CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Playing in front of a sizeable and boisterous crowd of Bentley University fans that made it sound more like a Falcon home game, the hockey team was nevertheless beaten by the Harvard Crimson 5-0 Saturday night in a non-conference matchup at the Bright Hockey Center.
The crowd of about 750 Bentley fans made their presence felt all night and were clearly the more vocal supporters, but it wasn't enough to will their team to a victory in the first ever matchup between the two programs.
Harvard freshman Jimmy Vesey scored twice, once in the second period and once in the third, to lead the Crimson attack, while Luke Greiner and Alex Fallstrom added first period goals. Junior netminder Raphael Girard made 31 saves for the shutout.
Falcons goalie Branden Komm (Williamsville, N.Y./Northfield Mount Hermon) faced an onslaught of shots from Harvard, 44 in all, and stopped 39 of them. But he was bettered by Girard, who stifled Bentley all night.
The Crimson, playing for the first time this season, led 2-0 after the first period on goals by Greiner and Fallstrom, a 2009 draft pick of the Boston Bruins.
Greiner's goal at 4:09 came off a break down the ice and a shot from the left face-off circle that beat Komm. Fallstrom's goal at 16:22 came off a break down the ice as well and his shot was taken from nearly the same spot as Greiner's.
Seconds after Fallstrom made it 2-0 for Harvard, Bentley appeared to have scored only to have it disallowed by a video review.
The Falcons came out strong in the second period and created several scoring chances, but weren't able to put one past Girard. Harvard then settled down in the second half of the period, and received a goal from Vesey just 24 seconds into a power play to make it 3-0 at 17:42. Vesey skated in on net and initially mishandled the puck, only to recover as he crossed the goal line and put a backhander in for the goal.
Bentley opened the third period still trailing 3-0, but on the power play, and a hooking penalty to defenseman Danny Biega 24 seconds in gave them a brief two-man advantage, but nothing came of it. Vesey scored his second of the night at 9:13 to essentially seal it for the Crimson.
The Falcons fall to 2-2 on the season after Friday's win over Alabama-Huntsville. They return to Atlantic Hockey play next weekend with a two-game series at Robert Morris, beginning Friday night at 7:05 pm.