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NCAA Update

Yale relishes upset win over Quinnipiac

Sunday, 04.14.2013 / 1:51 AM / NCAA Update

Bob Snow - Correspondent

PITTSBURGH – It was a meeting of ECAC rivals Saturday, but polar opposites in the national rankings entering the NCAA tournament.

So, how did No. 16 Yale University take down No. 1 Quinnipiac by a 4-0 score?

"Our goaltending is good. Their goaltending is good," Yale coach Keith Allain said two days ago.

Saturday, Yale's was better.

"[Jeff Malcolm] was the best player on the ice," Quinnipiac coach Rand Pecknold said about the Bulldogs' goaltender without hesitation. "I still think [goaltender] Eric [Hartzell] is the best player in the country and should have won the Hobey, and we are not here without him. But it's the best game I've ever seen [Malcolm] play."

"To get a shutout in the national championship in unbelievable," Yale coach Keith Allain -- a former goaltender at his alma mater -- said about his netminder's effort.

Quinnipiac defeated Yale three times previously this season.

"I think the details in our game and our individuals was better now than they were the last time we faced them," Allain said Friday.

Yale celebrates first national championship

Sunday, 04.14.2013 / 12:32 AM / NCAA Update

Bob Snow - Correspondent

PITTSBURGH -- It was a good night, indeed, for Yale University's Clinton Bourbonais, Jeff Malcolm and their teammates.

When the Consol Energy Center belted out a pre-game rendition of the Black Eyed Peas' "I Gotta Feeling," the fans in Bulldog blue got that feeling going in the stands with thundering support for their Yale underdogs, the 16th and final seed against the Quinnipiac Bobcats – the No. 1 seed in the tournament and the No. 1 team in the country.

Put a whole bunch of zeroes after any number 1-9, and you catch the drift of the number of times any hockey kid dreams of scoring the championship-winning goal.

Or slamming the door between the pipes.

Yale, held scoreless by Quinnipiac in their last two meetings, pumped home four goals to make it a very good night for the folks in New Haven, Conn., taking home the NCAA hardware in the 4-0 final.

Bourbonais, the junior from Dexter, Michigan, got Yale on the scoreboard just four ticks from the end of the second period with what proved to be the game-winning goal to get Yale off and running to the best night in program history.

Bourbonais also assisted on the insurance goal at 3:35 of the third period when freshman Charles Orzetti beat Hartzell on a tough angle from the corner that slipped by Hartzell's short side.

Yale beats top-seeded Quinnipiac for first NCAA title

Saturday, 04.13.2013 / 11:29 PM / NCAA Update

Chris Adamski - Correspondent

PITTSBURGH -- Yale University has produced five U.S. Presidents, 19 Supreme Court justices ... and now an NCAA hockey champion.

Jeff Malcolm made 36 saves for his third shutout of the season, Clinton Bourbonais and Andrew Miller each had a goal and an assist and Yale won its first national championship by beating local rival Quinnipiac 4-0 on Saturday night at Consol Energy Center.

"I came back to prove that you could go to the best university in the world and compete in hockey at the highest level," said Bulldogs coach Keith Allain, a former goalie at the school who has 13 years of experience as a National Hockey League assistant coach. "And this group has proven that this year."

Charles Orzetti and Pittsburgh native Jesse Root added third-period goals for the Bulldogs (22-12-3), who capped an improbable run to what was the first NCAA championship in 24 years for the traditionally lightly-regarded Eastern College Athletic Conference. Fellow Ivy League school Harvard was the most recent ECAC winner -- in 1989.

St. Cloud State's LeBlanc wins Hobey Baker Award

Friday, 04.12.2013 / 6:47 PM / NCAA Update

Bob Snow - Correspondent

PITTSBURGH -- Drew LeBlanc, a senior forward from St. Cloud State, was named Friday as the 33rd winner of the Hobey Baker Award, given to the top college hockey player in the United States.

LeBlanc is the first Hobey Baker winner from St. Cloud State and the 16th from the Western College Hockey Association. He finished ahead of the other two Hobey Hat Trick finalists -- Johnny Gaudreau, a sophomore forward from Boston College, and Eric Hartzell, a senior goaltender from Quinnipiac University.

LeBlanc was named winner of the Hobey Baker in a ceremony at the Consol Energy Center less than 24 hours after Hartzell and the Bobcats beat St. Cloud State 4-1 in the NCAA Frozen Four.

The trophy is presented in honor of Baker, a star player at Princeton who was killed in a flight-training accident at age 26, while serving in World War I. The criteria for the award include displaying outstanding skills in all phases of the game, strength of character on and off the ice, sportsmanship and scholastic achievements.

Yale, Quinnipiac provide ECAC defining moments

Friday, 04.12.2013 / 12:00 PM / NCAA Update

Bob Snow - Correspondent

PITTSBURGH -- If you are a college-hockey fan -- especially of the Eastern Collegiate Athletic Conference -- and pick lottery numbers, you might include 1-10-23-24-35 among upcoming selections.

