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Huskies Fall to No. 10 Providence, 3-1

Jan. 18, 2018

Final Stats

HARTFORD, Conn. – The No. 10 nationally ranked Providence Friars put three goals on the board in the first period on the way to a 3-1 Hockey East win over the UConn Huskies Thursday night from the XL Center.  The loss, the fifth-straight for UConn, dropped the Huskies to 8-16-2 overall and 5-11-1 in the league.

Providence ran their unbeaten streak to seven-straight (6-0-1) and improved to 16-7-2 overall and 9-4-2 in Hockey East.  Sophomore Josh Wilkins scored a pair of goals to lead the Friars while junior goaltender Hayden Hawkey made 23 stops to pick-up his 16th win on the season.

Wilkins scored his two in the game’s first five minutes and classmate Vimal Sukumaran added a goal in the closing minutes of the first to give the Friar’s a 3-0 lead into the first intermission.

The Huskies got on the board in the third period as sophomore Alexander Payusov (Montreal, Quebec) scored his 10th on the season to cut the lead to 3-1.  The Huskies had a 10-7 shot edge in the final stanza but Hawkey kept UConn at bay after the Payusov goal.

UConn senior Tanner Creel (Arlington Heights, Ill.) got the start in goal, his third of the season, for an injured Adam Huska (Zvolen, Slovakia).  Creel made 27 saves in taking the loss, but kept the Friars off the scoreboard in the second and third periods.


 

 

The Huskies finished the night 0-for-4 on the power play while Providence was 1-for-2 with the extra skater. 

1st:
Providence took a 3-0 lead into the first intermission and Wilkins helped the Friars jump out 2-0 with a pair in the first 4:57 of play.  Wilkens struck for his first at 3:55, taking a feed in the slot from Jacob Bryson and whipping a shot past Creel for his 10th on the year. 

Wilkins made it 2-0 with a power play goal at 4:57, putting home a rebound of a Ben Mirageas one-timer attempt, his 11th goal of the year.  Bryson picked-up the secondary assist, feeding Mirageas.  The Friars tacked on their third with 1:56 left in the period.  Shane Kavanagh drove to the right post with the puck but was knocked off the play by a UConn defender.  Sukumaran trailed the play and buried the loose puck near the post for his sixth of the season. 

2nd:
The Huskies outshot Providence in the second period, 8-7, and got a pair of power play chances but came up empty to still trail 3-0 headed to the third period. 

3rd:
The Huskies finally ended their scoring drought 3:46 into the third period.  Defenseman Joseph Masonius (Spring Lake, N.J.) broke-up a clearing attempt by PC in the neutral zone and sent Payusov back into the zone with a feed.  The sophomore burst up the right wing and swung around the net slipping a wrap-around attempts past Hawkey, making it 3-1. 

Notes:
Providence won their sixth-straight against the Huskies and are 6-0-1 against UConn since the 2014-15 season.  The two teams will close the season series on Saturday night from Providence’s Schneider Arena. 

The Huskies have lost five-straight, their longest losing skid of the season.  The offense continued to struggle and now has scored three goals in 15 periods since the start of the second half of the season.

Payusov’s 10th goal on the year leads the Huskies.  He is tied for eighth in the conference.

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