By: Jay Ashdown
In one of the biggest games of the year for Canisius hockey, they faced the number three team in the conference, the Bentley Falcons, with a chance to make a statement as one of the top teams in the league as well as improve their conference record.
Unfortunately, the Griffs failed on just about every level.
“Very disappointed in our effort tonight,” explained head coach Trevor Large. “It’s a trend that needs to end. Way too many shots on net for the opponent, it seems like that’s something we’ve been working on lately to remedy, but we’re not getting it done.”
The Bentley Falcons defeated the Canisius Golden Griffins 7-4 at LECOM Harborcenter in a game the Griffs had no business being in to begin with.
“No turning point in this game,” said Large. “The score was irrelevant. We didn’t have anything going our way except for Barczewski for two periods giving us a chance, and I liked the effort of Lee Lapid tonight. I thought he tried hard, he was skating, but other than that? Nothing.”
The aforementioned Barczewski stopped 38 of 44 shots from Bentley before being pulled with about four minutes left in the game. While the numbers don’t jump off the page, Barczewski kept the Griffs in the game considering the scoring chances the Griffs allowed, and he gave the team a chance before things ultimately fell apart in the final five minutes of the game.
Drew Bavaro showcased why he is easily one of the best players in the conference, as he tallied two goals and two assists in the game to help lead Bentley to a well-deserved win that now puts the Falcons in sole possession of second place in the conference. As Canisius prepares for tomorrow’s rematch, they need to focus heavily on shutting down Bavaro if they’re going to exact revenge against the Falcons.
“Don’t let him shoot,” said Large. “It’s obvious. Time and space on a good player with a good shot? I’ll give credit to him scoring a goal on a one-on-two from the top of the circle, but I’m also going ‘where were we?’ We let him come right in, our gap was terrible, we were not committed, we thought we were safe, and Bavaro is a heck of a player. We have to be harder on him, but we also have to be harder on any player wearing black and blue.”
Max Kouznetsov and Lee Lapid each scored in the first period for the Griffs, and Austin Alger provided the other two goals in the loss.
Canisius falls to 11-10-3 (8-7-2 AHA) on the season, and they take on Bentley again tomorrow from LECOM Harborcenter at 7 p.m. As the Griffs take the ice tomorrow against the Falcons, there should only be one thing on their mind: getting even.