Despite four goals outside the man advantage, Quinnipiac men’s hockey dropped a 6-4 contest against the Saints at the TD Bank Sports Center.
“I didn’t think our power play was great,” Quinnipiac head coach Rand Pecknold said, “but we still generated 15 shots on power plays.”
Two Bobcat goals came right after a power play ended.
Jeremy Langlois sent a wrister past SLU goalie Robby Moss 7:49 in the first period to tie the game at two after Jeremy Wick was called for interference. Scott Zurevinski scored seven seconds after a penalty kill to give Quinnipiac a 3-2 lead 7:02 in the second period.
“Statistically it is pretty deceiving I think on the score sheet,” St. Lawrence head coach Joe Marsh said. “They got two right as the power play ended, so you almost have to look at them as power-play goals. They certainly had a lot of great chances and I thought our goaltender did a great job.”
The Bobcats fired 43 shots on goal, including 17 in the first period alone, while the Saints only took 24 on goal.
“I thought we played pretty well offensively – actually I thought we were very well offensively,” Pecknold said. “We generated a lot of offense; we had our chances; we generated four goals and could have had a few more.”
Offense wasn’t the problem for Quinnipiac (7-7-1, 3-4-1 ECAC). The defensive struggles continued.
SLU (3-7-3, 3-3-0 ECAC) jumped out to a quick 2-0 lead in the first frame. Freshman Greg Carey scored three minutes into the game and sent the puck past Quinnipiac’s Eric Hartzell. Nine seconds later, Quinnipiac’s Zach Hansen fell after a won faceoff that created a two-on-one opportunity for SLU. Pete Child passed it to Kyle Essery, who slipped it past Hartzell.
George Hughes scored his first goal on the season when he shot the puck from just inside the blue line and it slowly slid past Hartzell. Hughes’ goal tied the game at 3 just four minutes after Zurevinski gave Quinnipiac the lead.
Hartzell’s struggles continued when he tried to clear the puck late in the second, but SLU’s Kyle Flanagan intercepted it and sent it past a diving Hartzell. Pecknold replaced Hartzell with Dan Clarke after that goal.
After allowing one goal to Colgate and shutting out Dartmouth in mid-November, Hartzell has allowed at least three goals in his last four games, including allowing four to Harvard. The one time he did not was when he was pulled against Massachusetts after allowing two first-period goals.
“We just kept giving them goals and you can’t win a hockey game like that,” Pecknold said. “They jumped on us when we made mistakes but we certainly would like to have some of those goals back. That’s part of hockey.”
Marsh said his team benefited from some timely plays.
“We did get some luck there and some bounces that went our way and that can happen,” he said.
Clarke stopped two SLU shots in the rest of the second, but only 23 seconds into the third Carey found the back of the net for the second time when he intercepted a Bobcat pass.
“I think the momentum changed a lot,” said Carey, who leads the team with seven goals. “We scored and everyone on the bench got up and was like ‘Hey we’re gonna win this game’ and I think that definitely shifted the momentum for us.”
Russell Goodman scored the first Bobcat goal on a one-timer from Langlois 17 seconds after Essery’s to cut the Saints’ lead in half. After Langlois evened the game, Marsh kept his team calm and focused.
“A few weeks ago we might have panicked when they came right back, but I think we kept our poise pretty well,” he said.
Zach Davies narrowed the deficit to one when he took a slap shot from inside the blue line after Hansen and Zurevinski pressured Moss, who finished with 39 saves. After Quinnipiac pulled Clarke to send an extra skater, Aaron Bogosian ruined any hope of a comeback when he sealed the win on an empty-netter with 24 seconds left.
Both teams will rebound quickly with conference matches of their own. The Saints will travel to face Princeton Saturday night, while the Bobcats face Clarkson in another home matchup.