No. 5 Men’s Ice Hockey Suffers Disappointing Home Defeat Against Clarkson

Joe Bertolami

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Photo: Liz Flynn

Just 24 hours after a routing of St. Lawrence, the Quinnipiac men’s ice hockey team (23-7-2, 12-6-2 ECAC Hockey) was unable to bring that fire power to Saturday’s game, falling to Clarkson (21-10-1, 12-7-1 ECAC Hockey) by a score of 5-3.


All seemed to be going well after one period of play, as the teams went back and forth for most of the period before Alex Whelan tickled the twine with just under four minutes to play in the opening frame. However, this was the only time the Bobcats would possess the lead, as Clarkson came out firing the middle twenty.


“I thought Clarkson was really good tonight,” head coach Rand Pecknold said. “They dug down deep, made plays, and finished their chances. They are top 20 for a reason.”


The Golden Knights exploded for four goals in the second period, taking a 4-2 lead heading into the third. Quinnipiac’s lone bright spot in this period was Chase Priskie, who scored one of the prettiest goals of the season. Priskie dangled his way through multiple Clarkson players, finishing off the impressive individual effort, bringing the score to two apiece. Yet, the second half of this period was dominated by the Golden Knights, who applied heavy pressure on the forecheck, getting rewarded with hard-earned goals.


While Clarkson did earn their win tonight, that does not suggest Quinnipiac put forth their greatest effort in this one. The Bobcats struggled immensely for most of the night with puck management, not making crisp passes, which led to costly turnovers.


“Our changes were bad at times, our turnovers were atrocious and we just gotta be better,” Pecknold said. “You can’t give up five goals and win a hockey game.”


Clarkson carried this momentum into the third period, putting home another one to expand their lead even further. A 5-2 game with so little time left basically put the game out of reach, but once again, Chase Priskie displayed why he is a Hobey Baker award finalist. The captain did all he could to spark the bench, scoring his second of the night to bring the Bobcats within two.


With that goal, Priskie passed Ed Muzyka as the all-time leader in goals by a defenseman at Quinnipiac University. He has seen major progression since stepping on campus for the first time back in 2015, and this accomplishment is a culmination of that progression. However, it is not the most important thing on this high-achiever’s mind right now.  


“It’s a great accomplishment, but I would have rather had a win to move up in the standings,” Priskie said. “We will have to move on and get better.”


His goal to get the Bobcats within striking distance was unable to be built upon, as they would fail to get any closer. They certainly had more jump in the final minutes, almost burying another to make it 5-4 on a Craig Martin wrister that struck iron, and not twine.


While it was a lost night, this season is far from lost. The Bobcats still sit in second place in the ECAC Hockey standings, with a chance to secure the one-seed with a sweep of Brown and Yale next weekend.  These final tests will be played on the road on March 1st and 2nd, as Quinnipiac will look to put themselves in the best position possible, as playoff hockey is on the horizon.