Men’s Hockey Suffers Two Losses Against Merrimack; Raiders Seek First Win this Weekend vs. Maine


Sophomore forward Adam Dauda recorded his first career two-goal game by capitalizing on two power-play opportunities.

Eric Fishbin

After another week of practice following a draw with Connecticut, the Raiders departed for North Andover, Massachusetts to play the Merrimack Warriors on October 21 and 22. With both sides seeking their first wins of the season, game one proved to be a heated contest.

Coach Don Vaughan turned to senior goalie Charlie Finn in net for the first game. The Raiders put pressure on the Warriors’ goaltender, going on the shorthand within the first five minutes of the game. Sophomore defender Willie Brooks was called for holding, and Merrimack junior defenseman Marc Biega scored the crucial first goal, giving Merrimack its first lead of the season.

Heading into the second period, the Raiders stumbled out of the gate. Despite being on the power play, they gave up a shorthanded goal to Merrimack senior forward Hampus Gustafsson, who beat Finn on a breakaway. Sparked by the 2-0 deficit, and remaining on the man advantage, it took only 18-seconds for junior forward Sebastian Weberg to get the Raiders on the board following the Warrior goal. Weberg’s one-timer was assisted by first-year forward Jared Cockrell and first-year defender Ross Craig.

A turnover in the neutral zone and a poor line change allowed Merrimack junior forward Jace Hennig to jam in a rebound before the second intermission, making the score 3-1.

Down by two and looking for a score, the Raiders cut the deficit in half with 18:39 to go.  Cockrell put in a rebound to score his first career goal in maroon and white.

The Warriors made it a two goal game once more with just under ten minutes to go in the third, but the Raiders answered yet again in a short amount of time. Sophomore forward Hunter Racine fired one past Merrimack sophomore goaltender Drew Vogler with 8:53 remaining, his first goal of the season. The Raiders would have two more power play chances, but could not tie up the game and force overtime. The final score in game one was 4-3 Merrimack.

Game two saw a goaltending change from the Raiders, with junior Bruce Racine making his regular season debut.

Coach Vaughan commented on Racine’s performance in goal.

“Bruce has been very good in practice. He deserved the start tonight,” Vaughan said.

The Raiders gave up an early goal, but sophomore forward Adam Dauda scored a late power play to even things up heading into the first intermission. It was his first of the season.

In the first period, the Raiders committed four penalties, and in the span of the two games, the team was called for 13.

The second period ended with Merrimack up 3-2, with Colgate’s goal coming from Dauda again. First-year defenseman John Snodgrass picked up two assists on the night as well. Merrimack’s ultimate game winner was scored by junior forward Brett Seney, a New Jersey Devils NHL draft pick. He stripped senior forward Andrew Black of the puck and beat Racine with a juke, putting it into a wide open net.

The third period saw heavy legs and drained energy from the Raiders, something Merrimack took advantage of twice, making it a 5-2 final.

Coach Vaughan noted the Raiders’ disadvantage on the ice when it comes to having a younger team with nine first-years.

“It’s a process and a steep learning curve for our young team. We are working every day to get better. We fought back hard all weekend until the third

period on Saturday. When a team is put in a position to play catch up like we had to do this weekend, it takes its toll both physically and mentally. It finally caught up with us in the third period Saturday,” Vaughan said.

Colgate did not hold a lead at any point in the previous two games, so it will rely on getting the first goal heavily when the Maine Black Bears come to town.

“The game plan would just [be] to keep things simple at this point and generate as many shots as possible. As we saw in the two game series this weekend, most of our shots turned into good opportunities to score. That all starts by keeping the puck out of our end as much as possible though,” Dauda said.

Despite not being able to capture its first win, the team knows what it needs to do moving forward.

The Raiders will face off against Maine twice this weekend, Friday and  Saturday at 7 p.m.