UTICA, N.Y. (WKTV) - The nationally ranked No. 8/8 Utica College men's hockey team used four second period goals to skate away with a 5-1 victory over Western New England University Friday night at the Utica Memorial Auditorium.
Four different players scored on the evening and senior Nick Therrien (Rochester, NH/NY Apple Core (EJHL)) stopped 20-of-21 shots for the Pioneers.
UC got on the board at 12:51 as senior Lou Malvasi (Lincroft, NJ/Walpole Express (AJHL)) batted in a puck out of midair from the top of the crease for his first of the year. Easton Powers (South Lyon, MI/Port Huron (NAHL)) and Steve Zappia (Buffalo, NY/Buffalo Jr. Sabres (OJAHL)) assisted on the play. That was the only scoring in the first frame as the Pioneers took a 1-0 lead into the first intermission. However, UC had a commanding 20-4 ledger in shots on goal after one period.
The persistence paid off as the Pioneers were able to net four goals in the second period to take a 5-0 lead. This time it was Powers who found the back of the net to get things started in the second stanza. Ridge Garbutt (Toronto, Ontario/Brewster Academy (NH)) and Mike Baird (Oakville, Ontario/Huntsville (OJHL)) assisted on Powers' second tally of the season. Then just over 1:30 later, Jon Gaffney (Dover, NJ/Springfield Blues (NAHL)) came streaking up the left side and fired one passed Golden Bear net minder Eric Sorenson. Luc Boby (Chicago, IL/Kalamazoo (NAHL)) and Trever Hertz (Jaffray, British Columbia/Quesnel Millionaires (BCHL)) assisted on the play. It was freshmen who scored the next two goals and Zac Lazzaro (Aston, PA/Kenai River (NAHL)) put in a rebound off of a Louie Educate (Chicago, IL/Aberdeen (NAHL)) shot and Kevin Kirisits (Buffalo, NY/Brockville (CCHL)) riffled home his third of the year off assists from Baird and Garbutt.
Western New England was able to spoil the shutout as Ryan Taylor put home a power play goal at 4:23 of the third period, assisted by Brandon Stroud and Brian Prost. Sorenson finished the game with 52 saves.
UC moves to 10-2-2 on the season and it returns to action Saturday as it hosts No. 12 Oswego State. Game time is set for 7 p.m.