Men’s hockey loses fourth straight game

The Carleton Ravens men’s hockey team continued a four game losing streak this weekend as they lost games to both the York Lions and the Ryerson Rams.

During the York game, the Ravens were able to hold the lead for most of the game, before a late equalizer sent the game to overtime and then a shootout where the Lions won 3-2.

Carleton gained the early lead as Evan De Haan fired the puck past York goalie Alex Fotinos, putting the Ravens up 1-0.

Travis Douglas would net another goal for the Ravens, when his shot off the post brought the lead up to 2-0.

The Ravens imposed their will physically on the York Lions and used speed in the neutral zone to catch the Lions defence off guard. But, their momentum was cut when Ravens goaltender Francois Brassard gave the puck up when out of his net to play it, allowing the Lions to score and bring the score to 2-1.

The second period gave the Lions a much-needed second wind, allowing them to adjust to Carleton’s pressure and speed and creating a much closer game between the two teams.

At the midpoint, Ravens defensemen Derek Brown went down following a knee-on-knee hit from the Lions Stefano Pezzetta, who would be assessed a five-minute major for kneeing and a game misconduct. Brown did not return to the game.

The Ravens, who have relied a lot on their power play to create goals and opportunities, could not capitalize on the five-minute man advantage, allowing York to gain momentum with little plays keeping them in the game.

The Lions would  make the Ravens pay, with 38 seconds left in the game finding a way to put the puck past Brassard and send the game to overtime.

In overtime both goaltenders stood on their heads, making several highlight reel stops in order to force the game to a shootout, where the Lions would win and take the game.

For the third game in a row, the Ravens failed to capitalize on the power play, going 0-7.

Against Ryerson, Ravens head coach Shaun Van Allen decided to make a goaltending change, with Justin Nichols making his third start of the season.

Misfortune struck quickly for Carleton, with Ryerson striking first, while shorthanded. The Rams would add another goal 10 minutes later in order to go up 2-0.

Ravens forward Jared Steege would win the puck on the draw and find his way into the Rams’ zone, scoring just 12 seconds later in order to bring the score to 2-1.

The second period opened with another shorthanded goal, only this time for Carleton. Alexandre Boivin would jump on a rebound let out by Rams goaltender Taylor Dupuis and tie the game up at two.

The Rams would put one more past Nichols to finish the period 3-2, but the larger gap existed in the shots, with Ryerson doubling up on Carleton 22-11 in total shots.

The third period had the Ravens reeling, playing in their own zone for the majority of the period. The Rams would double their lead to 4-2 on an odd-man rush, a frequent play in this game for the Rams as the Carleton defence struggled to close the gaps at their blueline.

Chances however were still available, with the Ravens’ Matthew Sozanski thinking he brought the score up to 4-3 on the rush, but an early whistle from the referee signified the play was dead before the puck crossed the line.

De Haan scored at the eight minute mark for Carleton, on a fluke dump-in shot that fooled Dupuis and went in over his blocker.

Van Allen pulled Nichols to get the extra attacker out on the ice, but that decision would backfire as Ryerson would score an insurance goal in the final minute to bring the score to 5-3.

Following both games, Van Allen was very critical of his team, blaming the offence against York and the defence versus Ryerson.

“We have got to be hungrier around the net,” he said following the York game.

He criticized his team for looking for the “easy goals,” instead of getting into the crease and using their physicality to score.

“We were too soft defensively. We were constantly playing from behind because of that and it cost us,” Van Allen said.

The Ravens have another tough weekend coming up, as they face their crosstown rival the University of Ottawa Gee-Gees for the fourth time this year and the suddenly hot Royal Military College Paladins, who are on a four-game win streak.

Photo by Dan Robertson