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Cornell Athletics | November 20, 2015

NCAA Hockey: Cornell and Yale Skate to Scoreless Tie

NEW HAVEN, Conn. — Mitch Gillam made 30 saves for his third career shutout, and the 18th-ranked Cornell men’s hockey team slugged out a scoreless tie with No. 10/11 Yale on Friday night at Ingalls Rink.

The teams traded handfuls of scoring chances in both directions, both squarely hitting the post once and coming up empty on two power plays. The overtime finished with plenty of drama, starting with Yale’s Carson Cooper’s shot squarely off the post with little less than two minutes remaining to set up a frentic finish.

The Bulldogs then earned a power play for the last 54.1 seconds, and Ryan Hitchcock walked in from the right corner on a jam attempt with 31 seconds left only to have Gillam made the save. Then with 13 seconds remaing — with shades of Brian Ferlin’s breakaway overtime winner at Yale two seasons ago — Jake Weidner had a similar attempt only to have Bulldogs goalie Alex Lyon make a save with his blocker and give each team a well-deserved point in the ECAC Hockey standings.

For Gillam, the reigning ECAC Hockey Goaltender of the Week, it was a rare second career shutout in which he didn’t win the game. His first career shutout was Dec. 28, 2014 in a scoreless draw against Lake Superior State.

Weidner’s line with Christian Hilbrich and Matt Buckles on the wings had strong shifts on the cycle early, but the game’s first quality scoring chance came at the 5:12 mark. Alex Rauter was sprung on a breakaway by a pass from Trent Shore, but a back-checking defenseman had enough influence to make Alex Lyon’s save relatively easy. The Bulldogs countered with a two-on-one, but Gillam got his blocker to a shot from Charles Orzetti.

A wild start to the second period saw seemingly just as many quality scoring chances as the entire opening 20 minutes. Jeff Kubiak blocked a shot just 26 seconds into the frame and sped up ice before pinging a shot off the post. Yale answered with a Hitchcock wraparound that Gillam stuffed with his left pad, then Joe’s Snively slapper from the high slot was kicked away at the 1:13 mark.

At the other end, thunderous hits by Holden Anderson and Eric Freschi on the forecheck set up Anderson’s wraparound attempt, but Lyon flashed his right pad in time to make the save at 3:42. Play settled down after that — including an uneventful power play for each side. Yale mustered another two-on-one, but Gillam made a save on Hitchcock’s shot from the right circle and got across to his right to make a save on Adam Larkin’s offering on the bouncing rebound.

In the third period, Hayden was stopped from the bottom of the right circle on a two-on-two with 6:02 left. Cornell buzzed late in the frame, setting up Jared Fiegl’s clean faceoff win for an Freschi shot with 1:52 remaining — but Lyon tracked it into his glove.

Cornell (5-1-1, 3-1-1 ECAC Hockey, 1-0-1 Ivy League) treks east tonight before wrapping up its Ivy road trip at 7 p.m. Saturday at Brown.

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