NATE CHOUKAS ’18 SPORTS EDITOR
While most enjoyed a long break for the holidays, Trinity Men’s Ice Hockey resumed their season early, playing eight games, including six NESCAC contests. Over this span, the Bantams went 5-3, defeating Adrian College and NESCAC opponents: Williams, Middlebury, Tufts, and Connecticut College. Trinity dropped two games in Maine to Colby and Bowdoin, and were defeated in a scrimmage against the US Under-18 Team.
This past weekend, Trinity took to the road to face two of the top teams in the conference, Hamilton and Amherst. The Bantams came away with ties in both games, and sit in the middle of NESCAC pack at 6-4-2 in league games (10-5-3 overall), and are ranked No. 15 in the country.
Friday, Jan. 27, the Bantams faced the No. 8 ranked Hamilton Continentals resulting in a 2-2 tie. In what became a defensive battle, both teams’ goaltenders rose to the occasion, turning in excellent performances. Trinity’s Alex Morin ’18 made 37 saves and Hamilton’s Evan Buitenhuis made 43.
After a scoreless first period, Trinity’s Will Sleeper ’17 scored midway through the second to put the Bantams out in front. Soon after, the Continentals answered off a delayed penalty to tie the game. Early in the third period, Hamilton’s Rory Gagnon scored on a powerplay to take the lead, which the Continentals held for much of the period. With five minutes remaining, captain Ethan Holdaway forced a turnover in front of the Continentals’ net and buried it to even things up and send the game into overtime. Despite a few shots for both sides, Morin and Buitenhuis held their ground in overtime and the game ended in a tie.
On Sunday, Jan. 29, Trinity traveled to Amherst, MA to challenge the No. 12 ranked Purple and White in what would be another low scoring affair. Despite outshooting Amherst 43-27, the Bantams struggled to find the back of the net, as Amherst goaltender Connor Girard turned in an outstanding performance. The game resulted in a 1-1 tie.
Amherst’s goal came early, when Thomas Lindstrom scored less than five minutes into regulation. The Purple and White had several chances in the second period, but Trinity’s Morin shut them down. Trinity finally tied things up when captain Sean Orlando ’17 wristed one through Girard’s legs early in the third period, scoring his 11th goal of the season. Both teams had chances in the third period, and in overtime, Morin and Girard held the score at 1-1.
Next weekend, the Bantams are on the road again as they face off with Williams on Friday, Feb. 3, and Middlebury on Saturday, Feb.4.