Editor’s Note: This story was written by and republished with the permission of the Big Red Sports Network, which provides excellent Cornell sports coverage throughout the year for alumni, parents, students and fans everywhere.
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For the second straight night, Cornell and Colgate needed overtime after a back-and-forth regulation. However, this time there would be no game-winning goal, as the Big Red (9-9-3, 7-6-1 ECAC) and Raiders (14-9-3, 6-5-3 ECAC) skated to a 2-2 tie Saturday night at Lynah Rink. The tie was Cornell’s first in ECAC play this season, and moved them into a tie for fifth place in the league.
Unlike the previous night, Cornell was the team that dominated early. After a scoreless first where they held a 13-6 shot advantage, Christian Hilbrich gave the Big Red the lead shortly into the second period with two second left on a power play. The 6’7 forward deflected in a Joakim Ryan shot past Colgate goalie Charlie Finn just 25 seconds into the period, giving Cornell a 1-0. The Big Red appeared to score another power play goal a few minutes later, but after video review, the goal was negated when it was determined that a hand pass was committed right before Jake Wiedner’s shot went in. After controlling much of the play for the first two periods, it seemed Cornell would go into the second intermission with a 1-0 lead. But with just 24 seconds left in the second period, Daniel Gentzler scored off a faceoff, with Mitch Gillam seemingly losing sight of the puck, to tie the game 1-1.
However, the Raiders were unable immediately seize momentum. After a slew of penalties, which at one point included a brief period of 3-on-3 hockey, Cornell ended up on the power play again. John McCarron then deflected a Jacob MacDonald shot over the shoulder of Finn, giving the senior captain his first goal of the season, and the home team a 2-1 lead. But once again Colgate was undeterred. With 4:28 left in the game, Kyle Baun jammed home a rebound off a Jake Kulevich shot to tie the game. After the goal, the Raiders had most of the scoring chances in the game, and it looked like they might turn the tables on the Big Red and steal a win.
But Gillam would have none of it. The sophomore goaltender, who leads the nation in both goals allowed per game and save percentage, was stellar in the final minutes and overtime, first stopping a point-blank one-timer with two minutes left, and then holding off Colgate during a power play in overtime. He finished with 23 saves, 12 of which came in the third period and overtime, while Finn, who had 29 saves on 31 shots, didn’t even face a shot in the extra period. Even after their overtime power play failed, Colgate still had a few chances in the final minute, but two key saves by Gillam preserved the tie. The result marked the third consecutive year that the score of the Colgate-Cornell game at Lynah ended in a 2-2 tie.
Cornell will be back at Lynah again next weekend as they take on the nationally ranked Quinnipiac Bobcats and the last-pace Princeton Tigers.