You know, I don’t think I’m going to say a lot about last weekend’s games. I waited this long, figuring some inspiration would come to me, or I’d hear something somewhere else that would seem significant, or that I’d at least get over my disappointment somewhat. I AM over my disappointment to some extent – there are lots more games left in the season, after all – but it’s more a case of there’s really nothing to do now but wait and see. We’ve all talked a lot, analyzed a lot, offered opinions a lot.
We’re all aware that last weekend was an improvement offensively – more scoring, more different guys on the scoresheet. A step back on the power play, with no goals in either game, but almost no opportunities either – just one power play at Princeton and two at Quinnipiac. The Engineers have scored seven goals in their last three games, whereas it took seven games to score their previous seven goals. And Jacob Laliberte, who’s had an unreasonable amount of hopes piled on his shoulders, got his first and second collegiate goals. That’s undeniably a good sign, even if it now means more for next year than this one. And RPI was really in both games – especially at Quinnipiac where they came within 2 seconds of forcing overtime.
But the defense was soft last weekend. And the offense hasn’t improved to the point where it can make up for a soft defense. We’re nearly halfway through the season, and a third of the way through the ECAC season, and the Engineers are solid cellar-dwellers. We’ve seen some good signs, but so far there hasn’t been a game when it all came together and we could honestly say that they are on the right track.
So I think we’re all in wait-and-see mode now. We liked seeing more offense last weekend. Now we want to see them put that together with some strong defense and give us a game to be proud of, win or lose. Preferably win, of course.
This Saturday’s game against Union, the last game before the semester break, is a non-conference one, so they can’t start changing their ECAC fortunes yet. But a strong game and a win against an ECAC rival would go a long way toward convincing me and lots of other RPI fans that this season isn’t over yet. I know they CAN do it, I’m just waiting to see if they WILL do it. Let’s go, Red!