Men’s Hockey Fights for the Playoffs

 

CHRISTOPHER COLOSI

SPORTS EDITOR

The men’s hockey team has had a moderate amount of success to this point in the season. With a record of 9-7-5 this year, the Valiants sit in fifth place out of ten in the ECAC West Conference standings. With a conference record of 6-4-2, Manhattanville is looking to make a push into the playoffs. They have outscored their opponents by 19 goals this season (70- 51), registering 38 shots per game, and have won 57% of their face-offs.

The team has also killed 85% of its penalties, which is a stellar number. On Jan. 27, the Valiants took on Stevenson University in Reisterstown, Maryland. A hard-fought game that saw a total of 51 combined penalty minutes from the two teams, the Valiants came up a bit short. Despite goals scored by Matt Lippa, Cory Anderson and Oscar Arfelt, Manhattanville lost the game 4-3. With some time to reflect on the loss and hopefully an opportunity to bounce back strongly, the team was set to take on King’s College (Pennsylvania) the following weekend.

The game against Stevenson was a tough loss, but the school currently shares the first-place spot in the conference with Lebanon Valley College and Utica College with 18 points. King’s, on the other hand, was winless going into their game against the Valiants. They have been outscored by a whopping 111 goals to 36 this season, and this was a great opportunity for Manhattanville to grab a win.

After being down 1-0 early on, the Valiants flipped the switch rather quickly. They would go on to win the game 4-1, leaving King’s College winless still, through 21 games this season. Cory Anderson led the way, scoring two more goals for the Valiants, giving him three in their last two games. Matt Lippa also notched another goal for the second game in a row, and Ken McLean cashed in the other. When asked about being able to continue scoring the puck, Anderson said, “I would say just making sure I capitalize on my opportunities… I have to keep playing the way I always have: to create scoring chances for myself.”

The Valiants next game is Feb. 16 against Nazareth College, and hopefully the junior from Bakersfeld, California, can stay hot. With only one regular season game remaining after that, the team will hopefully make it to the playoffs.

“We’re sitting in a decent spot right now, though we would obviously like to be higher up in the standings. With a few games left, we have to take them one at a time and execute our game plan for each of them, bringing our best every night. It’s difficult to win conference games this time of year, but we trust our ability to get the job done,” said Anderson.

With a fierce, winning, mentality in mind, the Valiants should be able to pull through and land in the post season.