Union Defeats RPI on the Road to Start Conference Play
What a great way to begin the meat of the season. I would not categorize this game as dominant, however, by the fourth goal in the second, I almost felt bad as super-fan Connor Owen was waving the flag in section 17. Almost.
The game started with Union running it's first line, which was centered by Kyle Bodie again this game. The first noteworthy point after K. Bodie was called 36 seconds in with an iffy tripping call was seeing Mat Bodie go off the ice for repairs, or so it seemed. I did not see what happened exactly but Ken Schott tweeted it was an upper body injury. In Union's post-game, coach Bennett confirmed M. Bodie is to be out of the line up for an extended period of time. The loss of Union's captain seemed to not rattle the bench much. After RPI's PP, in which they took two defensive zone face offs, was killed off, Daniel Ciampini scored his first of the year. The goal came off a shot from Greg Coburn, who was fed by Kyle Bodie. Champer deflected the goal and with that, Union was up 1-0 early.
The Dutchmen forwards did a great job of protecting Grosenick and the net after the whistle. As all games against the Engineers are, this game was rife with hits after the whistle--no haymakers, but certainly some jabs by each side. There were a couple of times Dutchmen defensemen either lost it behind or in front Gros, which lead to turnovers that could have easily resulted in goals for RPI. Luckily, we've got some guy who met someone named Hobey or something? I didn't really pay attention to all that "national awards" stuff. The Dutchmen had three pp opportunities in the first period alone but were unable to convert.
More after the jump
About two minutes into the second period, Guy Leboeuf, which translates to "The Beef, Guy" was called for hitting from behind. After three perviously fruitless pps, the Dutchmen were able to capitalize. K. Bodie, who was great in the face off circle, battled and fed one back to Gostisbehere and wristed one past RPI goaltender Scott Diebold. 2-0 Union. Josh Jooris was called for slashing within the minute of the goal. During this powerplay, an interesting bit of teamwork occurred when a RPI point shot was deflected by D. Carr and into Gros' glove. Totally on purpose. Prove me wrong. Four minutes after this unconverted penalty, six more penalties were called between the eighth and ninth minute. Most notably, RPI's CJ Lee received a ten minute misconduct and to quote Ken Schott, "Hell breaking loose. Coburn called for tripping, Lee spears Ghostisbehre in leg, Ghostisbehre dives like he was shot." Not long after this bit of anarchy, Jooris was called for his second of three penalties on the night. During the resulting 4-3 for RPI, senior defensemen Nick Bailen, who had some nice dangles earlier in the game, put a shot top shelf. Bailen's cele afterwards would have made people think this was either his first goal or a game winner. Neither of these observations would be close to true. Speaking of game winners, Wayne Simpson would net one of those seven minutes later. While in the defensive zone, Wanyo blocked a shot that got spit out through the neutral zone. He beat out two defensemen to the puck, creating a 1-0. He let the goalie make the first move, switched to his backhand, and put in his fourth of the year. Less than two minutes later, Mat Hatch hit home a rebound from Coburn, who was fed by Matt Wilkins after Diebold made an awkward save, which left him out of position. 4-1 Union.
RPI had sustained pressure for the majority of the third period, getting 13 shots on goal in the period while the Dutchmen only put 14 shots on goal during the whole game. This would have surprised me last night, however, how could I possibly have known the shots on goal in the Houston Field House? Jacob Laliberte made things interesting 6:39 into the third. Grosenick almost made two paddle saves in a row but conceded the second. 4-2 Union. While the Dutchmen only got three shots on goal in the third, the Dutchmen were able to hold the Engineer's onslaught of shots. Union and RPI exchanged timeouts late in the period, and with less than two minutes left, Diebold made his way to the bench. D. Carr took a holding penalty with about a minute left. The Dutchmen were able to withstand the storm and the final score stayed 4-2 Union.
Observations and Experiences
- Had to explain to the older man sitting behind me that there was in fact no shots on goal counter.
- Despite what I've gathered from my time blogging for an ECAC men's hockey team, not all people associated with RPI are terrible. Mike and the rest of the group sitting in front of us at the game happened to be great people and if all fans were like them, sporting events would be a whole lot less ignorant.
- RPI sure does have a lot of give aways! Union could learn from that and even one up them if we get a shirt cannon. I volunteer to be the cannoneer.
- Really creative chants there at RPI, "F*ck you, Union." That was 1 of 8 cheers I heard all night from the RPI crowd.
- If Union had as little imagination as RPI, we'd be the Union College Liberal Arts Students.
Game time tonight at Messa Rink will be 7pm.