Monthly Archives: October 2007

Bobcats continue to struggle, edge American Intl. 3-2

Bobcats continue to struggle, edge American Intl. 3-2
By Jamie Palatini
October 31, 2007

HAMDEN — For a team picked to finish second in the ECAC this year, Quinnipiac certainly didn’t play like it Tuesday night.

A game which many thought would be a blowout turned into a nail-biter as the Bobcats edged out American International College 3-2.

Last year Quinnipiac trounced AIC 8-1, and with 15 of 16 returning forwards from last year, this looked like another game where Quinnipiac would score at will. But the Bobcats struggled from the start, managing only six shots in the first period of what was a very sloppy game. Coach Rand Pecknold seemed frustrated by his team’s sub-par performance Tuesday night.

“I think we’re struggling in some areas…in terms of 5 on 5 hockey, we’re just not doing the little things well. We’re really struggling in the neutral zone defensively,” Pecknold said. “We have a lot of guys, especially our forwards, that aren’t committing to play defense.”

The Bobcats scored only one even strength goal in the game. David Marshall and Ben Nelson scored the other two goals on the power play, one of few bright spots for Pecknold’s club. Quinnipiac had been 1-18 on the power play in their first three games this year.

Quinnipiac needed a confidence booster heading into ECAC play after two bad losses at Air Force, but Pecknold said that it just isn’t there right now.

“I think from a confidence perspective, it’s pretty poor. We don’t seem to have that confidence that we had last year. I think we all understand that we’re not playing well,” Pecknold said.

Meanwhile, Pecknold was impressed with AIC’s play.

“American International played really well. I was impressed with their goaltender, and they looked very good,” Pecknold said. “I think we were fortunate to get a win.”

Goaltender Peter Vetri was one of the few positives for Quinnipiac. Vetri made 15 saves in the game, including some big saves down the stretch to preserve the win.

“I thought Peter was pretty good,” Pecknold said. “We didn’t have our best game, and he won the hockey game for us.”

Quinnipiac now faces a tough stretch of their schedule as they head into ECAC play. They travel to New York this weekend to face-off against Colgate and Cornell before coming home next weekend to play Clarkson, last year’s ECAC champs, and St. Lawrence. And if they continue to play this way, it could be another long weekend for Rand Pecknold’s club.

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Scoring Woes Still Plague Bobcats

Scoring Woes Still Plague Bobcats
By TJ Buzzeo

The women’s soccer team at Quinnipiac University came into their games last weekend without scoring a goal in their last three games; the great offense from the beginning of the season has been nowhere to be seen. Entering this weekend, Coach Clarke’s crew was hoping that a couple of home games would be what the doctor ordered. However, home just added to the illness. They played through a scoreless battle with Wagner, and were shutout 1-0 against Long Island.

A struggling Wagner team came to Quinnipiac on Friday the 26th of October looking to kick the Bobcats while they were down. Quinnipiac’s offense, led by Kate Lissfelt and Amber Sidoti, did almost everything it could to not allow this to happen as they out-shot the Seahawks 28-6 (8-1 shots on goal), and had a 9-0 corner kick advantage. However, Wagner netminder Sam Schueschner prevented the Bobcats from putting any of those shots in the back of the net. Bobcats goaltender Chloe Beizer did her part as she blanked Wagner for her seventh shutout of the season. Although the Bobcats did not score a goal or win the game, they did end their losing skid at two, and with their last home game of the season coming up, things were not looking too bad in the Bobcats world.

On Sunday the 28th, the Bobcats welcomed Long Island University to Hamden for the team’s final home game of the season. Before the game the Bobcats honored the seven seniors on the team who were playing in their final game at Bobcat Field. The scoring drought of the Bobcats continued as they played their fifth straight game without a goal. Unfortunately for the Bobcats, they would not be able to escape this game with a tie when Caitlin Meadows of the Blackbirds was able to beat Beizer to the right corner of the goal. The Blackbirds out-shot the Bobcats 11-5 (4-2 shots on goal), and the teams tied with three corner kicks apiece.

