MEN’S ICE HOCKEY: Elis struggle at Connecticut Ice Tournament
The Yale men’s hockey team failed to claim a win last weekend, falling 6-1 to UConn and 4-3 to Sacred Heart.
The Yale men’s hockey team (3-14-4, 2-10-2 ECAC) fell to both the University of Connecticut (16-8-3, 10-6-2 HEA) and Sacred Heart University (13-13). -10-2, 8-3-1 AHA) last weekend at the Connecticut Ice Tournament with 6-1 and 4-3, respectively.
After Friday’s blowout loss to the No. 12 Huskies, the Bulldogs rebounded and played a much more competitive game against Sacred Heart.
“I thought we responded well to adversity,” said striker Briggs Gammill ’25 said. “Although we didn’t get the result we wanted, we played hard until the end.”
In the matchup against the Huskies, UConn forward and former Yale men’s hockey player Justin Pearson ’22 scored the first goal just 8:19 in the first frame.
Pearson, a recent Yale grad and now a graduate student at UConn, has scored nine goals for the Huskies so far this season. In addition to his early goal, he also managed an assist against his former team.
With 2:17 left in the third, UConn forward Nick Capone and Chase Bradley forward Ryan Tverberg helped score their team’s second goal of the night.
“Big points in the general classification are at stake [in our next games]” said defense attorney Kieran O’Hearn ’25. “It’s great to be back on home ice at the Whale [this weekend].”
The Huskies scored four more goals in the second frame of the contest, including two within the first five minutes. Both points came on the power play. The next two goals of the period came in the last four minutes. Forwards Matthew Wood and Samu Salminen and defenders Roman Kinal and Jake Veilleux were the scorers.
On the power play 8:57 in the last frame, Yale forward Quinton Ong ’23 finally pushed a Goal through for the Bulldogs after a rebound, with forward Ian Carpentier ’24 and Will Dineen ’25, each picking up an assist for the game.
Yale goaltender Luke Pearson ’25, who had a .941 save rate over nine starts on the night, started in the net and made a total of 20 saves in the first two thirds. Goalkeeper Nathan Reid ’24, taking over in the third period, made eight saves and denied the Huskies another goal.
The Elis had a total of 26 shots during the game. Defenseman Mike Young ’23 led the team with four shots on goal, followed by Ong and Dineen, who had three shots on goal each.
“In practice ahead of St. Lawrence and Clarkson, I think we’re going to focus on the defensive side of the game,” Gammill said. “We struggled with our defensive zone last weekend and [are] I want to take a step forward next weekend.”
Against Sacred Heart the following day, the Pioneers started the contest at 6:47; Forward Braeden Tuck and defender Julian Kislin assisted forward Daniel Ebrahim to give Sacred Heart a 1-0 advantage.
However, the Blue and Whites responded quickly less than four minutes later when Carpentier scored on the power play, assisted by forward Kalen Szeto ’26 and defender Ryan Conroy ’24.
“We have a lot of room for improvement,” head coach Keith Allain ’80 wrote in the News. “The team is fully committed to doing what is necessary to be the best we can be every day.”
However, Sacred Heart’s power play hit back in the second period. After a scoreless first 18 minutes of the frame, forward Ryan Steele took the puck between the net and the left circle and redirected it to the Pioneers’ second point at the left post.
The Pioneers struck again at halftime with just 28 seconds remaining. Forward Neil Shea shot with a 3-on-1 charge and forward Austin Magera took the opportunity to put it away.
Sacred Heart extended their lead to 4-1 just under three minutes into the last frame when defender Hunter Sansbury shot the puck under the bar from the right. Yale put the score back within reach 47 seconds later, however, when defenseman Ryan Carmichael shot into the high slot in ’23 to score the Bulldogs’ second goal of the game.
The Elis added another goal to their score at 11:33 when forward David Chen ’26 got past SHU goaltender Brandon Milberg after an assist from forward Niklas Allain ’24 and Gammill. Despite a frenetic final push from the Bulldogs, neither Yale nor Sacred Heart managed to score again throughout the matchup, keeping the final score 4-3.
Reid was pulled out of goal to add the extra player with 24 seconds left in the game, finishing the contest with a total of 35 saves.
“St. Lawrence and Clarkson are big games for our group,” O’Hearn said. “Both teams play hard and fast, so it will be important to be good [and] defensively solid in our own end.”
The Bulldogs will host two teams at Ingalls Rink this weekend. Yale meets Clarkson University on February 3 and St. Lawrence on February 4.
Grayson Lambert contributed reporting.