In addition to the action on the ice, the lobby in the TD Bank Sports Center was buzzing with the first event of the 2009-10 season. Quinnipiac men's ice hockey also coordinated a fundraiser for the charitable organization, Autism Speaks. The Bobcats raised over $6,000 through online donations collected by players and coaches. Donations were also being accepted in the lobby of the building and members of the Quinnipiac women's lacrosse team assisted with the selling of Quinnipiac merchandise with all proceeds going to Autism Speaks. On-site, Quinnipiac collected over $2,500 in donations bringing their total to over $9,000 raised. Following the game, over 120 youth hockey players were invited on the ice as a reward for their part in raising money for Autism Speaks. The players played a series of cross-ice games while being coach by Quinnipiac's men's ice hockey players. Individuals may still make donations to Autism Speaks by visiting Quinnipiac men's ice hockey's donation page.
The first period of the Bobcats' exhibition against Prince Edward Island gave Quinnipiac a glimpse of possible things to come. Quinnipiac tagged the Panthers for three goals in the period as Dalhuisen and Arnt scored. In addition, Barron, Langlois and fellow first-year Bobcats Reese Rolheiser (Edmonton, Alb.) and D'Arcy Oakes (Shanty Bay, Ont.) all picked up assists.
After Prince Edward Island's Aaron Dawson was called for cross-checking at the 4:36 mark in the first period, the Panther successfully defended several Quinnipiac odd-man rushes. Rolheiser took control of the puck in the neutral zone and moved it to Barron, who was waiting in the right face-off circle in front of the Panthers' net. Barron found Dalhuisen in the slot and connected for the first goal of the game.
Quinnipiac followed with a goal at the 15:23 mark when Langlois handled the puck just under the right face-off circle, behind the goal line. The freshman winger fed senior captain Jean-Marc Beaudoin (St. Paul, Alb.) for the shot on goal. Scott Zurevinski (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan) picked up the rebound and punched it past PEI's Jhase Sniderman to give Quinnipiac a two-goal lead. The Bobcats scored three minutes later when Arnt one-timed a pass from Oakes past Sniderman to put Quinnipiac out in front, 3-0, heading into the first intermission.
Prince Edward Island quickly responded with three unanswered goals of its own to tie the game with just under six minutes to play in the second period. Greg O'Brien put the Panthers on the board for the first time in the game at the 6:19 mark when he stole the puck on a Bobcats' break-out and sniped a shot past Quinnipiac starting goalie Eric Hartzell (White Bear Lake, Minn.). Hartzell had stopped the first six shots he saw before O'Brien's goal. He was lifted, as planned, in favor of Mathieu Cadieux (Oshawa, Ont.). Jarred Gomes scored the Panthers' second goal of the game at the 11:41 mark when he broke up another play in the Bobcats' defensive zone and slipped it past Cadieux, pulling PEI within a goal at 3-2. Mike Macisaac tied the game less than three minutes later. Dawson took control of the puck in the neutral zone and connected with Macisaac. With a Bobcat defender on his hip, Macisaac slid out to the left of Cadieux and chipped a shot over the first-year goalie's shoulder, bar-down, to tie the game at 3-3.
With just under two minutes to play in the second period, Quinnipiac retook the lead as Dalhuisen, Barron and Langlois all picked up their second points of the afternoon. After Langlois dug the puck out of the corner, he fed Dalhuisen at the half boards and skated out to the point. Dalhuisen fed Barron at the other point for shot through traffic. Langlois was able to deflect the shot past Sniderman to give Quinnipiac a 4-3 lead heading into the final period.
The final period saw both teams play to a draw, while Quinnipiac held an 11-7 edge in shots on goal. For the game, Quinnipiac led 31-15. On special teams, the Bobcats were 1-for-6 on the power play, while allowing one shorthanded goal while PEI was 0-for-2 with a man-advantage. In goal, Cadieux finished with six saves, including four in the third period to preserve the win. For PEI, Sniderman stopped 27 shots on goal in the game.
Quinnipiac opens the 2009-10 regular season this week when it travels to Columbus, Ohio to take on Ohio State University in a two-game series. The Bobcats and Buckeyes square off on Thursday and Friday, Oct. 8-9, at 7 p.m. Quinnipiac fans can follow all the action on the Bobcat Sports Network with flagship station AM 1220 WQUN. Quinnipiac will then host Bentley College in their home opener on Saturday, Oct. 17 at 4 p.m. at the TD Bank Sports Center in Hamden, Conn.