NEW HAMPSHIRE DEFEATED BY BROWN, 5-2
DURHAM, N.H. - Marco De Filippo recorded 39 saves, including 18 in the third period, to backbone the Brown University men's ice hockey team to Friday night's 5-2 non-conference victory against the University of New Hampshire at the Whittemore Center.
UNH, idle since Dec. 8, lost its fourth consecutive game - and third in a row at home - to fall to 6-10-2 overall. Brown, which had not faced off against an opponent since Dec. 3, ended an eight-game winless streak (0-7-1) vs. the Wildcats to improve to 5-6-1. The last time the Bears had beaten New Hampshire was Dec. 1, 1987, and the Bears last won in Durham on Jan. 22, 1930 (UNH was 11-0-1 at home between the Brown wins in 1930 and 2011).
De Filippo stopped all 12 shots he faced in the first period, then recorded nine in the middle stanza before his 18-save effort in the final frame. He made 11 saves spanning 11 minutes in the third period (from 4:20, when UNH closed within 3-2, to 15:29, when the Bears took a 4-2 lead) to preserve Brown's one-goal lead.
UNH starting goalie Matt Di Girolamo (Ambler, Pa.) made 15 saves and exited the game after two periods with the 'Cats trailing 3-1. Casey DeSmith (Rochester, N.H.) played the third period and stopped five of six shots he faced. Brown scored an empty-net goal with 75 seconds remaining to close the scoring.
UNH generated a 12-8 shot advantage in the first period - the Wildcats went 0-for-2 on the power play - but trailed the Bears 1-0 at the first intermission. Brown capitalized on a New Hampshire turnover in its defensive zone when Matt Harlow gained possession in the slot and his low shot towards the left post was redirected into the cage by Massimo Lamacchia at 8:34.
The 'Cats generated pressure late in the stanza. A screened shot by Connor Hardowa (Edmonton, Alberta) from the high slot was stopped by De Filippo, who directed the rebound to his right. Stevie Moses (Leominster, Mass.) corralled the puck and lifted a shot high over the crossbar, but UNH maintained possession as Nick Sorkin (Rockville, Md.) gained control in the right corner and skated to the top of the crease, where he was denied by De Filippo.
Brown extended its lead to 3-0 with second-period goals at 6:24 and 10:21. Jeff Ryan gave the visitors a two-goal lead when he skated through the neutral zone, advanced through the left side of the slot and tucked a backhander past Di Girolamo. Matt Wahl, who gained possession in the defensive zone and flipped the puck ahead to Ryan, earned an assist.
Jack Maclellan increased the advantage to three goals when he cut from the right point to the low slot and tucked a low shot into the net. Ryan Jacobson and Wahl were credited with assists.
UNH closed within 3-1 at 12:14 of the second period. Scott Pavelski (Plover, Wis.) won the faceoff in the right circle and Mike Borisenok (Watervliet, N.Y.) tapped the puck back to the point, where Hardowa's slap shot sailed into the net. It marked Pavelski's first career assist.
New Hampshire opened with pressure in the third period and closed within 3-2 at 4:20. De Filippo stopped Moses' initial shot from the left circle, but Sorkin collected the rebound in the low slot, shifted to the right and lifted a shot into the open right side of the net.
The Wildcats continued to generate numerous scoring opportunities but could not get another shot past De Filippo.
DeSmith kept the 'Cats within one goal with 6:39 remaining when he stopped Maclellan's penalty shot.
Moments later, Sorkin's pass across the top of the crease found Moses at the left post, but De Filippo extended his right leg pad to keep the score 3-2.
Jacobson, in the low slot, kicked down Matt Lorito's centering pass from the left corner and then tucked the puck inside the left post to give Brown a 4-2 lead at 15:29. Maclellan was also credited with an assist on the tally.
UNH pulled DeSmith in favor of an extra skater with 2:45 remaining. De Filippo kept the 'Cats at bay. Brown cleared the puck to the neutral zone and Lorito won the race at the center ice faceoff dot, skated leisurely down the slot and scored into the empty net to secure the victory.
New Hampshire returns to action Jan. 7, 2012 (7:30 p.m.), against the University of Maine as the second game of the league's Frozen Fenway doubleheader at Fenway Park in Boston. The game will be broadcast live on NESN-HD as part of Hockey Day in New England coverage. The Wildcats' next home game at the Whittemore Center is Jan. 21 (7 p.m.) vs. Merrimack College.