ALLENTOWN, Pa. — About 71/2 months ago, a ballot with the aid of the ECAC Hockey Media Association slotted Quinnipiac to finish eighth inside the conference. While the citizens significantly underrated the Bobcats, who could go directly to win the ECAC regular-season identify, the eighth-place prediction wasn’t entirely incorrect as the Bobcats have been the various remaining 8 groups standing inside the NCAA match.
Quinnipiac, coming off its first losing season since the 1995-96 campaign, became the final of the four ECAC teams playing in the NCAAs as Cornell became knocked out by way of Providence proper around the time the Bobcats were taking the ice to stand protecting national champion Minnesota Duluth within the Midwest Regional final.
The three-1 loss to UMD denied the Bobcats’ senior class a hazard to experience the Frozen Four for the second one time in their careers, but it didn’t do away with from the reclamation project led by the Quinnipiac seniors.
“That became some thing going into the playoffs that we wanted to leave quite of a legacy,” senior forward Scott Davidson stated. “Obviously, last 12 months turned into the first dropping document season in two decades of Quinnipiac, and it’s pleasant knowing that we carried out what we did this yr.”
Senior defensemen Chase Priskie, Luke Shiplo, and Brandon Fortunato as well as Davidson and fellow ahead Craig Martin performed key roles in junior Andrew Shortridge putting software single season data with 1.51 goals in opposition to average and a .940 store percentage.
They had been part of 97 victories such as a software-file 32 as newbies and 26 as seniors.
“It goes on and on and on, or even more than the statistical success that they’ve had they’re amazing young men off the ice,” Quinnipiac instruct Rand Pecknold said. “All of them have top notch grades and a group are getting their MBAs. It’s just an outstanding organization. They have completed plenty for us on and rancid the ice.”
Priskie, the crew captain, had no regrets in delaying his professional career to go back for his final season. His 17 goals, the fourth-maximum overall for a Division I men’s defenseman inside the last 20 seasons, only begins to inform the tale of his effect.
“I had a splendid 4 years, some thing I wouldn’t trade for the world,” Priskie said. “I’m without a doubt lucky to be able to play with some former teammates that have mentored me and then try to do my process this yr and mentor some of the more youthful guys. So, the factor for me is to depart a mark on this application.”
Pecknold additionally mentioned the impact of no longer having Fortunato, who saw his senior season reduce short due to a lower-frame injury.
“It hurt losing Fortunato,” Pecknold said. “I suppose that Brandon become pinnacle-five or pinnacle-six defensemen inside the kingdom. In the second 1/2 of the season, he changed into our quality player, and he became dominant. You can take a look at the information. We had been 25-1 with him and six-five-1 with out him. The electricity play went down, the whole lot went down and it was unfortunate. You can’t update an elite participant like that with everybody; it’s simply no longer viable.”
The right information is there will be masses of pieces for Quinnipiac to make a run at another ECAC identify and go back to the NCAA tournament. The learner’s magnificence scored 52 goals, greater than another Division I group. Wyatt Bongiovanni and Ethan de Jong teamed with sophomore Odeen Tufto to form the Bobcats’ top offensive line. If they live collectively, it may be the great line in the ECAC next season. Freshmen William Fallstrom and TJ Friedmann had been two of the greater important Bobcat forwards in the loss to Duluth. Defenseman Peter Liberatore made remarkable strides to grow to be one of the most dependable blue line options for Quinnipiac. Forwards Michael Lombardi, Desi Burgart, Daniel Winslow and Matthew Cassidy as well as defensemen Zach Metsa, Marcus Chorney and Cam Boudreau took benefit of the ice time they obtained in video games and in practices even as proficient forward Guus van Ness will be part of his elegance after redshirting this season.
“Yes, it is a young institution,” Pecknold said. “We have 13 freshmen and a bunch of sophomores. We will re-examine in some days once we see if we can lose a few underclassmen to the NHL. There is continually that risk due to the fact in case you are going to be desirable, you’ll lose guys to the NHL. I like where we’re at proper now. I just like the expertise that we’ve and the character. Our culture is remarkable, and this is why we win. I idea that [associate head coaches] Joe [Dumais] and Billy [Riga] did an incredible activity recruiting this class to get us back on track.”