MILFORD, Conn. (December 2, 2008) - A power play goal during the late second period followed by two insurance goals in the third put Sacred Heart up by three with 15 minutes remaining in the game. The University of Connecticut would tack on a late goal by freshman Pat McAuley (Mt. Sanai, N.Y.) who had two goals on the night, but it wouldn’t be enough as the Huskies would fall to the Pioneers 5-3.
UConn (4-10-0, 3-5-0 Atlantic Hockey) battled back during the first period to score two goals in the first for the fifth straight game, but the late Sacred Heart (4-9-2, 4-7-2 Atlantic Hockey) goals were too tough to overcome and the Pioneers would go on to defeat the Huskies for the seventh time in eight meetings.
After each team tacked on a roughing penalty at 12:35, Sacred Heart managed to go up by two goals in a matter of a minute in four-on-four play. UConn bounced back though at the end of the first and used the rest of the period to score two goals to tie the game up.
Sophomore Justin Hernandez (Farmington Hills, Mich.) tapped in the first goal for the Huskies with some help from freshman Josh Bernard (Fitchburg, Mass.) and senior Sean Erickson (Eden Prairie, Minn.). After some nice passes from freshman Brad Cooper (Boca Raton, Fla.) and sophomore Matt Pedemonti (Enfield, Conn.), McAuley put in the tying goal for the Huskies, the first of his college career, to even the game up at two-apiece. McAuley’s goal came on a five-on-four power play.
The score stayed knotted up for the majority of the second period but a late strike by Dave Jarman put the Pioneers up by one. The power play goal, helped by Dave Grimson and Matt Gordon, was scored at 18:31 and gave Sacred Heart a 3-2 lead entering the second intermission.
The Pioneers went up by two for the second time during the game when Bear Trapp scored his second goal of the game off of a UConn turnover just 14 seconds into the third period. They extended their lead to three at 4:19 when, off of another UConn turnover, Matt Gingera in a one-on-one with junior Beau Erickson (Hinton, Iowa) would sneak the puck past the UConn goaltender for the three goal lead.
McAuley added his second goal of the game halfway through the third period to cut the lead to two. He was assisted by freshman Marcello Rannallo (Burnaby, BC) and junior Chris Ochoa (Santa Monica, Calif.) who were the seventh and eighth huskies to earn a point in the loss.
The Huskies are back in action against the University of Massachusetts on Friday, December 5 in Amherst with a 7:05 start time.