By Katie Adams
The Dutchmen polished off one of their best seasons this past weekend with two wins, beating both Brown and the defending national champion, Yale. The team came out on top in New Haven this past Friday night, with a 2-0 win.
Their success continued on Saturday in Providence, wrapping up their regular season with a 3-0 win against Brown. While the Dutchmen have already secured their spot in the playoffs, Shayne Gostisbehere ’15 explained the importance of this past weekend.
“This weekend may not help us in the ECAC standings but it does for the big picture and the national tournament. We play the defending champs and, every time you get to play the defending champs, it’s special, and Brown is certainly no team to sleep on. Every game in the ECAC is hard.”
The Dutchmen went into this weekend with a seven-game winning streak, bringing it to eight on Friday night after their win against Yale. Goalie Colin Stevens ’15 had an exceptional game with a career-high 49 saves.
Sam Coatta ’15 scored the first goal of the game early on in the first period, while Daniel Carr ’14 secured the win 39 seconds into the third, giving him his 16th goal of the season.
All three goals of the game against Brown on Saturday were scored in the third period, coming from Kevin Sullivan ’14, Daniel Ciampini ’15 and Carr. Union went into this past weekend ranked third in the country and having earned the number one seed for the upcoming ECAC championship.
This has been a remarkable season overall for the Dutchmen; they just won the ECAC regular season championship over St. Lawrence, which will give them confidence for the playoffs. Union brought their season to a close with an overall record of 24-6-4, one of the best records in the team’s history.
Head coach Rick Bennett touched on the team’s plan for the next few weeks as they get ready to head into the playoffs: “As we prepare for our opponent, we will focus on taking care of academics and getting healthy. The first round bye is due to being consistent in the classroom and on the ice.
“We must continue on the same path in order to accomplish our goals. We are grateful for all the support we have been given by the student body, administration and local supporters.”
These next few weeks mark the end of the road for the seniors here at Union, having just finished their last college, regular-season game. This has certainly been a good season to end with. Sullivan explained, “Being a senior going into playoffs is a great feeling. Not only is it my last chance to win an ECAC title, but it is my last time to play at home in front of Union fans.”
Sullivan continued, “It is kind of a bittersweet feeling having this be my last season at Union.
Although it is coming to an end, I know our team still has a long way to go this season. My four years playing for Union hockey have been the best years of my life and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”
Union’s three-game ECAC quarterfinals series will begin on March 14. All games will be played at Messa Rink, as the Dutchmen earned the home ice advantage. Their upcoming opponent is yet to be determined.