Jan. 10, 2014
STORRS, Conn. – The Robert Morris Colonials opened a 2-0 first period lead and never looked back dealing the University of Connecticut a 6-1 loss in an Atlantic Hockey Association match-up Friday night at the Mark Edward Freitas Ice Forum in Storrs. The lone UConn goal came off the stick of sophomore Kyle Huson (Parker, Colo.), his first of the season, as the Huskies drop to 10-7-2 overall with the loss.
The Colonials (5-13-2, 5-6-2 AHA) rebounded from a 5-1 defeat at the hands of the Huskies in the series opener last night with six goals, matching the most UConn has surrendered this season (L, 6-1 @ Minnesota State, Oct. 19th). UConn drops to 8-4-1 in the AHA after the loss.
After falling behind 5-0 in last night’s loss, Robert Morris got the jump on the Huskies in the first period, building a 2-0 lead. Sophomore Greg Gibson opened the scoring at 11:59 with his fourth of the year. Defensemen Tyson Wilson made a pretty pass through the neutral zone to set Gibson free up the right wing. Gibson drove hard on goal and beat UConn goaltender Matt Grogan (Gilbert, Ariz.) to the far post for a 1-0 lead.
The Colonials made it 2-0 just over two minutes later as r-senior defensemen Andrew Blazek finished off a one-timer for his first of the year. Sophomore Brandon Denham fed Blazek at the point and he blasted one through traffic to beat Grogan at 14:12.
UConn cut the lead in half at 17:43 as Huson cleaned up a loose puck rebound for his first goal of the year. Classmates Patrick Kirtland (Cary, N.C.) and Joey Ferriss (Novi, Mich.) registered assists on the play. Kirtland drove hard to goal and got a shot off that Terry Shafer stopped but left a rebound for Huson to clean up at the right post.
RMU wasted little time getting back a two-goal lead in the second, scoring just 49 seconds into the action. Sophomore Matt Cope battled for a puck along the left boards and flipped a pass back to r-sophomore Tyson Wilson just inside the blue line. Wilson took a stride and snapped off a wrister just outside the circle that beat Grogan for a 3-1 lead. At 15:48, the Colonials scored the first power play goal on the Huskies in eight games, a streak of 28-straight penalties. Freshman John Rey fed a pass behind the net to junior Jeff Jones who centered it to a waiting David Friedmann who buried it for a 4-1 lead.
The Huskies went to back-up goaltender Robby Nichols (Dallas, Texas) to start the third period but the Colonials kept their foot on the gas, keeping UConn off the board over the final 20 minutes while tacking on two more. Junior Cody Wydo scored his 13th and 14th of the season at 3:31 and 11:36 to produce the final.
After allowing two goals on two shots last night and getting pulled, RMU’s Shafer answered with 25 saves to earn the win in the net Friday night. Grogan made 19 saves over the first two periods in taking the loss.
The Huskies were outshot 34-26 and went 0-for-2 on the power play in the loss.
UConn will hit the road next weekend for a pair of AHA games at conference leader Mercyhurst, January 17th and 18th.