Nov. 7, 2003
HAMDEN, CT - The Sacred Heart University men's hockey team came close to capturing its first win of the season on Friday night but fell in a hard-fought contest with in-state rival Quinnipiac University 5-4 in an Atlantic Hockey matchup. Matt Craig proved to be the difference maker with a goal and two assists for the Bobcats.
There was end-to-end action from the opening minute of play as both teams as both teams looked to gain the early advantage. Quinnipiac had a golden opportunity just a couple minutes into the period as Noel Henck turned the puck over deep in the Pioneers zone, but Kevin LaPointe was there to make the critical early save.
The Pioneers, now 0-5 overall and 0-2 in the conference, had their first scoring chance of the game when they entered the Bobcats zone on a 3-on-2. Drew Sanders took the shot from the near circle, but it was blocked as the Bobcats defenseman made the adjustment to break up the play.
The Pioneers finally drew first blood when Peter Giatrelis carried the puck into the Bobcats zone and made a late move, freezing the goaltender Justin Eddy, for his first goal of the season at 4:08 of the first period. Todd Spencer was credited with the assist.
Sacred Heart nearly made it a 2-0 game about eight minutes in as Kalen Wright fired a bullet from the blue line that beat Eddy, but hit the post. Just moments later the Pioneers would get the 2-0 lead when Peter Ferraro skated around the back of the net and buried the puck in the far corner of the Bobcat net for the first goal of his collegiate career. Assisting on the goal was Erik Roos and Chuck Metcalfe.
Craig Falite got Bobcats on the board in the closing minutes of the period just after a QU power play as he banged home a rebound to cut the Pioneer lead to 2-1.
The Bobcats, now 4-4 overall and 2-0 in Atlantic Hockey, tied the game just two minutes into the second period when Joe Testa blasted one past LaPointe to make it 2-2. Minutes later Matt Craig caught the Pioneers sleeping in their own defensive zone as he chipped the puck into the net, giving Quinnipiac its first lead of the game at 4:07 of the second period.
Craig gave the Bobcats a 4-2 lead on another defensive lapse by the Pioneers in their own zone.
The Pioneers cut the deficit to one goal when Rocco Molinaro camped out in front of the net and one-timed a centering feed from Barclay Folk 2:16 into the final period. Konn Hawkes had an opportunity to tie it on the power play just moments later but lifted the puck just over the crossbar.
The Pioneers managed to tie the game halfway through the third period as Marc-Andre Fournier was sent on a breakaway by Bernie Chmiel and blasted a shot past Eddy. The goal was Fournier's third of the season.
Just two minutes later however the Bobcats would regain the lead for good when Matt Froelich was credited with a goal when the puck squirted between the post and the left pad of LaPointe.
The Pioneers applied pressure on the power play in the closing minute of play and pulled LaPointe for a six-on-four advantage. SHU peppered Eddy with several shots but the Bobcat goalie calmly turned them away to preserve the win.
The Pioneers will be back in action on Saturday when they will again take on Quinnipiac at the Northford Ice Pavilion.