HANOVER, N.H. — Dartmouth’s Adam Estoclet netted the game-winner with 5 minutes, 52 seconds to play and added an empty-netter in a 4-2 triumph over St. Lawrence on Friday at Thompson Arena.
St. Lawrence’s loss coupled with Quinnipiac’s 2-2 tie with Union eliminated the Saints from the ECAC home-ice playoff race. Instead, St. Lawrence (10-18-5 overall, 6-14-1) fell into a tie for 10th with Harvard, which it faces at 7 p.m. today. Should SLU tie Harvard, the Crimson would hold the tiebreaker and the Saints would take the 11th seed into the playoffs next week.
The Big Green (16-9-3, 12-7-2), however, clinched a first-round bye and can finish no lower than fourth in the conference.
“Dartmouth did a tremendous job defensively,” said Saints coach Joe Marsh. “They have an excellent hockey team, and I thought we played them tough. But it was another one of those nights where a couple of mistakes were costly.”
Dartmouth came out strong against the Saints, scoring in the first 90 seconds. Eric Robinson netted the first goal with an assist from Doug Jones and Nick Walsh.
St. Lawrence tied it with a goal at 5:09 of the second when Nick Pitsikoulis scored his 10th of the year and sixth in his last 10 starts.
The back-and-forth match continued when Dartmouth regained the lead at 2-1 when Jones scored his seventh of the year from Evan Stephens and Adam Estoclet on a power play at 9:08. The Saints gave the Big Green six power plays.
The Saints again rebounded with a short-handed goal from Aaron Bogosian at 2:37 of the third.
But more penalties halted St. Lawrence’s charge, and Estoclet put the Big Green in front for good.
Greg Carey nearly tied it again in the final minute with an extra attacker, but his wrister struck the pipe and caromed away.
Estoclet scored on an empty net to seal the win at 19:34.
St. Lawrence goalie Robby Moss finished with 27 saves, while Dartmouth’s James Mello stopped 17 shots.
The Big Green faces Clarkson at 7 p.m. today to end the regular season.