(Photo Courtesy of Penn Athletics)
For the second straight time, the Penn Quakers are the Ivy League Champions. And just like last time, they had to go through the Yale Bulldogs to earn that title.
Playing on one day’s rest, both the Bulldogs and Quakers came out a little sluggish. The first half saw a combined eight failed clears as each side failed on four, as well as 21 combined turnovers (12 Penn, 11 Yale). But at the end of the day, it was Penn who was able to find its rhythm and take down Yale 15-9.
The Quakers, once again, leaned on the play of Patrick Burkinshaw (16 saves), Dylan Gergar (4G/2A), and Sam Handley (3G/2A).
Late in the second quarter, Gabe Furey and Luke DiGiacobbe each found the back of the net to give Penn the 6-4 lead heading into the half. Those two scores would quickly be stacked upon as the Quakers put up five more scores through the 4:45 mark of the third quarter, extending the run to seven goals and pulling ahead 11-4.
All but one of those first five goals in the third quarter involved either Dylan Gergar or Sam Handley. Gergar got the scoring started in the second quarter and then put home the final two of that seven-goal run, including a man-up score assisted by Handley, who had notched one himself less than a minute prior.
Thomas Bragg found Carson Kuhl for the score to put an end to bleeding for Yale and Matt Brandau put home a pair within the final two minutes of the quarter to cut the Penn lead to five. However, with 20 seconds left in the frame, there was still time for Penn to do more damage.
Nicholas Ramsey won the ensuing faceoff and Yale was able to get two, each of which were saved by Burkinshaw. Off the second shot, Burkinshaw threw the outlet pass to Ben Bedard, who handled the ball and moved it to Dylan Gergar. Right as the buzzer sounded, Gergar bumped the rock down to Ben Smith for a last second score.
Bedard and Handley put home two more early in the fourth and Handley scored the final goal of the contest with 1:48 left in regulation. Yale got off 10 shots in the final frame (four on cage), but only converted twice with Leo Johnson finding Matt Brandau for a man-up score. Minutes later, Brandau found Johnson on a man-up situation.