Men's Ice Hockey at New England College
Saturday, February 11—4 p.m.
Lee Clement Arena—Henniker, N.H.
Babson and New England College will meet for the 64th time on Saturday afternoon in a series that dates back to 1977. The Beavers hold a 39-18-6 edge all-time and are unbeaten in 11 straight games against the Pilgrims (6-0-5) going back to 2011.
WHAT'S AT STAKE
Babson and New England College enter the regular season finale deadlocked for second place with 24 points in the NEHC standings. The Beavers would earn the second seed in in the upcoming conference tournament with a win or a tie on Saturday, while a Pilgrims victory would give them the No. 2 seed.
Senior Bill Seligman and juniors Rob Devaney and Charlie Ackerman all scored once as the Beavers defeated New England College, 3-0, on January 6 in Babson Park. Sophomore Matt Pompa stopped 32 shots, while junior Jake Donahue and sophomore Tommy Munichiello both recorded two assists apiece for Babson. Senior netminder Brett Kilar turned aside 35 shots for the Pilgrims.
LAST NEW ENGLAND COLLEGE WIN
The Pilgrims scored four second-period goals and Johan Qvarfordt tacked on a pair of third-period tallies en route to a season-opening 6-2 win over Babson on November 4, 2011, in Babson Park. Ben Kravitz '14 had a goal and an assist for the Beavers, who scored twice on the power play.
SCOUTING THE PILGRIMS
New England College (16-7-0, 12-5-0 NEHC) blanked UMass Boston, 3-0, for its fifth consecutive win on Friday night. Junior Bryce Nielsen and first-years Keenan Haase and Carlos Fornaris all scored for the Pilgrims, who saw Kilar record 42 saves to post his fourth shutout of the season. Sophomore Andreas Zollner (10-15-25) has netted five game-winning goals, Fornaris (7-18-25) leads the team in assists and Nielsen (9-14-23) has scored three times on the power play to go along with pair of game-winning tallies. Kilar has posted a 1.98 goals against, ranks fourth nationally in shutouts and is tied for sixth in Division III with a .942 save percentage.
SCOUTING THE BEAVERS
Babson (14-7-3, 11-4-2 NEHC) ran its unbeaten streak to eight games with a 1-0 victory at Saint Anselm on Friday night. Senior Michael Phillips scored at 12:20 of the first period and Pompa made 29 saves to earn his fifth career shutout for the Beavers, who have allowed just three goals over the last six games. Munichiello (8-12-20) and Ackerman (7-6-13) have both netted four power play and three game-winning goals this winter, Devaney (6-12-18) is tied for the team lead in assists and Phillips (6-12-18) has produced six points over the last eight games. Pompa and Botcher have combined to post a 1.81 goals against average to go along with a .939 save percentage for the nation's fourth-ranked scoring defense.
Phillips (3-3-6), Munichiello (2-4-6) and junior Matt McMorrow (2-3-5) have combined for 17 points during the Beavers' current seven-game unbeaten streak, while senior Dan Casey (2-2-4), sophomore Matt Brazel (1-3-4) and Seligman (1-3-4) have produced 12 points over the last five contests.
TOP FLIGHT GOALTENDING
Pompa, who has not allowed a goal in three straight starts and over 170 minutes ranks fourth in the country in save percentage (.946) and sixth in goals against average (1.64). Botcher has posted a 0.98 goals against average and a .971 save percentage while going 3-0-1 over the last four games, and ranks sixth in Division III in save percentage (.941) and eighth nationally with a 1.75 goals against average.
PENALTY KILL PROWESS
The Beavers took just two penalties against Saint Anselm and have not allowed a power play goal in any of their last six games. Overall, Babson has killed off 30 of its last 31 penalties going back to a December 3 loss at Norwich, and ranks is tied for fifth in Division III with a 88.9 percent success rate on the penalty kill.
STEPPING UP FOR THE STRETCH RUN
Since suffering a 5-1 loss to UMass Boston at Fenway Park on January 12, the Green and White has gone 6-0-2 with a 0.81 goals against average and four shutouts.
INSIDE THE NUMBERS
The Beavers are 7-1-0 this season when scoring the first goal of the game.
Game Preview: Men's Ice Hockey at New England College
Men's Ice Hockey at New England College