Series Record: 69-43-5
Friday, March 1
Saturday, January 26
Anthony Borelli backstopped Brown to a 3-0 win at Lynah on Saturday, January 16 as Brown celebrated their first shutout of Cornell since 1991 at Meehan and their second-ever shutout at Lynah, the first being their first trip to Lynah in 1959. For a bit of perspective, when Brown played at Cornell in 1959, it was prior to the existence of the ECAC. Borelli had a stellar game, stopping 23 Cornell shots as his skaters had 30 shots on goal and converted on one of the seven power-play opportunities they were given. Cornell was extremely penalized, including for discipline issues such as a too many men on the ice minor. The final score was 3-0 Brown, in spite of Cornell's attempt to put as many shots as possible on Borelli.
Brown has had an interesting season. They shut out Cornell on the road for the first time in recent memory, and they also tied both games against Quinnipiac this season, in spite of Quinnipiac being the number one team in the conference. This includes a 1-1 tie during Quinnipiac's unbeaten stretch as well as a 3-3 tie last weekend. Brown currently has 18 points, sitting in the last home-ice spot for the first round of the ECAC tournament. They could finish with as many points as 22 or as few as 18. That could mean being within reach of a first-round bye, or of losing home ice entirely and playing on the road.
Keys to the Game:
Solving Borelli is Cornell's main goal for the game against Brown. In spite of what offense it put up last time, Borelli would not allow goals to pass. However, he did allow three goals in during his last game, in spite of his 0.947 save percentage. Brown can be beaten. RPI and Union did it the weekend before last, with a 5-1 and 2-0 game respectively. Borelli can be solved, and Brown can be scored on, whether on even strength or the power play. Cornell is a dangerous team to play when it is on and last weekend has proven that even teams in the top of the conference need to watch out for the Big Red.
Brown is still at the bottom of the nation in terms of penalty minutes. They take just over five penalties per game, compared to Cornell's eight and a half. Cornell will need to be disciplined to avoid many power-play opportunities for Brown. Though they killed off 10 of 11 power plays last weekend, tempting fate and taking too many penalties does not seem like a good idea against a Brown team wanting a win to put them at 0.500.
As mentioned in the previous Brown preview, Brown has not had a home-ice advantage in any of the past five seasons. In fact, one would have to go back as far as the 2004-05 season to find a Brown team that hosted a playoff series. In 2004-05, Brown hosted RPI, beating them in two games before traveling to Colgate to lose its next two games. With Brown's precarious placing making it possible to finish with home ice, it would be the first time since the league was under its current composition for Brown to finish with a home-ice advantage. Additionally, the year before that, 2003-04, Brown had a first-round bye! The last time Brown had home ice or a first-round bye, Vermont was still in the ECAC. The travel partners were also all mixed up. Vermont was travel partners with Dartmouth at the time. Dartmouth's current travel partner, Harvard, was then travel partners with Brown. Finally, Brown's current travel partner Yale, was travel partner's with Princeton, who had yet to be matched with its fellow feline travel partner. Less than a decade ago, the ECAC looked different in more ways than one. Brown had home-ice as well as a first-round bye in the last ten years and the travel partners looked very different for half the league.
Speaking of Brown, when watching Brown play Quinnipiac, one can hear that Brown has fans attend, especially when the Bears score. For one of the better, but clearly not the best, band in the ECAC, this video exists.