Senior forward John Henrion scored the game-winning goal for the Wildcats
DURHAM, N.H. - John Henrion (Holden, Mass.) scored with 53 seconds remaining in regulation to lift the 11th-ranked University of New Hampshire men's hockey team to Friday night's 4-3 Hockey East victory against 15th-ranked Northeastern University at the Whittemore Center.
UNH remains perfect overall at 4-0-0 and in Hockey East at 2-0-0, and the Wildcats are 6-0-1 in the last seven meetings against the Huskies at the Whittemore Center dating back to the 2008-09 season. NU moves to 2-2-0 both overall and in the league.
Casey DeSmith (Rochester, N.H.), the reigning Hockey East co-Defensive Player of the Week, made eight of his 18 saves in the third period, including two in the closing 38 seconds when the Huskies were playing with an empty net.
Austin Block (Thousand Oaks, Calif.) and Kevin Goumas (Long Beach, N.Y.) both recorded a goal and an assist for the Wildcats. Trevor van Riemsdyk (Middletown, N.J.) was UNH's other goal scorer.
NU goalie Bryan Mountain, who entered the game when the Wildcats tied the score, 3-3, at 6:40 of the second period, was credited with 18 saves and charged with the loss. Starting netminder Chris Rawlings stopped 11 shots.
NU struck in the opening minute of the game and skated to a 3-1 lead in the first period. Cody Ferriero corralled Dusin Darou's outlet pass and maneuvered through the right circle before centering the puck to Braden Pimm, who was alone in the slot and wristed a shot into the upper-right corner 33 seconds after the opening faceoff.
UNH tied the score, 1-1, with a power-play goal at 6:20. Grayson Downing (Abbottsford, British Columbia) slipped a pass from the right boards to Connor Hardowa (Edmonton, Alberta) at the point. Hardowa, who ranks third nationally in assists per game, snapped the puck across the high slot to van Riemsdyk, whose screened shot sailed into the net to mark the Wildcats' fourth consecutive game with a power-play tally.
NU regained the lead, 2-1, just 20 seconds later when Garrett Vermeersch controlled the faceoff in the right circle to Robbie Vrolyk, who advanced the puck to Joseph Manno and he fired a shot inside the near post.
The Huskies extended the advantage to 3-1 at 11:45 of the first period. From behind the net, Mike McMurtry found Ben Oskroba in the left circle and his shot went inside the near post. Adam Reid was also credited with an assist.
The Wildcats, who are ranked sixth nationally in offense and have potted at least four goals every game, leveled the score by scoring the only two goals of the second stanza. New Hampshire netted its second goal of the game at 2:51 to pull within 3-2. Justin Agosta (East Meadow, N.Y.) initiated the scoring sequence with a pass from the left point to Goumas in the right circle. Goumas quickly sent the puck back across the slot to Austin Block (Thousand Oaks, Calif.) and he lifted a close-range shot into the upper left-corner.
Goumas netted the game-tying goal at 6:40 of the third when he slid a nifty backhander between the legs of Rawlings. Greg Burke (Lee, N.H.) and Block assisted on the goal.
Northeastern utilized tic-tac-toe passing to set up Reid alone at the left post, but he lifted a shot wide of the post with 4:29 remaining in the third period.
Henrion scored the game-winning goal from a scrum in front of the net. Mountain stopped the initial shot by Jeff Silengo (Madison, Conn.), but Henrion jammed the puck into the cage to give the 'Cats a 4-3 lead at 19:07. Casey Thrush (Easton, Md.) also set up the tally.
NU immediately called time out and pulled Mountain in favor of an extra skater with 38 seconds remaining, but the Wildcats kept the Huskies at bay the rest of the way as DeSmith stopped two shots in that span to secure the victory.
These teams conclude the home-and-home series Oct. 27 (7 p.m.) at Matthews Arena. UNH's next home game is Nov. 10 (7 p.m.) against the University of Vermont.