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Quinnipiac Men’s Ice Hockey Midseason Grades

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Mason Marcellus celebrates goal in 7-4 win against Colgate. Courtesy of Quinnipiac Athletics.

Coming off of a national championship run, expectations are high for Quinnipiac Men’s Ice Hockey’s 2023-2024 season. The team captured their first NCAA national championship with a 3-2 overtime win over the Minnesota Golden Gophers back in the spring, but accomplishing that with a veteran-led team made it certain that the team would look different this time around. With all the new faces in the lineup, let’s take a look at how the team has fared about halfway through the season. 

QUINNIPIAC OFFENSE: A+ 

It was no secret that Quinnipiac was going to have an adjustment period this season on offense. Multiple key players among the likes of forwards Ethan De Jong, Skyler Brind’Amour, among others all moved on. The Bobcats still have a powerhouse offense that can get hot quick. The team has scored four or more goals in 10 games this season, boosting a 4.36 goals per game good enough for 10th among the NCAA. Juniors Jacob Quillan and Colin Graf along with first-year Mason Marcellus lead the way for the Bobcats scoring with 19, 16, and 14 points respectively. Marcellus has impressed so far, becoming a strong presence in Quinnipiac’s top-six.   

The Bobcats power-play is where the anchor lays. The team has scored 12 goals on 60 attempts. One place you can point to is the time missed by Colin Graf, one of the Bobcats’ go-to guys on the power-play. The power-play instantly got a jump when Graf came back against Brown scoring on both power-plays.  

Graf has been a force again for this team. Having the second-most points on the Bobcats (in five less games than most players) has made him a vital part to this team. After a breakout year last season, Graf has cemented himself as an elite player in the country and a weapon for Quinnipiac. 

A trend to hope to see going forward is consistency. After an up and down start on the score sheet, Quinnipiac has posted five five-goal games in their past six contests. The slower start could be attributed to a number of things from health, familiarity and scheduling. A way Quinnipiac can stay toward the top of the NCAA (in terms of scoring) is being more consistent on special teams, which we saw be better in their previous wins. Bobcats should hover at the top of scoring come season end. 

Jacob Quillan fist bumps teammates. Courtesy of Quinnipiac Athletics.

QUINNIPIAC DEFENSE: A-  

As per usual, Quinnipiac has a top ranked defense. It doesn’t matter the personnel, schedule, or goaltending, the Bobcats are always going to be one of the best defensive teams in the nation. They are giving up the seventh least amount of goals per a game at 2.14 goals per game. They don’t allow many chances and rarely make mistakes, taking 50 penalties. When they do, they cancel it with a 46/50 penalty kill.

They’ve also been able to compliment the offense well with junior transfer Davis Pennington leading the way with 10 points in 14 games. The adds on the back-end have fit in seamlessly, adjusting to a top two statistically speaking ranked defense while helping transition a top 10 offense.

One player who continues to impress and improve on his outstanding first year with the team is defenseman Charles-Alexis Legault. The sophomore defenseman is rarely caught out of place, helping move the puck up ice and keeping it there. As mentioned earlier, Pennington seems to have been chosen as the defenseman to take over that Zach Metsa role in getting a lot of offensive zone faceoffs mixed in with power-play time.  

The Bobcats have given up a little bit more as of late allowing 11 in their past three games, which is an expected stat to say when you’re playing two top 10 ranked teams with elite talent. Although losing their recent game against Boston University, Quinnipiac stayed competitive throughout the game, ultimately falling 3-2.  

The Bobcats defend the ice well and promote the transition game up ice. Quinnipiac’s defense is elite again.    

QUINNIPIAC GOALTENDING: B+  

Quinnipiac welcomed two new goaltenders to the mix this past offseason with senior Vinny Duplessis and first-year Matej Marinov joining the roster. To start the season, Rand Pecknold seemed to keep it an even split. However, Duplessis has seemed to take the net as of recent. Duplessis has had strong stats so far, winning seven of his 10 starts and holding on to a .911 save percentage. He was especially good against New Hampshire, stopping 32 out of 34 and giving the Bobcats a 5-2 win while also pitching a shutout against No. 19 Harvard. 

Marinov has put a few starts to his name as well in his first year with the Bobcats. The Slovakian native has only allowed six goals in his four starts. A smaller sample size, but nothing to overlook. 

Pecknold mostly likes to go with one goaltender, and Duplessis, who has gotten the past four starts and is the older goaltender, feels like the starter going forward.

The Bobcats have had a strong start to the season. The chemistry is beginning to become second nature, which will influence consistency. If they remain healthy, they should be another big player in the NCAA tournament this year. 


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About the Contributor
Aiden Barrett, Lacrosse and Men’s Ice Hockey Beat Reporter
Aiden Barrett is a sophomore from West Islip, New York. Barrett has previously been the women's ice hockey and softball bet reporter. This year, he will serve as the men's ice hockey beat reporter.

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