The tie and loss over the weekend dropped Quinnipiac’s record to 9-5-2 (2-3-2). The Bobcats are currently 7th in the NEC standings, which means if the 4 team NEC Tournament started tomorrow they would not make it. However, the tournament does not start tomorrow and the Bobcats still have a fighting shot to qualify. In order for the Bobcats to make it they need to win both of their games this weekend and receive a bunch of help to jump past at least three other teams. The Bobcats will play their final two games against Sacred Heart in Fairfield, CT on Friday, November 2nd and Farleigh Dickinson in Teaneck, New Jersey on Sunday, November 4th.

Quinnipiac falls to SLU 6-1

Quinnipiac falls to SLU 6-1
By Thomas Butto

The Quinnipiac Bobcats had a tough task on Friday, Saint Lawerence University, the #5 team in the country and it was evident from the beginning moments of the game that they were overmatched.

From the opening minutes of the game, Quinnipiac was the slower team and did not have the crisp passing and puck handling of the Saint Lawerence team. As a result the Bobcats were playing from behind right from the beginning when SLU scored only 2:30 minutes into the game. The Bobcats continued the trend of playing from behind and starting off slow and rusty on the ice. Throughout the 1st period they had to play in their zone and play defense because of the three penalties that they committed. The Bobcats have had problems in the past with committing penalties early in games that have forced them to play a lot of defense.

“We had to play on our heels the whole game… we played a lot of defense throughout the game” head coach Michael Barrett said.

The only bright spot in the whole game was Freshman goaltender Tia Wishart from Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The Bobcats were asking a lot from Wishart in this game because it was the first start of her collegiate career, but she stepped up and had a decent game. Even though she did give up six goals in the game, she was bombarded with Saint Lawerence’s offense throughout the game, stopping 37 of 43 shots.

“She (Tia Wishart) kept us in the 1st two periods of the game. The shots on goal were lopsided… she didn’t deserve to be put in that situation… the goal at the buzzer hurt us. I give her tremendous credit” Barrett said.

The goal at the buzzer that Coach Barrett was talking about was at the end of the second period when Saint Lawerence scored a goal with less than a second left in the game to make it 3-0. That goal really took the wind out of Quinnipiac’s sails because the Bobcats were only down 2-0 at that point and was hanging in there even though they were outshot 43 to 17 in the game.

The 3rd period was Quinnipiac’s best period as a team, with them scoring their only goal of the game by Kallie Flor. However, this period resulted in three goals for Saint Lawerence.

“We have an angry locker room. This team won’t accept a loss” said Coach Barrett after the game.

And that is the kind of attitude they will need if they want to carry on and win games this year.

“Groundhog Day”: Quinnipiac has just 5 shots through 2, fall 3-1 to Clarkson

“Groundhog Day”: Quinnipiac has just 5 shots through 2, fall 3-1 to Clarkson
By Sam Friedman
October 28, 2007

HAMDEN — The Quinnipiac Bobcats, trying to recuperate from a 6-2 drubbing Friday night against St. Lawrence, did nothing to alleviate their problems, losing 3-1 at home to Clarkson on Saturday.

Brandice Moniz scored the lone goal for Quinnipiac, who dropped both games of the home-stand and fell to 0-2-1 in conference play.

It came with 6:33 left in the 3rd period. A scramble in front of the net saw Elyse Cole flip the puck to Moniz, who shot it through the traffic past Clarkson goalie Lauren Dahm on her left side, which brought Quinnipiac to within a goal before Clarkson sealed the deal a few minutes later.

However, despite the score, for most of the game it seemed like the Bobcats were asleep. The Bobcats registered just 5 shots on goal through 2 period of play for the second straight night. In fact, Quinnipiac went 24:20 between the first and only shot on goal in the first period, and the second shot on goal midway through the second period. At one point, Clarkson had more goals than Quinnipiac had shots.

“We didn’t play the full 60,” coach Michael Barrett said. “This was like Groundhog Day. We’re living the same game over and over again.”

However, that was not even the worst part of the game.

Junior Nicolette Leone injured herself with 3:23 left in the 3rd when she dumped the puck in and apparently twisted her back. She remained on the ice for over 10 minutes, but fortunately was able to get up and skate off the ice on her own power after a stretcher was brought out onto the ice. Her status was not known at press time, but she did go to the hospital after the game.

Similar to Friday night, Coach Barret was none too pleased with his team’s effort.

