ROCHESTER, N.Y. (January 10, 2009) - A Division I school record tying five goals in the second period pushed RIT ahead of the University of Connecticut men’s hockey team as the Huskies fell to the Tigers Saturday, 7-4. Nine Huskies recorded at least one-point on the night but it wouldn’t be enough as UConn gave up a season high seven goals in the loss.
With the score knotted at one after the first period, a 5-1 second period gave RIT all the goals that it would need to win the game. The Huskies clawed back during the third scoring their 21st and 22nd power play goals of the season to cut the lead to two but it wasn’t enough. UConn was outshot 31-11 by the end of the second period but finished the game with 32 shots on goal.
RIT took a 1-0 lead for the first time this season against the Huskies. In the first three meetings, UConn struck first. After a flurry in front of the goal, Mike Janda got the puck past the UConn netminder junior Beau Erickson (Hinton, Iowa) for the early lead. But like Friday night’s match, the game was tied up before the end of the first.
This time the Huskies struck back. After having zero shots on goal in the first 10 minutes of play, senior Sean Erickson (Eden Prairie, Minn.) snuck a shot from the end line past the RIT goaltender Louis Menard to tie the game up at one-all on the second shot on goal all night for the Huskies. Sean Erickson got a little help on the goal from sophomore Jason Krispel who recorded his 16th assist of the season which puts him in a tie for third place in Atlantic Hockey for assists recorded this season.
For the second time in three games, the Huskies had a would-be goal waved off. Sean Erickson knocked another shot across the ice from right to left. The puck hit the inside pipe and bounced back out where it was kicked in by a RIT defender. But the kick-in was ruled a no goal and the score remained tied going into the first intermission.
In the second period, RIT opened up the game. Beginning with a three-goal attack within the span of 1:29, RIT chugged out to a 4-1 lead. UConn would bounce back just 25 seconds later to cut into the lead when junior Chris Ochoa (Santa Monica, Calif.) scored his first goal since December 5 on a pass from freshman Marcello Ranallo (Burnaby, B.C.). Ranallo’s assist was his 11th of the season which leads rookie scorers in Atlantic Hockey. RIT bounced right back and scored two goals within 30 seconds of one another to claim a four-goal, 6-2 lead heading into the second intermission.
The Huskies chipped away at the RIT lead during the third period with a couple of power play goals. UConn’s third goal of the game was scored at 3:51 by freshman Brad Cooper (Boca Raton, Fla.), his second of the year. He was helped out by sophomore Jeff Sapieha (Calgary, Alberta) and Matt Turner (Colorado Springs, Colo.) who recorded his first point of the season with the assist.
Three and a half minutes later, UConn was able to cut the lead to two on a five-on-three power play opportunity. Some quick passes by senior Jordan Behler (Port Jefferson Station, N.Y.) and Ochoa allowed sophomore Matt Pedemonti (Enfield, Conn.) to score his first goal of the season. Behler’s assist was his first point on the season and Ochoa racked up his sixth assist of the season on the play.
The Huskies are back in action Wednesday, January 14 at 7:05 p.m. against Bentley at the Mark Edward Freitas Ice Forum.