The Bison hosted the Bryant University Bulldogs on Feb. 23 for the 2013 home opener, defeating them 10-8. Strong performances from the defense and face-off men, in addition to a four-point day for Chase Bailey ’13, helped propel the Orange and Blue to their second win of the season.
The visiting Bulldogs opened the day’s scoring, finding the back of the net just a minute-and-a-half into the contest. The Bison responded with a goal from Tom Black ’14 off of a pass from Bailey. Three minutes later, Bailey added his first goal to give the team a 2-1 lead. As the teams jostled for position, Bryant had a response to each of the Bison tallies. The Bulldogs tied the game up at four with 10:12 remaining in the first half.
During the remaining time, the Bison found the back of the net on four occasions. After the first two goals came from all-even play, the Orange and Blue took advantage of a 30-second shot-clock situation when David Dickson ’15 found Bailey for his third goal of the game. Following the tally, the Bulldogs were charged with an unnecessary roughness penalty, giving the Bison another man-up opportunity. Dickson then assisted on a another goal, this time to Todd Heritage ’14, extending the lead to 8-4.
“The offense was possessing the ball so well; we were able to have energy on our side of the field to be focused and fly around to make plays,” defender Jackson Place ’14 said.
Coming out for the second half, the Bison looked to maintain long possessions on offense to keep the defense fresh and run out the clock. Four penalties on the Bulldogs during the third quarter gave the Orange and Blue the opportunity they needed to achieve these goals.
“Our man up was really trying to kill the clock in the third quarter, something Coach Fed[orjaka] likes to do when we have a comfortable lead,” Bailey said.
After the teams traded goals around the five-minute mark, the Bulldogs found the back of the net twice to close out the third quarter and cut the Bison lead to two.
“Almost every game we’ve been a part of in the last three years has been a one goal game…[we] knew we had to keep our composure while still executing the game plan like we had been all day,” Place said.
Black would add another goal in the fourth quarter to reinstate the Orange and Blue lead to three. While the Bulldogs added a tally with 1:29 left, the Bison defense then locked down as goalie Kyle Feeney ’13 stopped three consecutive shots to close out the contest.
The Bison open Patriot League play at home against Navy on Saturday at 1 p.m.
“We are preparing for a very physical battle on Saturday. Any time you play one of the Academies, you have to be able to be prepared for high contact and be ready to play a full 60 minutes. We have to match their intensity and physical play,” head coach Frank Fedorjaka said.