop in the conference standings and remained second as Cornell lost to Dartmouth on Friday night. Colgate cannot fall lower than third with one game to go.

Darcy Murphy had the lone goal for Colgate in the first period with assists to Joe Wilson and Ryan Johnston. Charlie Finn made 22 saves in net with 12 coming in the first period.

Harvard (10-14-4, 6-11-4 ECAC Hockey) saw Steve Michalek stand on his head with 33 saves and 24 of them came in the first and second periods. Danny Fick scored his first collegiate goal as a senior. His goal tied the game at 1-1 in the opening frame. Phil Zielonka tallied the gamewinner in the third off a pass from Greg Guzzo.

The Raiders struck first on the power play with 12:21 left in the opening period. Johnston gained the zone and flicked the puck to Wilson. He charged in below the dots and dropped a pass to Murphy. The team leader in goals added to his total with a blast that rang off the post and in. For Murphy, it was his 15th of the season and his fifth on the power play, which is a career high.

Harvard answered with just over two minutes left in the frame with Fick scoring his first collegiate goal with quick swat off a Luke Esposito pass. The Crimson rushed up ice as a Colgate power play expired, which resulted in a 3-on-2. Esposito gained the zone and made short pass to Fick in front of the net and he jammed it home to tie the game at 1-1.

The two teams combined for 28 shots in the first 20 minutes, but the goalies were on their game. Michalek made back-to-back glove stops prior to the Crimson goal, while Finn had a sprawling stop and a toe save to keep Harvard off the board early in the contest.

The second period belonged to the netminders. Michalek had 10 stops, but easily made four or five highlight stops on pucks in front of the net. Kyle Baun had a golden chance late in the frame. He was at the side of the net and got a cross-ice pass from Tyson Spink. He couldn’t get a lot of wood on the shot and Michalek made a great stop coming across the crease. Finn had nine stops in the stanza with a couple of impressive glove stops.

Harvard took the lead with 13:32 left in the game with Zielonka scoring off a Colgate a turnover in its own zone. The Raiders tried a cross-ice pass that Guzzo knocked down at the blueline. He found Zielonka in front and he put it home for the 2-1 lead.

The Crimson packed it in and ran the trap in the neutral zone to hang on. Colgate had a few chances to tie the game, including a power play late in the game, but Michalek continued to keep the Raiders out of the net to earn the 2-1 win.

The Raiders scored once on the power play in five chances and kept the Crimson off the board on four opportunities. Colgate was able to killed off a 5-on-3 power play as well.

Senior night is up next for the Raiders tomorrow night at Starr Rink as Colgate honors Eric Mihalik and Mike McCann prior to the game. Tickets are still available and can be purchased one hour before game time.

Story by Colgate Athletics.
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