Princeton Offense Remains Dormant As Tigers Fall To Clarkson

Princeton didn’t have the puck much, but when the (1-6-1, 1-5-0 ECAC) had possession, they created some quality scoring chances.

They just couldn’t put in the back of the net.

“[We] just have to bear down and put it through the back of the net,” Princeton coach Ron Fogarty said. “We had an open net and went to whack at it and it goes over the net. Just a couple of lucky bounces right now.

Princeton fell 4-0 to the Golden Knights (5-5-4, 3-1-2 ECAC), a team Fogarty used to coach with. With the loss, the Tigers completed a winless weekend in North Country.

The game marked the second-straight game Princeton failed to score — something that hasn’t happened since 2004-05, when Princeton was blanked in back-to-back games on Feb. 26 and March 4.

“You’ve got to remain poised and focused. Our guys will regroup here on Monday and prepare for Michigan State.”

The Tigers have played without several skaters, including offensive contributors Mike Ambrosia and Tyler Maugeri. Fogarty told the Watertown Daily Times’ Cap Carey that Ambrosia and Kyle Rankin will return this week.

The Tigers are on a five-game losing streak, and have been outscored 21-3. Despite the string of losses, Fogarty said it hasn’t been difficult to keep

“All of us have a mission in place, and collectively we know what that is and we’re still building towards it,” Fogarty said.

Clarkson put the game away in the second, when the Golden Knights scored three goals — two within 48 seconds — to earn a 4-0 lead.

Colton Phinney made his seventh start and finished with 27 saves.

“[He] just controlled a lot of rebounds, he saw a lot of shots here this weekend,” Fogarty said. “He’s going to have to be one of our best players throughout the season so he played pretty well.”

The Tigers allowed a goal on three power play attempts but failed to score on any of their five.

“[It’s progressing but we still have to execute,” Fogarty said. “Anytime you’re a man up you have to cash in. We’ll most definitely work on special teams this week, especially the power play.”

In the third, things took a scrappy turn after an altercation along the boards between Matt Nelson and Christian Powers. The situation escalated when, with less than 10 minutes to go, a Clarkson player shot a puck into Princeton’s net after the whistle had been blown.

The two teams tangled, and Clarkson’s James Howden and Princeton’s Joe Grabowski and Ryan Berlin earned five minutes for face masking and 10-minute game misconducts. Tiger freshman Max Becker also earned a trip to the penalty box.

“You want to play within the rules, and it was a good response by our guys to play with an edge,” Fogarty said. “We got to keep that edge and play between whistles that hard all the time, because you can’t have something stoke your fire to get that emotionally evolved.”

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