STORRS, Conn. – The Sacred Heart men's hockey team was within one goal of the UConn Huskies twice Saturday night at Freitas Ice Forum, but couldn't overcome three power play goals from the Huskies in a 4-2 loss.
Will Rayner (Needham, Mass.) and Evan Jasper (Whitby, Ont.) tallied the Pioneers' goals Saturday night. Jasper has now scored in consecutive games after tallying his first career goal Friday night at Holy Cross. Jordan Minello had assists on both goals for his second straight two-point game. Andrew Bodnarchuk (Saskatoon, Sask.) made 17 saves in goal.
After a back-and-forth start to the game, UConn (2-2-1) got on the board first at the 7:37 mark of the first period. Patrick Kirtland forced a turnover in the Sacred Heart (2-5-0) zone and fired a shot past Bodnarchuk to make the score 1-0. The Huskies added a power play marker at 14:55 of the first from Jacob Poe, assisted by Shawn Pauly and Brent Norris. The Pioneers got back in the game with 22 seconds left in the period. Rayner deflected a Brian Sheehan (St. Louis, Mo.) shot into the net on the power play to put the score at 2-1 heading into the second period.
The Huskies extended their lead back to two goals 5:30 into the second period. Billy Latta scored on the power play, assisted by Jordan Sims and Tyler Bouchard, to give UConn a 3-1 lead. Sacred Heart responded with 11:20 to play in the period on Jasper's second goal of the season with help from his linemates Minello and Justin Danforth (Oshawa, Ont.) Despite outshooting UConn 13-10 in the frame, the Huskies once again took a two-goal lead with 2:17 left in the second. Latta tallied his second power play marker from the point to make the score 4-2. Neither team scored in the third period, with the Pioneers holding an 8-4 edge in shots in the final period.
Sacred Heart outshot UConn 32-21 for the game, the first time all season the Pioneers have outshot an opponent. However, the Huskies were 3-for-4 on the power play as Sacred Heart was 1-for-4.
The Pioneers wrap up their five-game road swing on Friday, Nov. 8 with a 7 p.m. game at Penn State.