It's been one year removed since Union went to the Frozen Four, but 10 since a previous ECAC team reached the Frozen Four (Cornell, 2003); it's been 23 since a team from the league, established in 1961, played for the national championship (Colgate, 1990); it's been 24 years since the last ECAC team won an NCAA title (Harvard, 1989); and it's been 35 years since two ECAC teams met in the final game of the season (Boston College vs. BostonUniversity, 1984, prior to both joining Hockey East).

With just six national championships in ECAC history, a seventh is assured with the Yale Bulldogs meeting their league rival Quinnipiac Bobcats on Saturday in the 2013 NCAA championship game.

Yale, Quinnipiac to meet for NCAA championship

Thursday, 04.11.2013 / 11:38 PM / NCAA Update
The NCAA championship game will decide a national title -- and local bragging rights.

Yale and Quinnipiac, a pair of Connecticut schools separated by about 15 miles, will face off for the national championship Saturday night after winning semifinal games Thursday at the Frozen Four at Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh

Yale, the 16th and final team in the field, advanced by beating UMass-Lowell 3-2 on Andrew Miller's goal 6:59 into overtime. Quinnipiac, the top seed in the tournament, scored three times before the game was 12 minutes old and beat St. Cloud State 4-1.

The ECAC rivals will be meeting for the fourth time this season -- the Bobcats (30-7-5) won each of the first three, outscoring the Bulldogs 13-3.

In the opener, Yale (21-12-3) blew a 2-0 lead in the second period when UMass-Lowell (28-11-3) scored twice in a span of 14 seconds. But the Bulldogs outshot the River Hawks 16-3 in the third period and had all seven shots on goal in OT to finish with a 47-18 advantage.

Frozen Four boasts solid crop of undrafted FAs

Thursday, 04.11.2013 / 12:13 PM / NCAA Update

Chris Adamski - Correspondent

PITTSBURGH -- Two summers ago, Antoine Laganiere had an internship with a bank.

Sometime soon, he almost certainly will have an internship of sorts with a National Hockey League team.

A 6-foot-4, 215-pound forward from Yale, Laganiere will have a pretty secure safety net should the whole professional hockey thing not work out -- an Ivy League economics degree. But as his role, production and body have all grown over the past three years, so have his National Hockey League prospects.

Laganiere's Bulldogs (20-12-3) advanced to the Frozen Four for the first time since 1952 and will play UMass Lowell (28-10-2) in the first of two national semifinals at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday at Consol Energy Center. Quinnipiac (29-7-5) and St. Cloud State (25-15-1) follow at 8 p.m.

Hanowski, Agostino get chance to play in Pittsburgh

Thursday, 04.11.2013 / 10:01 AM / NCAA Update

Chris Adamski - Correspondent

PITTSBURGH -- Other than a passing introduction at a Pittsburgh Penguins development camp three summers back, Ben Hanowski and Kenny Agostino don't know each other.

The two, though, are forever linked.

Drafted a year apart by Pittsburgh in 2009 and '10, about all else Hanowski and Agostino had in common through March 27 was they remained property of the Penguins. The two forwards played for college teams in different conferences 1,300 miles apart; their paths never crossed during their collegiate careers.

"From what I've heard," Agostino said of Hanowski on Wednesday, "he's a great hockey player, and I'm sure he's a great kid. But I don't really know him."

NHL players look back at defining NCAA moments

Friday, 04.05.2013 / 11:58 AM / NCAA Update

Bob Snow - Correspondent

They start each fall at 59 -- NCAA Division I teams, that is.

Sixteen go on to postseason play.

The winner of each of the four regionals advances to the Frozen Four. This year it will be Massachusetts-Lowell, Quinnipiac, St. Cloud State and Yale participating at Pittsburgh's Consol Energy Center on April 11 and 13.

For the majority of all college players, each season ends like those of current Florida Panthers forward George Parros. He left Princeton in 2003 never having made the NCAA Tournament in four years.

First-time champion assured at 2013 Frozen Four

Friday, 04.05.2013 / 9:00 AM / NCAA Update

Bob Snow - Correspondent

The only sure thing at this year's Frozen Four, set for the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh on April 11 and 13, is that the winner will be a first-time champion.

None of the four participants -- Quinnipiac, Massachusetts-Lowell, St. Cloud State, and Yale -- has ever won it all. Quinnipiac and UMass-Lowell were No. 1 seeds in their respective regionals; St. Cloud and Yale No. 4 seeds in theirs. Only Yale has been to the Frozen Four -- and that was way back in 1952.

Not since 1988 has a team (Lake Superior State) won it all in its first Frozen Four; three teams have the opportunity to rewrite that record in Pittsburgh.

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