Freshmen Lead RPI to Shutout of Harvard

Posted at: 02/01/2013 10:37 PM
By: WNYT Sports & RPI Athletics

TROY, N.Y. - The Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute men's hockey team saw freshmen score all three goals and another rookie post a shutout as the Engineers defeated Harvard University, 3-0, in an ECAC Hockey contest at Houston Field House. Mark Miller scored two of the goals RPI, which got 11 saves from Jason Kasdorf to improve to 9-11-5 overall and 4-6-3 in the league. The Crimson fall to 5-14-1 and 3-12-0.

RPI got on the board late in the first period when Miller (Massena, NY / Omaha Lancers) saw his shot from the top of the right faceoff circle deflect off a Harvard player and then off the right post and into the net. Sophomore defenseman Luke Curadi (Cheshire, CT / Dubuque Fighting

Saints) had the primary assist, while freshman Mike Zalewski (New Hartford, NY / Vernon Vipers) had the secondary helper. Rensselaer held a 12-3 advantage in shots despite having to kill off a 5-minute major penalty.

A highlight-reel power play goal by Zalewski early in the second period gave the Engineers a 2-0 lead. After collecting the puck on the end board, he drove to the front of the net and wrapped the puck past Harvard netminder Raphael Girard (Saint-Hyacinthe, PQ / Northwood) from one knee. Zalewski's goal, his fourth of the season, was set up by classmate Milos Bubela (Banska Bystrica, Slovakia / Dubuque Fighting Saints) and it came at the 5:03 mark.

Miller made it 3-0 for the Engineers just 2:55 into the third period when he drove the net and tapped in a pass feathered by senior defenseman Nick Bailen (Fredonia, NY / Indiana Ice). The goal was the fourth of the season for Miller.

Kasdorf made three saves in the first period, six in the second and two in the third for his first career shutout. It is the sixth time in

88 meetings against Harvard that RPI has posted a shutout and the first since Joel Laing did so on March 4, 2000 in Cambridge.

Raphael finished with 20 saves for the Crimson, including 11 in the first period.

Rensselaer is right back in action on Saturday night when it hosts No.

16 Dartmouth College in the 36th Annual Bank of America Big Red Freakout! Harvard plays next on Monday night against No. 5 Boston College in the Beanpot (8pm).