Colgate Storms Back to Stun Dartmouth

HAMILTON – Senior Robbie Bourdon scored his third goal of the night with three seconds remaining in the game to lead the Colgate men's hockey team to a gutsy 5-4 win over 12th-ranked Dartmouth on Friday night.

Colgate (5-6-1, 1-3-1 ECAC) erased a 4-1 deficit in the third period with four goals in the final frame. Bourdon had two of the four to earn his first career hat trick, while Jeremy Price and Joe Wilson netted the other two. Kurtis Bartliff had a great night as well with three points, all coming as the assist variety. Wilson also added two assists for three points. Spencer Finney got the win after relieving Mihalik. He made three saves, while Mihalik recorded 22 saves.

“It was a gutsy effort by our guys tonight,” said head coach Don Vaughan. “When you’re down that much against a team like Dartmouth, a lot of team’s might mail it in, but I thought we really responded.”

Vaughan also gave credit to his senior leadership, not only on the ice, but also on the bench as the team did not give up after being down 4-1 in the third.

“I got to give credit to our two senior captains in the lineup tonight, both Jeremy Price and Thomas Larkin,” said Vaughan. “Price was great tonight and not only on the ice, but on the bench as well. He kept a lot of guys focused and both captains did an exceptional job stepping up tonight.”

Dartmouth (5-1-1, 4-1-0 ECAC) suffered its first defeat of the season and was the last remaining unbeaten team in the country coming into the game. The Big Green got goals from four different players and its leading scorer was Eric Robinson with a goal and an assist. Cab Morris came up with some big saves in the third period, but couldn’t stop the Raiders in the end. He made a total of 26 stops.

In the first period, Colgate had a pair of great chances with one hitting the post, while the second was stopped by Morris. Bourdon had an opportunity down the right side and rang it off the post to keep it scoreless. On the first power play of the night for the Raiders, Kyle Baun was on the doorstep in front of the crease, but Morris turned aside his shot that came with 10 seconds left on the man advantage late in the period.

Mihalik matched Morris with a great save on a 2-on-1 for the Big Green midway through the period. Brett Patterson received a pass across the goal mouth to the far post and tried to stuff it home, but Mihalik stretched out the pad to make the stop.

The Big Green opened up a 3-0 lead late in the second period with three goals in a three minute span. Dustin Walsh got the first goal of the game with 5:13 left in the frame with assists to Rick Pinkston and Andy Simpson. Then 27 seconds later, Brad Schierhorn gave the visitors a 2-0 lead with his second of the year from Jack Barre. The third goal of the period, which came on the power play, was given to Tyler Sikura for his fifth of the season with another assist from Robinson. Sikura won the face off back to Robinson and he took a shot that Mihalik stopped, but Sikura was there to stuff home the rebound on a second try.

Colgate cut the deficit down to 3-1 with a shorthanded goal from Bourdon for his first of the night. Bartliff intercepted the puck at center ice and found Bourdon down the right side. The senior winger fired a shot that beat Morris glove side.

Dartmouth increased its lead to 4-1 just 1:11 into the final period with Robinson scoring his team-leading eighth of the year. The goal came unassisted as he scooped up a loose puck in the neutral zone and beat Mihalik on a breakaway.

With 11:21 remaining in the third period, the flood gates opened for the Raiders with Price rifling a wrister from the left circle, past Morris and under the bar to cut the deficit down to 4-2. Tylor Spink was awarded an assist for a nice cross-ice pass to set up Price.  The momentum continued with Bourdon scoring his second of the night with 8:24 left. Wilson worked the puck out of the corner to Bartliff, who shifted the puck to Bourdon for the one-timer.

The Raiders got within one at the 2:13 mark of the final frame on a great effort by Wilson. Ryan Johnston slipped the puck down to Wilson in the corner and the sophomore worked the puck around to Bartliff. He got it back and wrapped it around and surprised Morris to tie the game at 4-4.

Then Bourdon picked a great time for his first career hat trick with a diving rebound shot with three seconds left to give Colgate the 5-4 win. Bartliff took a shot from the blueline on a rush up ice with seven seconds left. The shot got blocked, but Wilson handled it, put it on net and Morris pushed it aside. The rebound came free and Bourdon dove at the far post to score.

“We made an adjustment on one of the lines and it seemed to light a fire under Wilson,” said Vaughan. “When he is skating like it’s hard for team’s to contain him and he did a great job controlling the play in the offensive zone.”

The change to the lines was Wilson jumped onto the line with Bartliff and Mike Borkowski, while Bourdon was paired with John Lidgett and Darcy Murphy.

“Robbie is just a goal scorer, that’s what he does,” said Vaughan when talking about the performance of his senior winger. “and tonight that was huge for us and hopefully we carry this momentum into tomorrow night against a tough Harvard team.”

Colgate outshot the Big Green, 31-29, and went scoreless on two power play chances. Dartmouth tallied one of its four goals on the power play.

The Raiders will be back on the ice at Starr Rink tomorrow night at 7 p.m. against 17th-ranked Harvard.

NOTES: First hat trick for Colgate since Austin Smith on Feb. 11 of last season at Rensselaer … the game was duplicate of last season’s matchup at Starr Rink as Darmouth came back to win 5-4 and Colgate turned it around on the Big Green this season … Both teams had one family tie as Dartmouth’s Dustin Walsh and Colgate’s Darcy Murphy are cousins … for the first time this season, neither team scored in the first period … Colgate scored five goals for the fourth time and is 4-0-0 in those games.