The men's ice hockey team will look to regain momentum at home this weekend in two conference battles against Trinity and Wesleyan.

"This weekend coming up is going to be just as hard as any other one we've had regardless of Trinity's or Wesleyan's record," said Jordan Lalor '12. "We're going to show up ready to play in the first period and keep a positive attitude, the rest will take care of itself."

The Polar Bears 13-5-1 (9-5-1 NESCAC) will host the Bantams 8-8-3 (6-7-1 NESCAC) first on Friday night.

"With three or four teams breathing down our neck, wins have never been this important," said senior captain Kyle Hardy. "The team understands how important each of these last four games are, so I have no doubts that we will come out with some fire against Trinity and Wesleyan."

Bowdoin will then face off against Wesleyan 7-8-3 (6-7-1 NESCAC) the following Saturday afternoon. Colby is also playing both Trinity and Wesleyan, and their performances could affect Bowdoin's postseason hopes.

"This weekend is as impactful of the standings as any," said head coach Terry Meagher. "For the four teams that are involved, points impact everybody and it's very exciting. The two things that we will be working on are secondary scoring and watching for trapping neutral zone play. You don't see a lot of it in today's hockey, but you have to be ready for it."

This past weekend, the Polar Bears traveled to Amherst and Hamilton. The Friday night game against the Lord Jeffs began well for the Polar Bears when, with six minutes left in the first period, Erik Olson '12 centered the puck to Jeff Fanning '11 who placed it between the legs of Amherst's goalie Cole Anderson. Bowdoin added to the lead in the second period when Ryan Carney '13 sent a slap shot past Anderson during a two-man advantage play. Amherst responded a minute later, collecting a rebound off a fast break opportunity.

Midway through the final period Amherst put away another rebound off a hard shot that Steve Messina '14 was unable to hold on to. Amherst scored 24 seconds later to put them up 3-2 for good. Messina had 19 saves in the loss.

Bowdoin also started well against Hamilton, with Fanning putting away a rebound five minutes into the first period. The Continentals tied the game later in the first period, and it stayed tied until Hamilton scored at the beginning of the period to go up 2-1. A minute later they scored again to go up 3-1.

Daniel Weiniger '13 cut the lead to one with a tough angle shot from the bottom of the left circle. Still down one with a minute and a half to go, Bowdoin pulled Richard Nerland '12, who had 44 saves in the game, to apply more pressure on Continental goalie Cam Gibbar, who was making only his second career start. With 58 seconds left in the game, the puck snuck through the Hamilton crease and Fanning was there to sweep it in and tie the game. Each team had four shots in overtime, but neither managed to score and the game ended in a draw.

"The team played their hearts out in both games and to deal with adversity against Hamilton and compete the way we did, there are a lot of positives from the games," said Meagher. "To play as hard as we did, I thought it showed what this team has inside. It's also a sign of how competitive the league is."

"Some people might say that the bounces weren't going our way or that we weren't getting the 'puck luck' that we needed, but we can't afford to put ourselves in those situations at this time in the season," added Hardy. "We need to start getting more pucks on net and making it more of a challenge for opposing goaltenders."

The Polar Bears will look to put what they have learned into practice this weekend.

"We have also been working hard and sweating it out this week in practice to prepare ourselves for the challenge ahead," said first year Harry Matheson. "We showed this past weekend that we will not be pushed around by bigger and more physical teams, as Bowdoin never has been in the past."