The University of Rhode Island’s men’s hockey team suffered two agonizing defeats at the hands of the Lebanon Valley Flying Dutchmen this weekend. Rhode Island was outscored 12-6 in both games and fell to 3-5 on the season.
Friday night was a heartbreaker for the Rams, as they battled back from a two-goal deficit to tie the game at three apiece. However, the tenacious Dutchmen’s attack eventually overwhelmed the Rhode Island defense, and Lebanon Valley took a 5-3 lead after two periods.
To begin the third period, Rhode Island’s Brian Gara found the back of the net to cut the lead to 5-4. That would remain the final score as Rhody couldn’t find their offense even with the goalie pulled.
The following day, the Rams looked to avenge their defeat. However, the Dutchmen had other plans, and nearly ran the Rams out of the rink, tallying 7 goals on 37 shots. Starting goalie Keith Inman was pulled after giving up five goals in just 40 minutes of hockey. Over the course of the weekend, Inman surrendered 10 goals in 100 minutes of ice time.
“Our net-front coverage has been atrocious the whole season,” head coach Joe Augustine said. “We talked about it and went over things and it didn’t get any better. I feel bad for all the goaltenders. It’s like a shooting gallery out there.”
Augustine cited the defensive zone coverage and the amount of penalties as the big takeaways from the weekend.
“We had tons of penalties against us,” Augustine said. “They were 4-for-9 on the power play. [We have a] lack of discipline, lack of leadership, lack of everything.”
In just 120 minutes of hockey URI had 35 minutes of penalties. According to the team’s website, they’ve received 127 penalty minutes over six games, averaging over 20 minutes a game.
When asked what his team needs to do to stay out of the box so much, he bluntly recommended that his players should “start using your brains.”
URI, which came into the weekend ranked no. 15 in the country, now sit in last place in their division. The Rams turn their attention to their next opponent, Drexel University, this Friday and Saturday.