Nov. 14, 2008
West Springfield, MA - Sophomore Tom Mele scored two goals, including the game winner, and Chad Richardson added two goals to lead American International to a 5-4 overtime victory over Sacred Heart in Atlantic Hockey action Friday night at the Olympia Ice Center. It's the first time the Yellow Jackets have beaten the Pioneers in the team's last nine meetings.
The Yellow Jackets jumped out to a 2-0 lead with two markers midway through the first period. Richardson got things started at the 10:22 mark. Freshman Arcibal Nielsson fired a shot that SHU goaltender Stefan Drew (Oakbank, MB) appeared to trap between his pads. However, the puck trickled through Drew and Richardson swopped in to slam it across the goal line. Mele made it a tow goal lead with at the 4:07 mark. Mike McMillan fed a pass to a cutting Mele who slid the puck around Drew.
Sacred Heart got on the board with 27 seconds left in the first when freshman Matt Gingera (Winnipeg, MB) scored his first collegiate goal. With the Pioneers on the powerplay Gingera and Eric Giosa (Northville, MI) charged up the ice. Gingera slid the puck to Giosa who sent it right back and the rookie snapped a shot high into the net.
The Pioneers took the lead with a pair of goals early in the second period. Senior Bear Trapp (Regina, SK) tied the game at the 2:38 mark. Giosa sent Nick Johnson (Windsor, CT) into the offensive zone with Trapp. As he approached the net, Johnson dropped the puck back to a trailing Trapp in the slot who snapped a shot past AIC goaltender Dan Ramierez to even the score. At the 7:35 mark sophomore Patrick Knowlton (Colorado Springs, CO) found junior Dave Jarman (Toronto, ON) alone in the slot. Jarman stepped up into the slot and ripped a shot into the goal to give the Pioneers the lead.
Just over one minute after SHU took the lead, Luciano Primani blasted a shot from the blueline that found its way through a load of traffic in front of the Pioneer net and past a screened Drew to tie the game again. It took the Pioneers just 42 seconds to grab the lead back as sophomore Dave Berube (Quebec City, QC) scored at the 9:30 mark. Gingera found Berube with a pass in the slot and Berube spun around to his backhand and wristed a shot past Ramirez to give the Pioneers the lead after two periods.
It took the Yellow Jackets just 22 seconds in the third period to tie the score as Richardson blasted a shot that went off the crossbar and into the goal. Mele's game winner game 1:45 into overtime when the sophomore slammed home a pass on the doorstep of the goal from Michael Penny.
Sacred Heart and American International will close out their series tomorrow night at the Milford Ice Pavilion. Face-off is set for 7:05 pm.