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RPI Drops Third Straight

Dartmouth Likes Troy, Goes 3-0-1 There Since 2002

By Matt Graves

Albany Times Union, January 7, 2006

TROY - It was a heck of a hockey game for two periods, but Dartmouth ultimately found a way to continue its recent mastery over RPI at Houston Field House on Friday night.

Scoring three times in the final period and getting superb goaltending from sophomore Mike Devine, Dartmouth extended RPI's losing streak to three in a row in a 4-1 ECAC Hockey League game here in front of 2,762 fans. The victory gave the Big Green a 3-0-1 record against RPI on the Engineers' home ice since 2002.

"I thought RPI played a great game," said Dartmouth coach Bob Gaudet. "Our goalie played super. Throughout the game they had some really good chances, but we just kept on working. We scored a big goal in the third period to go ahead, and then we really worked hard."

Sophomore David Jones, one of five Dartmouth players who are NHL draftees, scored the eventual winner after RPI had dominated play following a first-minute lapse that led to J.T. Wyman's goal only 19 seconds into the game. Jones went top shelf at 7:51 outside the left post after a gorgeous cross-ice pass from Mike Ouelette to beat Mathias Lange for a 2-1 lead. Dan Shribman scored on a rebound at 10:41, and defenseman Ben Lovejoy roofed another from close range at 14:51.

"He (Devine) played an outstanding game for them," said RPI coach Dan Fridgen. "That was the difference. We probably could have been up two (goals) after the second period. Give the guy credit."

Dartmouth scored first after RPI defenseman Jake Luthi went to the penalty box for tripping just 10 seconds after the opening face-off. Wyman deflected Sean Offers' drive for the power-play goal.

The Engineers came back to tie the score at 9:15 on a 5-on-3 power play when Andrew Lord finished a perfectly executed 2-on-1 break when Kevin Croxton fed Oren Eizenman coming down the right wing. Eizenman sent the puck through the slot to Lord, who beat a defenseless Devine outside the left post. It stayed at 1-1 until the third period.

"They played a really good road game," said Croxton. "It's frustrating, but there's not much you can do. We were getting our chances. They buried their chances and we didn't; that's the difference right there. Their goalie played well."

Devine was flawless for Dartmouth (7-8-0, 6-5-0 ECACHL) in even-man situations, stopping 33 of 34 shots he faced. RPI (8-9-3, 2-2-3) has scored only three goals in its past three league games.

Note: RPI D Alexander Valentin sat out his first game since the opener after injuring a knee last week in the consolation game of the Ohio Hockey Classic against Holy Cross.