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Defense led the way for the Princeton Tigers in their 4-1 win against the Quinnipiac Bobcats Saturday to sweep the weekend series against their travel partners. It’s the second time this season the Tigers swept a ranked opponent, after defeating No. 10 Bemidji State on Nov. 25-26.

“We just had a lot of issues,” Quinnipiac coach Rand Pecknold said. “We just had a lot of guys who were not very good tonight. We give Princeton credit, they played well and deserved to win tonight.”

Sophomore and ECAC player of the week Max Verroneau continued his tear this weekend against travel partner Quinnipiac, posting six points; a strong follow up to his seven-point weekend against RPI and Union the weekend before.

Quinnipiac was held to six shots on goal in the third period, but ended up outshooting Princeton 34-29 on the game. Princeton coach Ron Fogarty credited the work from his defense up to pull out a victory.

“It was playing tight in front of Colton (Phinney); we have systems that the guys bought into and now have gotten better at from the past three years,” Fogarty said. “If you play tight underneath and force players to move around or you’re in shot lanes, it’s going to be tough to generate scoring chances. We collapsed pretty good in front of them but still pushed out.”

Phinney has pivoted in his game play, looking more poised between the pipes even while holding a 3.18 goals-against average. Fogarty attributes that to a stark shift in his mentality to his game.

“He’s not worried about the numbers. Seniors tend to worry about numbers and hoping that pro scouts come watch them play so they have a chance to play beyond. He got caught up in the numbers and we told him wins are more important. Scouts want to see you in the end of the year.”

On the other end of the ice, Quinnipiac switched out goaltender Chris Truehl with his freshman understudy Andrew Shortridge to start the second for his sixth appearance this season. Princeton came out to an early lead again after jumping out with a win yesterday at home.

Princeton now has a three-game win streak with three games left before breaking for the holidays. Quinnipiac has now lost four of its last five and will be on break until the Three Rivers Classic in Pittsburgh, where they will face off against Boston College on Dec. 30.

ECAC roundup

Rensselaer at Brown
The Bears took an early lead and tacked on again at the end of the first period to hold a 2-1 lead against the Engineers. Brown scored three in the third period to seal a 6-3 victory over RPI. The Bears improve to 3-9-0 on the year, while the Engineers fall to 3-16-1.

No. 15 Union 5, at Yale 3
Spencer Foo notched a hat trick, including two goals in a three-goal second period by Union, as the Dutchmen rallied from a 2-0 first-period deficit to defeat Yale, 5-3. Mike Vecchione had three assists, and Alex Sakellaropoulos made 26 saves in the win.

Dartmouth 5, New Hampshire 1
The Big Green won the battle of the Granite State in convincing fashion as Grant Opperman had a goal and an assist and Devin Buffalo made 24 saves. Daniel Warpecha’s goal just 16 seconds into the second period proved to be the game-winner.