After a slow start in the first period of Saturday’s overtime defeat of St. Joseph’s, coach Jerry Roberts knew Temple ice hockey wouldn’t have that option come Sunday when his squad traveled to Norwalk Ct. to take on New York University.
“It was going to take a full 60 minutes to win this game,” Roberts said.
Yet the opening period proved to be a challenge once again for Temple, as the Owls fell 5-2 to NYU after the Violets jumped on Temple in the early going with two goals in the game’s first five minutes.
For the Owls, the loss snapped a four-game winning streak.
“We got off to the same slow start and that cost us the game tonight,” Roberts said. “The first period was the difference. It took too long to really get in the game and we weren’t able to catch up.”
“We came out a little flat,” senior defenseman Jordan Lawrence said.“[NYU] had two fluky goals early on and neither were [junior goalie Chris Mullen’s] fault.It’s tough to come up here and play right away. We played alright in the first, but two fluky goals early on hurt us.”
Yet the second period failed to prove any easier for Temple, as NYU scored twice more to take a commanding 4-0 lead heading into the final frame.
The Violets would go up 5-0 early in the third period before Temple goals from freshman forward Greg Malinowski and senior defenseman Andrew Trainor later in the period capped the scoring.
“The fifth goal in third was definitely the backbreaker,” Roberts said.“We all felt that we had an opportunity going into the third to come back. It was a long shot but we felt we had a shot,”
“We called a timeout mid-way through the third when we were down 5-0,” Roberts added. We tried to keep fighting in a big hole and we did that with [two late goals].”
As was the case Saturday in the win over SJU, penalties proved problematic once again as the Owls were unable to find a rhythm on the fore-check throughout.
Extended amounts of time spent shorthanded combined with the slow start doomed the Owls despite playing an NYU team that was playing its third game in as many days.
“When you play a better team and commit penalties like that, it’s going to come back and hurt you,” Lawrence said.“St. Joes is not as strong as NYU and taking a lot more penalties against a better team like them, it’s going to come back and bite you. That’s what happened tonight.”
The Owls fell to 12-7 after Sunday’s loss, one that their coach felt was winnable from the start.
“This was a winnable game,” Roberts said. [NYU] is a good team, but this game was one that we could’ve had. If you don’t put together a full 60 minutes of solid play, you don’t have a shot in games like these.”
Heading into a holiday week, the Owls will have nearly two weeks to right the ship in time to face the University of Maryland away on Nov. 30.
Andrew Parent can be reached at email@example.com or on twitter @daParent93.