Men’s hockey defeats Quinnipiac and Princeton in nail-biting finishes

The Big Green finished 2-2, 1-0 in overtime against Quinnipiac and scored the game winning goal against the Tigers with 56 seconds left to solidify their win 5-4.

by Ava Politis and Lauren Groulx | 11/6/23 1:05am

11-6-23-alesandragonzales-hockey
by Alesandra Gonzales / The Dartmouth

On Friday, Nov. 3, Dartmouth men’s hockey hosted nationally ranked No. 8 Quinnipiac University at Thompson Arena, tying 2-2 and then winning 1-0 in a shootout. The following day, the Big Green defeated the Tigers of Princeton University 5-4, with CJ Foley ’27 scoring the game-winning goal with less than a minute remaining.

Dartmouth finished last season with a 5-24-1 (4-17-1), earning last place in the ECAC standings. Quinnipiac was 22-2-0 in the ECAC and won the 2023 D1 NCAA men’s ice hockey national championship.

Head coach Reid Cashman is a Quinnipiac hockey alumnus and former assistant coach who helped coach the Bobcats to two Frozen Fours in 2013 and 2016. 

“I guess I have a lot of institutional knowledge on how they play, and how they want to play and what makes them successful,” Cashman said. 

It wasn’t Cashman’s inside man knowledge that contributed to the Big Green’s win, however. According to Eric Charpentier ’27, Dartmouth put everything they had into the game. 

“It was awesome,” Charpentier said. “We both came out playing. We outworked them every period. It was an unbelievable atmosphere — it felt unbelievable to win.”

The Big Green started from behind, with Quinnipiac scoring midway through the first period to take a 1-0 lead. Dartmouth quickly answered back when Oskari Vuorio ’27 passed the puck to Joey Musa ’24, who scored a diving tip-in goal. Vuorio and Charpentier recorded their first collegiate points along with assists on Musa’s first goal of the season. Charpentier also made a significant defensive impact, contributing four of the Big Green’s 17 blocked shots. 

“I was thinking we’ve just got to play simple, get pucks, move our feet [and] outwork them,” Charpentier said. 

In the second period, the Bobcats tapped in a rebound to go up 2-1. Luke Haymes ’26 scored his first goal of the season, tying the game off a rebound from a shot by Nikita Nikora ’27.

Both teams remained scoreless in the third period, but Dartmouth dominated offensive possession and created several net-front scrambles. 

The Big Green and the Bobcats remained tied after a five-minute overtime period, requiring a shootout in Dartmouth’s second straight home game.

Against Quinnipiac, Cooper Black ’26 stopped 37 shots in regulation, one in overtime and all three he faced in the shootout. 

Josh Waters ’24 and Musa were both unsuccessful in their shootout attempts. Finally, Nikora sealed the extra point for Dartmouth by beating Quinnipiac goaltender Vinny Duplessis.

The next day, the Big Green pulled out a back-to-back win, going 5-4 against the Tigers, which gave them their first win on the ECAC Men’s Ice Hockey Standings.

“I just thought we had guys that showed up today, and we fed off the crowd,” Cashman said. “It was an unbelievable atmosphere, and one of the reasons you come to Dartmouth is to play in games like tonight.”

Within the first three minutes of the game, Foley slapped the puck right past Princeton’s goaltender Ethan Pearson for the first goal of the game and his first collegiate goal. 

“Going to a game like that, [I was] just trying to win,” Foley said. “We’ve been working hard for that game, and we’re just happy with the results.”

Foley was then celebrated by The Big Green’s 3,000 fans, who they threw tennis balls onto the rink that resulted in a penalty for the Big Green for delay of game. 

“I was expecting it,” Foley said. “But it was a fun atmosphere tonight.”

However, the Tigers scored on a power play just 39 seconds later to tie the game 1-1. 

At 4:22, Haymes retaliated and scored his second goal of the season. After another penalty for the delay of game due to more tennis balls being thrown onto the rink, the Tigers scored again 18 seconds later to finish the first period with a 2-2 tie.

Two goals were scored on power plays in the first six minutes of the second period for the Big Green. Braiden Dorfman ’25 took the first as his first shot was blocked but then was able to sneak the puck past the Tigers’ defense for another Big Green goal. Nikora and Foley had the assists, marking Nikora’s third assist of the game for a new season high. Musa scored from the right faceoff circle to make it 4-2 Dartmouth. 

Down by two, the Tigers came out feisty in the third period, scoring at the 0:44 mark to cut the Big Green’s lead short.

Just as the Big Green was getting comfortable, Princeton scored again with less than two minutes left to tie the game. 

Unbothered, Foley skated into action. Cam MacDonald ’26 took a shot shot that rebounded for Foley to take the winning shot with 56 seconds left to go on the clock. Foley scored, giving Dartmouth the 5-4 win to avoid another shootout. 

“We weren't losing that game,” Foley said. “Things didn't go away in the third. I was lucky enough to tap it in, and a lot of chain of events were working into that.”

“[Foley] is an elite skater, thinks the game at a high level, and the transition from junior hockey to college has been seamless,” Cashman said. “We have three freshmen that are playing a lot of minutes, and [Foley] is one of them. He's doing a great job.”

The Big Green will be back on the rink on Friday, Nov. 10 at 7 p.m. to face off against Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.