“We sound like a broken record in the locker room,” he said. “I couldn’t pick which performance (Friday’s or Saturday’s) was better. We aren’t committed to winning.”

Even Moniz was not happy about the team’s effort.

“About half the people are trying out there, and the other half don’t seem to be focused,” she said. “We’re just not playing good hockey.”

The Bobcats next game is Friday, November 2nd at Harvard. They conclude their three game road trip Wednesday, November 7th at Boston University. Their next home game is Friday, November 16th vs. Colgate at 7 PM.

The Numbers Don’t Lie

The Numbers Don’t Lie
By Jamie Palatini

It has been said by many that a sportswriter should only use stats when he has nothing else to say.

It is a statement usually gleaned through much fact. But in the case of the Quinnipiac Men’s Soccer team, statistics are glaring examples of why this team is one of the best in the northeast.

First is the Bobcats’ outstanding record. Quinnipiac stands at 9-0-3 overall, 6-0 on the road, undefeated through 12 games. The only other undefeated team in NCAA Division I soccer? The No. 1 Wake Forest Demon Deacons. The Bobcats also boast a 3-0-2 conference record, good enough for third in the NEC.

You can’t win without scoring goals, and no one knows that better than star forward Graciano Brito. Brito leads the nation in goals per game (1.00), and second in the nation in points per game (2.25). Furthermore, he has been scoring goals at clutch moments for the Bobcats; four of Brito’s 12 goals are game winners.

Not to be outdone is Quinnipiac’s outstanding goalkeeper Freddy Hall. Hall is the NCAA Division I leader in saves per game (7.45) as well as save percentage (.921). Who knew the small nation of Bermuda produced such great goalies?

Quinnipiac was ranked 15th in the first RPI poll of 2007. RPI (Ratings Percentage Index) is used to determine at-large bids for the NCAA tournament. The Bobcats also have a quality win against Boston College, who is ranked 12th in the nation and 3rd in RPI.

Of course, these are all just numbers. But they tell the story of one of the most improved teams in all of college soccer. And if players like Brito and Hall continue their dominant play, the Bobcats will find themselves poised for not only their first NEC Championship, but their first NCAA Tournament birth as well.

NOTES: Quinnipiac’s 9-0-3 overall record has earned them the number one spot in the NSCAA/adidas North Atlantic Regional Rankings. The Bobcats moved to the top spot after two 1-1 ties this past weekend against Robert Morris and St. Francis (PA).

The Bobcats were also ranked 15th in the first NCAA RPI poll of 2007. RPI (Ratings Percentage Index) is one of many tools used by the NCAA in determining at-large bids for the NCAA tournament. Quinnipiac also received votes in this week’s NSCAA/adidas National Rankings.

New Blue Rugby Hit Bumpy Road, but Finishes Strong

New Blue Rugby Hit Bumpy Road, but Finishes Strong
October 24, 2007
New Haven

New Blue Rugby Football Club has made great strides within the past month of the season. New Blue went from being a virtually unknown team in NERFU Division III, to a top competitor in the Cup Playoffs. Although their rise to the top seems natural, the road to success was anything but.

Fresh off a victory against CCSU, New Blue continued their wining ways against Southern Connecticut State University. “The Battle for New Haven” plaque was at stake for the first time in both team’s history. The plaque has become part of the cross town rivalry as New Blue and SCSU were both founded through the New Haven Men’s Club. Sophomore Rory Smith, recently off the injured reserve list, lived up to the hype of great speed and athleticism. Taking over the game when the ball was in his hands, Smith had three 30-yard runs all resulting in points. Smith set up Junior Ryan Brady for a pick-and-go inside the 22-meter line to give New Blue the early 7-0 advantage. Then on the ensuing kickoff New Blue’s pack demonstrated great rucking abilities lead by Seniors Brian Frank and Kyle Dandrow which set up kicker John McHugh for his first of three converted field goals. With an early 12-0 lead, New Blue looked to put out SCSU early in the second half, but failed to convert deep inside enemy territory. SCSU got on the board converting a field goal of their own late in the second half, but that would not be enough. Senior Captain’s Jesse Ferraro and Dave Motisi set up Rory Smith for his break out run to finish SCSU for good, final 19-3.

