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Mike Schafer notches 500th win as Cornell beats Princeton

Junior forward Gabriel Seger and junior defenseman Tim Rego scored twice over a 30-second span in the second period to aid Cornell to a 3-1 victory over Princeton at Hobey Baker Memorial Rink on Friday night.

Along with Seger and Rego, defenseman Travis Mitchell added an empty-net goal to give Cornell its first victory of the season (1-2-0, 1-0-0 ECAC).

The win for Cornell marked the 500th head coaching victory for Mike Schafer ’86, the Jay R. Bloom ’77 Head Coach of Men’s Ice Hockey.

With the win, Schafer became the 18th Division I hockey coach to surpass the 500-win threshold. He is currently one of seven active collegiate head coaches with 500-plus wins and just the fourth Division I coach to reach the milestone. Mercyhurst’s Rick Gotkin, Quinnipiac’s Rand Pecknold, and Notre Dame’s Jeff Jackson are the other coaches with at least 500 career coaching victories.

Sophomore goaltender Ian Shane stopped 15 of Princeton’s 16 shots on goal for the Big Red. In total, Cornell posted a 65-44 ledger in shot attempts while out-shooting Princeton 37-16.

Pito Walton scored the lone goal for the host Tigers (0-2-0, 0-2-0 ECAC). Princeton goaltender Ethan Pearson stopped 34 of Cornell’s 36 shots on the night.

Following a scoreless period in which Cornell out-shot Princeton 17-6, Seger’s potted his first goal with the Big Red when he poked away at a loose puck in front of Princeton’s net to open the scoring.

Rego added a marker 30 seconds later as the puck finally crossed the goal line following a quick wrap-around attempt by the junior defenseman.

Princeton cut Cornell’s lead in half in the third with a power-play marker. Following a faceoff win, Walton attempted a wrist shot from the right point and the puck evaded traffic in front of Shane.

Mitchell tacked on an insurance marker with an empty-net goal with 22 seconds left in the contest.

Game Notes:

• Friday was the 159th meeting between Cornell and Princeton. The Big Red now has the advantage in the series 98-53-8 and is 18-3-0 over its last 21 games against its Ancient Eight rival.

• Cornell improved to 43-27-5 all-time at Hobey Baker Memorial Rink and has won its last seven at the venue. During the win streak, the Big Red have out-scored the Tigers by a 26-11 margin.

• Following Friday’s victory, Cornell is now 8-1-0 in the opening weekend of ECAC play over the last four-plus years. The lone setback came to Harvard last year on Nov. 5, 2021.

• Rego’s goal snapped his 28-game goalless streak, scoring for the first time since recording his first two collegiate goals against RPI on Nov. 13, 2021.

• Mitchell’s empty-net goal was his first marker in 18 games, marking the first time he scored since Jan. 21, 2022, also against Princeton.

• Andreev’s pair of assists matched his career high for the eighth time in his career. It was his first multi-assist game since logging a pair of helpers against Brown on Nov. 19, 2021.

• Cornell blocked 15 shots on the night, highlighted by Hank Kempf, Mitchell, Rego, Andreev, Matt Stienburg, and Ben Berard all blocking two shots apiece.

Looking Ahead:

Cornell heads to Hamden, Conn., to square off against No. 7 Quinnipiac at M&T Bank Arena on Saturday. The face-off between the Big Red and Bobcats is scheduled for 7 p.m. Game action will be broadcast on ESPN+.