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#10 Cornell Edges Yale in ECAC Hockey Opener

  • / Updated:
  • Kyle Evans 

Freshmen Luke Devlin and Ryan Walsh and senior forward Gabriel Seger chipped in one goal apiece as the No. 10-ranked Cornell men’s hockey team defeated Yale, 3-1, at Ingalls Rink on Friday night.

Junior goaltender Ian Shane made 19 saves in the winning effort for the Big Red, who improved its record to 3-0-0 on the season and won its first ECAC Hockey contest.

Seger and Robertson extended their season-opening point streaks to three games with their goal and assist, respectively.

Iisai Pesonen netted the lone marker for Yale, who also had a 20-save performance from Nathan Reid between the pipes for the Bulldogs (1-1-0, 1-1-0 ECAC).

Cornell killed all six of its penalties on the night to increase its streak of consecutive successful penalty kills to 10. One of the six infractions was a major penalty late in the opening frame. Despite the major penalty, Yale spent 80 seconds on the five-minute power play as the Bulldogs were assessed a pair of minor penalties.

Pesonen opened the scoring for Yale seven minutes into the contest as David Andreychuk capitalized on a takeaway from Cornell in its defensive zone. Pesonen’s shot deflected off the crossbar and into the net to put the Bulldogs ahead.

Devlin countered Pesonen’s goal with his own nearly eight minutes later, back-handing a shot past Reid to cap on a 2-on-1 scoring chance with his classmate Jake Kraft, who notched his first collegiate point on the helper.

Walsh gave Cornell its first lead of the night when he netted his second goal of the season, both of which have come while the Big Red have had a man advantage. Like last Saturday’s power-play goal from Seger against Minnesota Duluth, Robertson threaded a pass from the right faceoff circle to the far post, enabling Walsh to deposit the deflected pass past Reid.

Seger chipped in an insurance marker with an empty-net goal with 56 seconds left to solidify the Big Red’s victory.

GAME NOTES
• Cornell and Yale met for the 138th time on Friday night. The Big Red moved its record to 92-62-8 all-time over the Bulldogs after recording its seventh consecutive victory over its Ancient Eight rival.

• Cornell is off to its 30th 3-0-0 start to a season in program history. Under Mike Schafer ’86, Cornell has opened a season with three consecutive wins on 14 occasions (1996-97, 1997-98, 1998-99, 2001-02, 2002-03, 2004-05, 2006-07, 2009-10, 2012-13, 2013-14, 2015-16, 2017-18, 2019-20, and 2023-24).

• By going 6-of-6 on the penalty kill, it was the most power plays Cornell has faced without conceding a goal since last Nov. 5 at Quinnipiac.

• The Big Red has allowed just two goals over its first three games, Cornell’s fewest goals allowed in its first three games since the 2017-18 campaign when it also gave up two goals in its first trio of contests.

• Robertson’s three-game point streak is Cornell’s longest to open a season by a freshman since former blueliner Sam Malinski opened the 2019-20 season with a four-game point streak, logging eight points (two goals, six assists) during the span.

UP NEXT

Cornell will conclude its trip to southern New England when it travels to fellow Ivy League rival Brown. Puck drop between the Big Red and the Bears from Meehan Auditorium in Providence, R.I., is scheduled for 7 p.m. Game action will be broadcast on ESPN+ and WHCU (870 AM, 97.7 FM, whcuradio.com).