In spite of the cooling Maine temperatures, the men's hockey team is off to a hot start to its 2009-2010 season. After dropping two close games to Babson and UMass-Boston to begin the season, the team has reeled off four straight wins as it approaches this Friday's New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) opener at home against Bowdoin.
The team returned early from Thanksgiving vacation to meet the University of Southern Maine, and successfully held off the Huskies to win the closely contested game 3-2. The Mules were buoyed by a brace from Billy Crinnion '11, who tallied goals at 10:52 of the second period and the game-winner with just under a minute to play in the third period. Mike Doherty '12 picked up a pair of assists, earning both points on Crinnion's two goals. The Mules' other goal was put in by Will Hartigan '11 with about six and a half minutes to play in the second period, and at the time, gave the Mules the lead. Cody McKinney '11 was strong in the net, making 25 saves to earn the victory.
The Mules then traveled to Bowdoin for the Bowdoin/Colby Faceoff Classic, and earned a 5-1 victory against Salve Regina. The Mules had a balanced attack, getting goals from five different players en route to the victory. Crinnion continued his hot shooting and got things started just under five minutes into the game, followed by Nick Kondiles '13 finding the back of the net at 16:19 into the first period. In the second period, Colby again came out strong scoring a goal just under five minutes into the game with a goal scored by Co-captain Jeff Jarnot '10. Cory McGrath '13 and Dan Nelson '12 each scored a goal in the third period to round out their scoring. A 5-on-3-advantage goal from Salve prevented the team from collecting a shutout.
The next victim on the Mules' victory run was the visiting Castleton State team, whom Colby calmly dispatched in a 5-0 victory at Alfond Rink. The Mules used their prowess on the power play to secure the victory, successfully scoring all of their goals in man up situations. They received a pair of goals from Hartigan, as well as solo efforts from Kondiles, Nelson, and Co-captain Matt Strickland '10. McKinney made 27 saves in the net to earn his first shutout of the season.
Win number four came by way of a comeback against Skidmore, whom the Mules defeated 3-2 on Saturday. The Mules were aided by three goals scored by players who scored their first goals of the season. After falling behind 2-0 in less than eight minutes of play, Colby rallied to cut the deficit in half on Jared Crittenden's '10 first goal of the season. Co-captain Michael Belliveau '10 then leveled the score just over six minutes into the second period, and Doherty put the game-winning score in the net with just over two minutes left in regulation, earning the Mules the win. McKinney was outstanding in net for Colby, making 14 saves in the third period alone and 33 overall.