The varsity hockey team defeated a surprisingly stubborn Tufts six yesterday, 6 to 2, as the Crimson succeeded in wearing down the Jumbos and scoring three times in the final period. George Higginbottom led the Crimson scorers with a hat trick.
While Tufts never had any real chance of winning the game, it managed to keep the score down by harassing the Crimson in its own zone and by packing its goal. Captain Dick McLaughlin, Dick Fischer, and Stew Forbes scored the other varsity goals, while Paul Farrell and Bruce Benson tallied for the Jumbos.
The Crimson today was playing with an eye towards Monday's game with the Russians as varsity coach Cooney Weiland had his players experimenting on methods to stop the vaunted Red attack. In today's game, when the Crimson forwards lost the puck in the offensive zone, they would not forecheck; instead, they would go back to the red line, pick up their men, and then forecheck.
Tufts, on the other hand, forechecked continually, and gave the varsity a good deal of trouble in clearing the puck, especially in the first two periods. The Jumbo offense was limited primarily to a floater and to a few disorganized dashes up the ice.
Higginbottom scored the varsity's first goal only 38 seconds after the opening face-off, receiving a pass from Mike Graney and banking in a shot off Jumbo goalie Kenny Tondreau's pads. When Fischer scored, less than a minute later, it seemed a massacre was in the making, but the referee called the tally back, ruling that a Crimson player was in the Tufts crease.
The varsity first line scored again at 11:01 of the period when Higginbottom took a pass from Dave Vietze and pushed the puck in from out of the middle of a scramble in front of the Jumbo nets.
Four successive penalties severely handicapped the Crimson attack in the second period and for about ten minutes the varsity never had more than five men on the ice. Tufts managed to capitalize on the last of these misdemeanors at 13:28 when Benson took a pass from Farrell and beat Harry Pratt cleanly. The Crimson retaliated at 17:21 as Higginbottom got his third goal on passes from Vietze and Fischer.
As has so often been the case this year, the varsity played its best hockey of the game in the final period, running the score up to 6-1 before Tufts scored its final goal with only three seconds left to go in the game.