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TROY, N.Y. - Princeton took a two-goal lead in the first period and the Huskies couldn't catch up as they took a 5-3 loss to the Tigers in the RPI Holiday Tournament on Friday at Houston Field House in Troy, N.Y. Ryan Ginand, Chris Donovan and Alex Tuckerman scored for the Huskies while Marc Hagel led the Tigers with a pair of goals.
No. 4 Northeastern is 9-3-2 overall and remains 7-2-1 in Hockey East with the loss while No. 7 Princeton improves to 9-1-0 overall and remains 7-1-0 in ECAC Hockey. Northeastern will play either Mercyhurst at 4 p.m. or RPI at 7 p.m. in the consolation game on Saturday at Houston Field House.
Princeton took a two-goal lead in the first period on a pair by Hagel. On the first play, Huskies goalie Brad Thiessen came out of the net to play the puck in the corner and couldn't get it out of the zone. He tried to get back but couldn't make the save on Hagel's shot from the right boards at 1:36. Hagel gave the Tigers their second goal when he potted a pass from Lee Jubinville behind the net at 5:30 in the first.
The Huskies came out flying in the second period and tied it 2-2. Ginand scored the Huskies' first goal when he took a pass from Greg Costa, went behind the net and came back out for a wraparound and scored with the puck on the ice at 4:01. That made it 2-1 on Ginand's third goal in as many games.
Donovan's goal evened the score at 4:01 on the power play with assists from Alex Tuckerman and Steve Silva. Donovan got the puck, came across the slot and fired it just under the crossbar for his third goal of the season to make it a new game.
Princeton was able to get the lead back just over two minutes later when Kevin Kaiser redirected a Brad Schroeder shot on a power play at 6:35. Schroeder shot it from the point and Kaiser got a stick on it out front, leaving Thiessen with no chance and making the score 3-2 in the process. The lead was back to two goals when Derrick Pallis scored from the boards at 9:36. Four-on-four play had just ended and the goal went down as a shorty, the first Northeastern has given up this season.
The Huskies had a few good scoring bids that came up short in the second period, including a short-handed bid by Joe Vitale and Wade MacLeod that resulted in a Princeton penalty, and a good play by Alex Tuckerman as time ran out in the second. Shots were even at 11-11 in the second frame.
Northeastern needed some momentum in the third period and got a goal from Tuckerman at 5:40. Tuckerman fired a slapshot from the left side that Princeton goaltender Zane Kalemba made the initial save on, but the puck trickled through and across the goal line.
Northeastern wasn't able to net the tying score and pulled Thiessen in the final minute. Just after Thiessen left the ice, Princeton's Dan Bartlett got the puck and shot it from deep in the Tigers' zone for an empty netter to make it 5-3.
The Huskies await the score of the Mercyhurst vs. RPI game to see when they will play on Saturday. Northeastern will play either Mercyhurst at 4 p.m. or RPI at 7 p.m. in the consolation game. The game will be broadcast live on 890 ESPN Boston.