Amherst Caps Off Impressive Weekend with 4-0 Win Over Wesleyan

The Lord Jeffs are 2-0 after scoring four goals in each of their first two games.

by Jesse Corradi '08

AMHERST, MA- The Amherst College men’s hockey team was able to continue its winning ways with a convincing 4-0 conference win over Little Three rival Wesleyan University in front of the Lord Jeff faithful at Orr Rink.

To start the first frame, the Lord Jeffs and Cardinals struggled to create any offensive scoring chances. The defenses of both sides played tenaciously, holding both offenses to under five shots through the first half of the period. With just under eight minutes to play in the period the Amherst offense came alive when, on a 3-on-2 breakaway, senior forward Gregg Adamo (Manalapan, NJ) found the back of net, beating Wesleyan netminder Mike Paladino on his glove side with a hard wrist shot. Adamo’s goal was his second of the season, as he was assisted by first-year defensemen Gavin Carson (Montreal, Quebec) and senior forward Mike McIntosh (Soldotna, AK).

Wesleyan had several scoring chances throughout the period, but the Cardinals were denied on several occasions due to the stellar play of first-year goaltender Jonathan LaRose (Boyle, AB) and the Lord Jeff defensive unit. During the first frame, the Jeffs held the Cardinals to just seven shots on goal while Wesleyan surrendered 10.

To start the second period, Amherst went on the ice with a one-man advantage, but Wesleyan would add another player to the penalty box after just one minute of play to give the Jeffs a two-man advantage. The Jeffs capitalized on the ensuing face off when senior co-captain Kyle Schoppel (Cambridge, ON) poked in a loose puck for a power play goal that was assisted by McIntosh and junior Brendan Powers (Walpole, MA).

On a wonderfully executed 3-on-2, the Cardinals turned up the heat on LaRose, testing him with a wicked wrist shot that he skillfully deflected away. LaRose did a solid job protecting the 2-0 lead for the Jeffs as he stopped all eight Cardinal shots in the second frame.

Early in the third period, Amherst committed a tripping penalty, giving the Cardinals a chance to close the gap. Wesleyan came close to capitalizing on the one-man advantage, hitting the left post. Immediately following the Wesleyan power play, Schoppel came out of the penalty box only to find himself with a breakaway. The Cardinal defender had no choice but to take out Schoppel in order to stop a goal, and the Jeffs went on the power play. Amherst was able to increase the lead when first-year Matt Rhone (Dedham, MA) and junior Jeff Landers (Hanover, MA) assisted junior Joel Covelli (Carlisle, ON), who tacked on the power play goal to put the Jeffs up 3-0.

With less than seven minutes left to play in the period, the Cardinals pulled their goaltender to give themselves a one-man advantage, but the effort proved to fruitless as the Jeffs found the back of the empty net when Gavin Carson scooped up a loose puck at center ice and played it on goal to make the score 4-0.

The Lord Jeff offense seemed to find a good rhythm this afternoon as it tallied 38 shots on goal, with 20 shots coming in the second period. Coupled with a disciplined defensive effort, LaRose was able to earn a shutout in his first career start between the pipes, turning away 31 Cardinal shots.

The Lord Jeffs move to 2-0 on the season after picking up two wins in their opening weekend home-stand, while the Cardinals fall to 1-1. Up next for Amherst will be the John Dunham Invitational, where the Jeffs will face Conn. College on Saturday, Nov. 24 at 1 p.m. with the final round of the Invite coming the following day.