The Arizona State Sun Devils (1-7-0) fell to the Harvard Crimson (2-0-0) by a final score of 6-2 on Saturday night, marking ASU’s fourth loss in a row.
Despite the result, ASU coach Greg Powers believed his team played better than the Crimson throughout the last 30 minutes of the game, as the Sun Devils outshot Harvard 14-8 in the last two periods.
“I thought we were the better team the last period and a half… It didn’t show on the scoreboard unfortunately, but guys worked. They didn’t quit,” Powers said.
Powers has been juggling three goalies this season. Freshman Joey Daccord and senior Robert Levin have previously started games for the Sun Devils, while Ryland Pashovitz earned his first start of the season. The sophomore allowed six goals, saving 23 of 29 shots.
“I thought he played well for 40 minutes,” Powers said. “It’s no secret, I think Dax [Daccord] and Pash [Pashovitz] struggled this weekend. We’ve got to get some consistency back there, and when we do, we’ll start winning games.”
Daccord, out of every goaltender, has played in the most games (5) for Arizona State and owns ASU’s lone win this season, but Levin has the best save percentage (.881) of the three.
Possibly the largest issue of the night for the Sun Devils was their special teams. ASU drew five power plays and came up empty. On the other hand, the Crimson scored twice on four power plays.
“They dominated the special teams battle,” Powers said. “Tonight, that’s clearly where we lost the game. They probably had more grade A’s [chances] on their penalty kill over the weekend than we did over the power play, so we have to get way more organized and sure that up.”
Junior Seb Lloyd and senior Luke Esposito both scored on power plays in the first period for Harvard. Senior Sean Malone earned the first star as he scored twice, and junior Jake Horton and senior Devin Tringale had a goal a-piece in the Crimson’s flurry of offensive dominance.
The brightest takeaway for the Sun Devils was senior Robbie Baillargeon’s performance. He scored the only two goals tonight for ASU and has scored Arizona State’s last five goals.
“I think overall, not just me, guys are doing the right things making the right plays and I think I’m just a benefactor of that being in the right spot at the right time,” Baillargeon said.
The Sun Devils have played eight games this season—all against top-20 teams. The road won’t get any easier for ASU as it hosts No. 11 Michigan on Friday, Nov. 4.
“Getting swept sucks and especially not having won a game in the past four really sucks,” Baillargeon said. “If we have a good week of practice this week and bear down on Friday and play like that, I think we’re going to have a hell of a game.”