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February 5, 2013

Harvard's Blackwell hopes to hit stride for stretch run

(Continued)

“We talked about getting pucks in deep. Their weakness is controlling the puck down low,” said Blackwell. “But a couple of times late in shifts we turned it over or they caught us in a late (line) change, and they ended up capitalizing.

“It’s just one of those things: (call it) snakebitten, no puck luck ... the puck’s just not falling for us.”

Donato, the former Bruin now in his ninth season behind the Harvard bench, concurred.

“That line, (center Alex) Fallstrom did break in alone once, Blackwell created some good chances ... but when we did have our chances, I’m not sure we took full advantage of them,” Donato said.

Three key elements -- routine, organization and time management -- have been the norm for Blackwell in-season. He’s careful what he puts into his body in terms of his diet, is always cognizant of what he needs to do in the classroom and giving himself enough time to do the best work possible; and he remembers (and still follows) something his former lacrosse coach at St. John’s Prep, John Roy, told him about the best sleep before game day coming two nights prior.

Blackwell had recorded points in three of his last four games before last night and has put up solid 3-7-10 numbers in 15 games thus far. He saw significant time against Boston College on both the top power play and penalty killing units for Harvard.

Prior to last night’s game, Blackwell had said the Crimson coaches were on him to shoot the puck more, believing he has the potential to step up and become more of an offensive threat. In that regard, he said, the coaches have been working with him on cutbacks behind the opposing team’s net and for Blackwell to use his speed and quickness to create such opportunities, getting those cutbacks and jams into the blue paint (”We call it ‘The Big Man’s Club,’” Blackwell joked) that often result in goals.

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