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November Not Kind to GW Hockey

12/04/2015, 11:45am EST
By David Baratta

GW Looks to Rebound from First Season Losses in Second Semester

After posting an 8-0-1-0 record (W-L-T-OTL) through September and October, GW fell on hard times in the month of November going 1-2-0-1 for a current record of 9-2-1-1.  Although not a bad record at all (in fact one of the best first semesters in the past decade), the two losses came in league games leading the Capitol Division race to be a lot closer than it was on November 1.

On Saturday, November 7, GW faced cross-town rival Georgetown in their one and only league meeting of the season (they will meet again on F, 1/29 at Laurel for a non-league match-up).  The first goal of the game wouldn't go in until Georgetown scored at the mid-point of the first period, but GW would rebound back with a flurry of goals minutes apart from each other - two from grad student forward Kevin Zhang and another from senior forward Nick Ryan.  At the 14 minute mark of the second period, Georgetown would shorten the lead to one, and then they'd tie the game two minutes later on a rare shorthanded goal against a GW powerplay that had been hot going into November.  The third period would be a back-and-forth, tight-checking affair, but Georgetown would be the only ones to score to take the 4-3 lead and eventually the game.

The next night, in a very rare Sunday evening game, GW would head up past Baltimore to take on Johns Hopkins for the first time since 2007.  Senior forward Max Terhar and Zhang would alternate goals with Hopkins in the first for a 2-2 tie after one period.  Hopkins would roar back in the second period to take a 4-2 lead, but a last-minute goal by senior defenseman Matt Whiffen would cut the lead to one.  GW and Hopkins would again alternate goals back and forth in the third, with sophomore forward Connor Varley, Terhar, and senior forward Ricky Cyr scoring for GW to take a 5-6 lead.  However, a last minute Hopkins goal would send the game into overtime.  Thankfully, some OT heroics by junior forward Jake Lessick would seal the deal for GW.  Corey Nadell, starting in his first game of the season, got the win in net.

The next weekend, GW headed up to Pennsylvania.  On November 13, GW faced West Chester University for the first time ever.  Despite the long drive, GW got out on the scoreboard first on a goal by Nick Ryan, and then kept West Chester off the board to take a 1-0 lead into the second.  In the second, West Chester would find their own scoring touch and pot two goals, but a powerplay goal by Lessick in the closing minutes of the middle stanza would tie the game at 2 going into the third.  GW and West Chester would alternate goals in the third, with Lessick and Cyr scoring, but a last minute goal by West Chester would send the game to OT.  Unlike the game against Hopkins, there would be no OT heroics for GW in this one, and a shorthanded West Chester goal would give GW the overtime loss.

The next night, GW faced Saint Joe's for the second time this season.  GW won a high scoring affair against SJU back in late October, but that would not be the case this day.  Two SJU goals early in the first period would be met by a goal in the final minute of the first by Lessick, and that would be the only scoring in the game other than an empty-netter by SJU late in the third.  SJU would take the game 3-1.  Although he didn't get the win in net, Dylan Cleary gave GW every chance to win the game by making 41 stops on 43 shots.

GW will open up the second semester on Saturday, January 16th with a 4:50pm game at Kettler Capitals Iceplex against James Madison.  This game will be followed by the 3rd Annual GW Hockey Alumni Classic (sponsored by the GW Alumni Association and Taylor Gourmet)!  If you are a GW Hockey Alum and would like to play in the game, please visit gwicehockey.com/alumni for more information.

Photo credit: Matt Ricciardi

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