Monday, December 21, 2020

Thoughts and Observations of Quinnipiac’s lost weekend against Bowling Green

Keith Petruzzelli saved 67 of 72 shots this weekend against Bowling Green

The Quinnipiac Bobcats this past weekend welcomed the Bowling Green Falcons to Hamden for the first match-up ever between these programs. Bowling Green came into the weekend as a team that had already played seven games on the season even those two were against Division III Adrian. The Falcons swept the weekend series against the Bobcats winning 4-1 Friday night and followed that up with a come from behind 4-2 win Saturday. Here are my thoughts and observations from the weekend games.

- Quinnipiac was thoroughly dominated on Friday night and really didn't looked prepared coming into the game. Bowling Green dominated the first two periods out shooting Quinnipiac 28-7 while pounding the Bobcats on the fore-check and possessing the puck better. The Bobcats had very little jump in their step and looked like they didn't know what to expect from this veteran Bowling Green squad. 

- Color me super impressed with Bowling Green. This is a well coached veteran team that came into Hamden and swept Quinnipiac on the weekend. That is usually very hard to do and they did it in convincing fashion one night and in come from behind fashion the next night. They are strong on the puck and have a very good fore-check. The Falcons should be a strong team this season in the WCHA and reach the NCAA tournament again.

- I hate to blame officials but that phantom elbowing call on Quinnipiac's Peter Diliberatore was inexcusable and for Chip McDonald and his crew to make a call like that in a tie game late is just awful. McDonald has been a brutal official for years and this isn't the first time he has screwed Bobcats on calls. This call changed the game as Bowling Green scored to take the lead and followed it up with an empty net goal to seal the win. I do wish a call like that could be challenged in the future. 

- Even with the brutal penalty call on Peter Diliberatore, Quinnipiac just didn't play well in the third period to win the game. They need to play for 60 minutes and they just didn't do that. It really started with that late Bowling Green power play goal in the second period by Gavin Gould. That changed the momentum towards the Falcons which they carried into the third period. 

- I thought Keith Petruzzelli played really well this weekend despite the end results. He made 67 saves on the weekend and surrendered just five goals. His play definitely kept the score lower than it probably could have been. So far this season he has been a rock in between the pipes for the Bobcats.

- Quinnipiac was very undisciplined this weekend as they took 14 penalties. This is uncharacteristic of a Rand Pecknold coached team but the play of Bowling Green had a ton to do with that as they had a strong possession game along with a strong fore-check that created some odd man chances in which Quinnipiac had to take a penalty. The Bobcats need to clean up the undisciplined play fast as they have four more games this week.

- Not getting at least a split this weekend against Bowling Green could come back to hurt the Bobcats later in the season with the pairwise rankings. Outside of the playing Bowling Green, Quinnipiac doesn't play another team that is ranked in the non-conference schedule. The Bobcats will probably have to have real good league success and individual success against Clarkson to make up for their lack of non-conference opponents and the fact that most of the ECAC opted out of the season.

- Its another quick turnaround for Quinnipiac with a mid week home and home series with Holy Cross. The Crusaders are off to a solid 4-2 start this season but have played mostly Atlantic Hockey teams outside of newcomer Long Island University. These are super important games as Quinnipiac cannot afford to lose any more out of conference games with the lack of quality ECAC opponents on the schedule outside of Clarkson. 

You can follow the BobcatsHockeyBlog on Twitter @QHockeyBlog.


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