WATERTOWN, Mass.— The Sacred Heart men's hockey team had its 2016-17 season come to a close on Sunday night as Bentley's Ryner Gorowsky scored the game winning goal 30 seconds into the second overtime for the 3-2 victory at John A. Ryan Arena in game three of the Atlantic Hockey First Round.
The Pioneers (13-19-5) and Falcons (13-17-7) double overtime thriller was the first Atlantic Hockey playoff game to extend to two overtimes since Niagara and Holy Cross played three overtimes in the AHA First Round on March 7,2015.
Making the start at left wing for Sacred Heart, senior captain Evan Jasper became the program's all-time leader in games played at 148. Sacred Heart's milestones continued as senior Jordan Minello netted his 50th career goal with the short side shot to the top shelf past Bentley's Jayson Argue at 12:42 in the opening period. Minello became the eighth Pioneer in school history to reach 50 career goals. The Pioneers looked to take advantage of a power play opportunity in the final minutes of the first period, but the Falcons were able to force the turnover and Max French was able to put home the feed from Ryner Gorowksy past Brett Magnus' glove side at 19:25.
The Falcons took the lead off the rebound shot by Matt Riggleman off Mike Berry's shot from the point at 8:55. Sacred Heart looked to score in the third period, working the puck into the Bentley Zone for much of the period. SHU finally tied it up as senior Justin Danforth hit freshman Ruslan Rakhmatov on the trail for the wide-open shot in the slot to tie the game at 12:53 in the third period. Danforth picked up his second assist of the night while Minello picked up his first for the multi-point game. The game would head to extra time as neither team scored in the final minutes of regulation. After killing off a hooking penalty to start the first overtime, SHU controlled the puck outshooting the Falcons 10-7. Argue kept the Pioneers out of the net with stopping all 10 shots in overtime. The Falcons got the breakaway opportunity 30 seconds into overtime as Jonathan Desbiens hit Gorowsky in stride at center ice to take the puck in for the score.
In the close battle on net, Bentley outshot Sacred Heart 33-31. The Falcons went 0-for-2 on the power play, while the Pioneers went 0-for-2 in the game. Argue recorded 29 saves in goal for Bentley and Magnus recorded 30 for Sacred Heart.
The Pioneers finish the 2016-17 season with a 13-19-5 record, the fourth consecutive season with double-digit wins.
- Jasper surpassed Dave Jarman ('06-'10) to become Sacred Heart's all-time games played leader.
- Doherty with the steal, then dished the puck to Bavaro, but backhand shot denied by Argue at 6:17.
- Magnus with the spectacular diving glove save at 8:59 on the rebound attempt by Alexey Solovyev.
- Minello with the short side goal on the pass from Hladin at 12:42 to give SHU the 1-0 lead. He became the eighth Pioneer to reach 50 career goals.
- French tied up the game with the shorthanded goal at 19:25 on the feed from Gorowsky.
- The Falcons held the 12-8 shot advantage.
- Vito Bavaro with the Pioneers first shot on goal in the second at 6:20 as he drove into the slot, but Argue with the pad save.
- Danforth with the cross-ice pass to intended for Hladin who was wide open at the doorstep but were unable to connect at 8:12 in the second 12:52 Danforth with the centering pass to Hladin but the exchange misses. For the open look
- Riggleman with the putback off Berry's shot at 8:55 in the second period.
- Mike Crocock with the beautiful feed to Jasper at the right doorstep but Argue sprawled out to make the stop at 14:48.
- Falcons kill off another Pioneer penalty in the end of the second period.
- Nylen's slap shot from the point is saved by Argue at 11:02 8:58 as Jeff Carroll was crashing the net.
- Tsekos with the shot from his knee at 7:50 but Argue dived out for the save.
- Rakhmatov scored his second career goal on the trail as Danforth with the open look from the middle of the slot at 12:53.
- Minello with the look in front of the net but Argue makes the stop with 12 seconds left.
- Pioneers outshot the Falcons 9-3 in the third.
- Jeff Carroll on the shorthanded rush but shot hits off the pipe 1:55 into overtime.
- Off the Bentley turnover, Argue with the sensational backdoor stop on the one-timer by Tsekos at 13:23 in overtime.
- Magnus with the backdoor save at 11:40 on the shot by Andrew McDonald at 10:20.
- Minello with the open look in the slot at 15:01 but Argue comes up with the big stop.
- Magnus with the sensational save on the deke by Desbiens at 17:59 in overtime.
- Bentley won the opening draw and scored 30 seconds into the fifth period.