MIDDLETOWN, CT -- In their first conference match in over a month, the Williams Men's Hockey (8-2-1) team got off to an early start in the first period with two goals to ultimately defeat their Wesleyan opponents (2-9-0) 3-1. Senior Alex Debaere and sophomore Sam Gray scored in the first period, and freshman David Italiano scored in the third period. Senior goaltender Sean Dougherty made twenty-five saves.
The first period was dominated by the Ephs, scoring two unanswered goals. The first came at 2:47 into the game, when DeBaere got one past Cardinals goaltender Dawson Sprigings. This marked DeBaere's first goal on the season. DeBaere was assisted on the play by sophomore Tyler Young.
The second goal was scored on a power play opportunity, after Jaren Taenaka for Wesleyan went to the box for elbowing at 17:14. Sam Gray fired one past Sprigings and the Wesleyan special teams unit at 18:27 for the game-winning goal. Tyler Young and junior Greg Johnson earned assists on the play.
The shot count after the first period was in Williams' favor 14-5.
Wesleyan got on the board early in the second period, when Dylan Holze shot one past goaltender Sean Dougherty off of a pass from James Kline at 2:49. This was the sole goal for the Cardinals in this contest. The Williams squad went on the penalty kill twice in the period, managing to prevent a goal against on both occasions.
"In the second, we got away from the way we play, the way we had been playing," said head coach Bill Kangas. "We weren't as crisp, we weren't as sharp. Wesleyan played a good second and weren't able to match that."
After two periods, the shot count was 28-18 for the Ephs, with a second period total of 14-13.
Senior captain Brian McNamara took a penalty at 8:35 for cross-checking, however the Ephs again effectively killed this power play opportunity. Wesleyan pulled their goalie for the man advantage with 1:35 remaining, however they were unable to capitalize. The game finished with a final score of 3-1 for the Ephs.
"We got back to our style of play," remarked Kangas on the play in the third. "All in all, it was a good road win, and a good two points tonight. Looking ahead, we need to be more consistent in all three zones. We have to build on how we play, we're still trying to get better day after day. Our best hockey is ahead of us. "
This victory brings the team's overall record to 8-2-1 on the season, with a conference record of 5-1-1. With this defeat, the Wesleyan squad moves to 2-9-0 overall, and 1-4-0 in the conference. The Ephs will play Trinity Saturday at 3:00 pm.