Rieser Dominant as Jeffs Shut Ephs out of NESCAC Quarters, 3-0|
February 24, 2001
AMHERST, Mass - The Amherst College men's ice hockey team scored two goals in a 72-second span late in the first period and never looked back, defeating arch-rival Williams College 3-0 in the quarterfinals of the NESCAC Tournament. The win was the Jeffs second in as many Saturdays against the Ephs, and advances Amherst to next Friday's NESCAC semifinal against Bowdoin College at top-seeded Middlebury College.
|Senior Nick Rieser|
stopped all 21 shots he
faced en route to the
Both teams came out of the gates with sloppy play, commiting numerous turnovers in the neutral zone and sending weak shots toward the nets. First-year forward Mike Kreger (Glenview, IL) finally broke the ice 14:49 into the period. Williams goaltender Benjamin Fash (St. Stephen, New Brunswick) deflected Kreger's first blast toward the stick of sophomore forward Justin Pitrack (Wilmette, IL), who fed Kreger as he streaked across the crease to beat Fash. 72 seconds later, the Lord Jeffs struck again, as junior Greg Carr (Hanover, MA) slipped a pass through the middle of the Eph defense to junior Darren Reaume (West Seneca, NY), who one-timed a backhand past a sliding Fash to make the score 2-0.
The second period featured much of the same back-and-forth action, with neither team able to take advantage of their opportunities. Williams' best chance of the period came at the five-minute mark during a power play, but Amherst netminder Nick Rieser (Northfield, IL) turned away three Eph attempts before Williams defenseman William Gilchrist (Henrietta, NY) was called for slashing, ending Williams' man advantage. However, Amherst would not be able to convert on its power play chances either, failing on both second period tries.
In the third period, Amherst had several opportunities to put the game out of reach, but Fash was unshakable in between the pipes for Williams. After Eph defenseman Daniel Houck (Boyertown, PA) was ejected for a game misconduct 3:24 into the stanza, the Jeffs had a five on four advantage for five minutes, but were unable to convert. Fash stopped four Amherst breakaways in the period, en route to 32 saves overall. Williams attemped to rally late in the period, but senior Chris Orszulak (Longmeadow, MA) beat Fash on Pitrack's second assist of the afternoon with 1:38 remaining to seal the victory. The Jeffs were able to shut down Williams' leading scorer Bobby Moss (North Reading, MA), who came into the contest ranked fourth in the country in goals scored, averaging one per game. Rieser was stellar as usual in net for the Jeffs with 21 saves, good for his third shutout this season.
Williams had been a thorn in Amherst's side as of late, winning their last six meetings prior to this year. The win was Amherst's second against Williams this season, with the first coming in Williamstown last Saturday, 3-2. Amherst (17-4-3) has now won its last five games in a row, and has only one loss in their last 14 contests. Meanwhile, Williams drops to 9-15-1 with the loss, and ends their season with only two wins in their last 12 games. The Jeffs move on to the semifinals of the NESCAC Tournament, and face Bowdoin College at Middlebury next Friday. The Polar Bears (14-9-1) advanced with a 4-3 overtime victory over Trinity College earlier in the afternoon. Amherst defeated Bowdoin in Amherst on February 9, 6-1.
Full game box score