Knights tie Quinnipiac, finish fifth in ECAC hockey
With perhaps its best defensive effort of the season, the Clarkson University Hockey team skated to a 1-1 tie against nationally-ranked Quinnipiac, one of the top offensive teams in the country, at Cheel Arena on Saturday to finish out the regular season on a three-game unbeaten streak.
Clarkson, which closed out its best regular season in six years, posted a fifth-place 11-9-2 ECAC Hockey mark. The Golden Knights, who will host Princeton in a first-round, best of three-game playoff series next weekend at Cheel, stand at 18-14-4. Clarkson swept the regular-season series from Princeton, 4-3 in New Jersey on February 8 and 3-1 on Friday in Potsdam.Clarkson held the high-powered Quinnipiac offense to just one goal on a season low 20 shots on the Knights' Senior Night. The Bobcats (22-8-6, 12-6-4) came into the night averaging 3.63 goals per game, second best in the country. Quinnipiac, which was 5-of-6 on the power play in Friday's 8-0 win at St. Lawrence, went 1-of-3 on the man-advantage against the Knights.
Freshman goaltender Steve Perry (Ligonier, PA) made 19 saves to help the Green and Gold earn the league point. The Knights, however, fell just short in their bid to gain a top-four finish when Cornell edge Harvard 2-1 in Ithaca to gain the fourth spot.
In an evenly played first period, Quinnipiac held a slight 9-8 advantage in shots, but Clarkson held the lead after the opening 20 minutes on a goal by sophomore Pat Megannety (Oakville, ONT) late in the stanza. Megannety tallied his third goal of the season and first in seven games with a quick shot from the bottom of the right circle 14:06. Junior Joe Zarbo (Grand Island, NY) earned the lone assist when he knocked a Bobcat defender off the puck and fed Megannety with a pass from behind the net.
Clarkson held the slim advantage in shots, 7-6, for the second period, but this time the Bobcats came away with the goal forcing a 1-1 tie through 40 minutes. With 1:40 remaining in the period and just 12 seconds left in a man-advantage opportunity, Quinnipiac's Connor Jones found a bouncing puck at the top of the crease and floated a shot past Perry for his 13th goal of the season.
Clarkson outshot the visitors 4-1 in the third period, but Quinnipiac held a 4-2 margin the five-minute overtime session.
The Knights were 0-of-3 on the power play.
Michael Garteig made 20 saves for Quinnipiac, which finished third in the league standings.