Numbers to Know:
Record: 11-6-3, 8-5-2 Ivy, 12th in pairwise
Goals For: 66 (3.30 per game)
Goals Against: 48 (2.62 per game)
Save Percentage: 0.92
Power Play: 23-for-67 (34.3 percent)
Penalty Kill: 17-for-68 (75.0 percent)
Last season, Harvard was dealt a heartbreaking overtime loss to No. 10 Clarkson in the ECAC Tournament semifinals— the loss ruined Harvard’s chance at its fourth potential NCAA bid in four years. Currently ranked No. 19, the Crimson were slotted at fifth in this year’s ECAC Preseason Poll but have outperformed that mark thus far as they’re tied with No. 10 Clarkson for third. Harvard is also 15th in the pairwise rankings, having recently beaten the then-No. 9 Golden Knights while also boasting victories over then-No. 6 Quinnipiac, No. 15 Cornell, and No. 18 Arizona State. The Crimson are playing some of their best hockey right now, they’ve won four of five and haven’t lost consecutive games since the first two games of the season.
Players to Watch:
1) Lewis Zerter-Gossage, F
The team’s senior captain Zerter-Gossage has shouldered more of the scoring load than years prior. After scoring 10 goals and piling up 19 assists the entirety of last season, he’s shifted to a more goal-oriented approach and already has 10 goals in 19 games. Zerter-Gossage has been a four-year contributor and is 18th in the country in goals per game.
2) Adam Fox, D
Fox has been one of the nation’s best players during the 2018-19 campaign, ranking third in points per game (1.42) and second in assists (1.05). A third-round NHL Draft pick, Fox facilitates Harvard’s offense to tremendous success—he’s got seven goals and 20 assists on the season. He’s the country’s most prolific scoring defenseman and has been doing it for years—Fox has cleared 27 points in each of his three seasons with the team.
3) Casey Dornbach, F
Out of all the freshmen in the country, Dornbach leads the class in points per game—and by a healthy margin. With 22 points in 19 games, Dornbach is the only first-year player to average more than a point per game, with the next six players behind him all NHL draftees. Like Fox, the Edina, Minn. product is a excellent passer—18 of his points have set up teammates.
All-Time Beanpot Record: 55-77, 11 Championships
The Crimson were involved in consecutive overtime games last Beanpot, dropping a double-overtime thriller to Boston University in the opening round before fighting off a resilient Boston College in the consolation game and winning in the extra period. Harvard was the better side for much of the opener against the Terriers, and Merrick Madsen had 39 saves, but ultimately BU’s Ty Amonte found the back of the net just under two minutes into the second period. Then, against the Eagles the next week, the Crimson built a 3-1 lead in the final period. BC’s Logan Hutsko had a third period hat trick to will his team back into it, but Seb Lloyd scored off of a Fox assist at the 2:43 mark of overtime to escape TD Garden with a win.
Harvard has a rematch with the Eagles in the first round of this year’s Beanpot, and seeing as BC has lost four straight over the past two years of the tournament, it’s likely to pose a stiff test. The Crimson have been better this year overall, and the match could be decided by the goaltenders. Harvard’s Michael Lackey is 17th in the country in save percentage, the Eagles’ Joseph Woll is 22nd. This game won’t likely feature as many combined goals as last year’s matchup (nine) but the chance for an overtime game is still there. The Crimson won the Beanpot in 2017 and have the depth to do it again this year. Should they beat BC, they’ll likely feel decently confident in the final against either a reeling Northeastern side—the Huskies were swept by Providence last weekend—or a BU team that matches up well.