A trio of freshmen highlighted one of the best efforts of the season for the Clarkson University Hockey team in its return to ECAC Hockey action as the Golden Knights knocked off defending national champion Yale 3-2 at Cheel Arena on Friday night.
Forward A. J Fossen (Maple Grove, MN) scored a career-high two goals, defenseman James de Haas (Mississauga, ONT) recorded two assists while also putting in a strong effort on the blueline and rookie goaltender Steve Perry (Ligonier, PA) was solid in the Clarkson crease with 17 saves as the Knights snapped the 8th-ranked Bulldogs' four-game unbeaten streak.
Playing in its first league game since December 6, the Knights, who entered the weekend ranked 14th in the national polls, improved their record to 14-7-2 overall and hold down third place in the ECAC Hockey standings with a 7-2 league mark. The Green and Gold close out a four-game home stand hosting Brown on Saturday at 7:00 p.m.
Clarkson outshot Yale 35-19, holding the Bulldogs (8-4-4, 3-3-3) to their lowest shot total of the season.
In a dominating first period, Clarkson took a 1-0 lead while outshooting the Bulldogs 13-5. The Knights stated out strong with two Grade "A" scoring opportunities by senior T.J. Moor (Lake St. Louis, MO) and sophomore defenseman Paul Geiger (Stouffville, ONT) in the opening 30 seconds. Clarkson held an 8-0 advantage in shots six minutes into the contest. The Green and Gold's efforts finally paid off midway through the frame when Fossen swept in a rebound off a shot by senior Will Frederick (Allison Park, PA) at 13:11 for his third collegiate goal. de Haas started the scoring play with a hard shot from the point.
Clarkson continued its solid showing in the second period, outshooting the visitors 14-6 in the stanza en route to a 2-1 lead after 40 minutes.
The Knights controlled play for much of the period, but it was Yale that struck first to tie the game early in the second. Gus Young took a pass out front from John Hayden and fired in a wrist shot from the left circle that found its way through a scrum in front and past Perry at 5:34.
Late in the period, Fossen scored his second goal of the night, to put the Knights on top. Stationed at the top of the crease, Fossen knocked in a rebound off a shot from the point by de Hass at 16:42. Sophomore T. J. Moor (Lake St. Louis, MO) also assisted.
Midway through the final period, the Knights built their margin to 3-1 when sophomore defenseman Kevin Tansey (Hammond, ONT), jumping into the play on the left wing, finished off a beautiful cross-ice pass from junior Joe Zarbo (Grand Island, NY) at 7:15 for the eventual game-winner. Freshman Perry D'Arrisso (Mississauga, ONT) also assisted.
Yale cut the lead to one with 3:39 left on a power-play tally by Ron O'Gara. With 63 seconds remaining in regulation play the Bulldogs pulled goaltender Alex Lyon for the extra attacker, but could not get another quality chance to even it.
Perry posted five first-period saves, five stops in the second frame and finished with seven over the fianl 20 minutes en route to his fifth victory of the season.
Clarkson was 0-of-2 on the power play, while Yale connected for one goal in three man-advantage opportunities.