Jan. 4, 2005
MILFORD, CT (January 4) - The Sacred Heart Pioneers (6-10-1, 6-2-1 AHA) fell to defending conference champions Holy Cross Crusaders (8-6-4, 5-3-2 AHA) in overtime despite a stellar 40-save performance by senior Kevin LaPointe by the final score of 3-2 in Atlantic Hockey action Tuesday night at the Milford Ice Pavilion. The loss marks the first time Sacred Heart has been beaten at the Milford Ice Pavilion this season.
The Pioneers would open the scoring 8:37 into the first period on the first of two Garrett Larson goals. Rocco Molinaro started the play along the dasher to the left of Holy Cross goaltender Tony Quesada. Molinaro dished the puck to Nick Kary, who then spotted a wide-open Larson crashing on the weak side. Kary slid the puck over to Larson and he banged it in for a 1-0 lead.
The Pioneers would double their lead to 2-0 just 31 seconds into the second frame. Molinaro sent a pass into the Holy Cross zone, which sprung Larson for a prime scoring opportunity. After Quesada turned his initial shot away, Larson managed to get his stick on the rebound in mid-air and direct it down into the goal. Kary also picked up an assist on the play.
Holy Cross would come to life midway through the second period, capitalizing on a major penalty to Sacred Heart's Todd Spencer. Andrew Weber made the Pioneers pay for the penalty just 17 seconds into the extended power play slicing the SHU lead to 2-1. It looked as if the Crusaders had tied the game with 5:37 remaining in the second as Weber had banged home a rebound, but the referee determined that he was in the crease and disallowed the goal.
The Crusaders would, however, capitalize on their next power play opportunity with a Matt Burke power play goal. Burke banged home a James Sixsmith rebound to knot the contest at 2-2 with 2:36 remaining in the second period.
Neither team would break through in the third as the game headed into the extra frame. The overtime period wouldn't last long as Pierre Napert-Frenette scored on the only shot of the period. Tyler McGregor found Napert-Frenette alone in front after taking a pass from Andrew McKay. Napert-Frenette then quickly slid the puck past LaPointe before he could get in position to make the save.
LaPointe finished the night with 40 saves dropping his record to 5-7-1 while Quesada improved his record to 5-3-3 making 21 stops.
The Pioneers return to action on January 14 for the road game of a home-in-home series with Bentley. Face off for both games is at 7:00 PM.