After getting off to a great 2-0 start, New Blue would have a gut check as they lost their next two games to Trinity College and Wesleyan University, 33-12 and 20-16 respectively. Trinity College had all the breaks on the 95 degree October day according to Captain Gerald Loehr. “We played hard the first half, we played with them, it was a 9-7 ball-game at the end of the first half, and then we came out flat and couldn’t put anything together offensively.”

Wesleyan University would be a different story. Playing on a Thursday Night, this game had all the makings for a great battle; both teams were high in playoff contention and looking to prove their worth. New Blue would strike first as Loehr dove into the try zone early in the first half. But Wesleyan would go on the offensive on the ensuing kickoff, as 8-man Ben Nissum scored off a scrum deep inside New Blue territory. The first half was a back and forth game with little advantage by both offenses, until injuries halted the game. Two great players, flanker Anthony D’Eramo and Brian Frank would suffer injuries, a torn ACL and a broken Tibia respectively. With two top players out, reserves Sheldon Dobson and Greg Watcher stepped in without missing a beat. Watcher would score early in the second half to put New Blue up 16-3, while Dobson used his size to control “rucks” and “malls” But that would be the last time New Blue held the lead as Wesleyan would go onto score 17 points and win the game 20-16.

The Ruggers had their backs to the wall going into the last game of the season 2-2 and looking to make the Cup Playoffs. Needing help and having to win by more than 30 points to qualify for the Championship side of the Playoffs, New Blue responded by scoring double the amount needed; 68. Gerald Loehr, Ryan Brady, Rory Smith, Dave Motisi, Sean Meehan, Lincoln DeMoura, Andrew Gau, again Gerald Loehr and Lincoln DeMoura, followed by the kicking of John McHugh led to the overwhelming victory. Everything clicked on the Sunday game, Captain Jesse Ferraro added, “If this was going to be our last home game, I wanted to leave it all on the field, and we did.”

This weekend New Blue plays Plymouth State University in New Hampshire in the first round of the NERFU Playoffs. The #4/5 match up should be interesting this coming Saturday as the winner advances to the Division III Final Four. Coach Ben Boutaugh said, “Win or go home, it’s that simple.” and New Blue players agree, going home is not an option.

The Dream Season Continues

The Dream Season Continues
Bobcats Remain Undefeated With 2 Ties Over the Weekend
By Jamie Palatini

The Bobcats are still undefeated after 1-1 ties against both Robert Morris and St. Francis (PA) over this past weekend. Quinnipiac’s overall record is now 9-0-3 and 3-0-2 in the conference, putting them in 3rd in the NEC standings. Quinnipiac remains one of two undefeated teams in NCAA Division I soccer, alongside #1 nationally ranked Wake Forest.

Friday’s contest against Robert Morris, which was broadcasted on the Bobcats Sports Network presented by WQAQ, was played during what can only be described as a monsoon. Heavy rains fell all afternoon making for difficult playing conditions and lots of fouls. It was a downright sloppy game due to the rain, as shown by the seven yellow cards. Robert Morris got on the board first with a PK by Jacek Przednowek in the 26th minute. The score remained that way until Dwayne Mars scored his first collegiate goal in the 66th minute off of a missed header by Graciano Brito. Quinnipiac played a man down for the last 35 minutes of the game after defenseman Pierre Soubrier received his second yellow of the game. Freddy Hall loomed large in net for the Bobcats with twelve saves on the day. All things considered, the Bobcats were fortunate to walk away with a 1-1 draw.

Sunday’s game saw much favorable conditions with 80 degree temperatures and sunny skies. However, the results weren’t much different. Senior Danilo Schiavon put the Bobcats on the board with his 5th goal of the year in the 23rd minute off a pass from Fabricio Silva. Quinnipiac seemed poised to get the win until St. Francis (PA) senior Jarron Brooks snuck one past Freddy Hall in the 85th minute to tie the game at one. Neither team scored in overtime and the game ended in a 1-1 tie.

The Bobcats will head on the road where they are 6-0 this coming weekend with games at Mount St. Mary’s and the NEC leading Monmouth Hawks. If Quinnipiac takes care of business against Mount St. Mary’s, Sunday’s game at Monmouth could be very pivotal in determining the NEC crown.