BURLINGTON, VT - The Merrimack hockey team was defeated on Sunday afternoon by the Union Dutchmen by the score of 4-1. The Warriors allowed four third period goals in the defeat after entering the third with the lead.
Merrimack (6-8-4, 4-4-1 HEA) will travel back up to Burlington next weekend for a game with the Vermont Catamounts on Saturday, January 5 at 7:30 p.m.
With 13:30 remaining in the third period Union finally snuck one past Tirronen as Daniel Carr grabbed the loose puck in front of the Warriors goal and found the back of the net. Assists on Carr's power play tally went to Max Novak and Matt Wilkens.
Daniel Ciampini netted the game-winning goal for Union with 6:30 remaining in the third period as he took the loose puck in front and beat the Merrimack goaltender. Assists on the game-winner went to Kyle Bodie and Wayne Simpson.
The Warriors opened up the scoring in the second period after Union nearly had two goals of their own after a post and a missed opportunity on a breakaway in which Rasmus Tirronen (Espoo, Finland) sprawled out and reached the puck with his right pad. Brian Christie (West Chester, PA) pounced on a rebound in front of the Union net and buried the power play goal after a Kyle Bigos (Upland, Calif.) blast from the point could not be controlled by Colin Stevens.
The Warriors nearly extended their early lead to two with just over 30 seconds to play in the second period as Mike Collins (Boston, Mass.) fed a streaking Vinny Scotti (Vineland, NJ) in front of the Union net on a penalty kill but Scotti could not beat the netminder.
The first 20 minutes was a back and forth affair with neither team breaking through with the first goal of the game. The Warriors had two chances on the power play but they were not able to beat Stevens despite outshooting Union 6-4.
The Dutchmen extended their lead to two with just over two minutes to play as Kyle Bodie beat Tirronen under his glove for his fourth goal of the season. Just over 30 seconds later Union iced the game with an empty net goal from Wayne Simpson.
Tirronen finished the game with 26 saves in the loss while Stevens finished with 20 saves in the winning effort.
For the game, Merrimack went 1-4 on the power play while the Dutchmen went 1-5.
The Warriors lose only their second game since 2009 when entering the third period with a lead. Before today the Warriors were 48-1-3 when leading after two.