WORCESTER, Mass. - The Northeastern men's ice hockey team (3-0-0) scored twice in the second before adding an insurance goal in the third period to knock off Holy Cross (0-2-0) on Friday night at Hart Center, 3-1.
Braden Pimm, Torin Snydeman and Kevin Roy all scored for the Huskies, who move to 3-0-0 for the first time since the 1993-94 season. Derick Roy made 26 saves in goal while his counterpart, Matt Ginn, had 34 stops.
NU outshot the Crusaders 37-27 in the game, and was 0-of-5 on the power play. Holy Cross went 1-of-6 on the man advantage and won 47-of-86 draws.
Northeastern came out and set the tone from the opening face-off in the first period, outshooting Holy Cross 18-5 and maintaining puck possession in the Crusader zone for a majority of the frame. The Crusader defense helped limit the pucks that Ginn saw, however, with nine blocks.
Kevin Roy had a chance to put the Huskies up 1-0 early on when he redirected a Braden Pimm in the slot on goal, but Ginn was there to flash the left pad and send the puck into the corner. Minutes later, Nathan Ferriero made a bid for his first collegiate goal after taking a feed from Mike Szmatula atop the face-off dot before whistling a wrister off the mask of Ginn.
NU was awarded a pair of power plays during the opening 20 minutes, and tossed three shots on goal, including one from Cody Ferriero from inside the blue line that went off the stick of Ginn and into the protective netting. John Stevens almost cashed in on Northeastern's second man advantage of the frame when he fired a shot on goal from the doorstep, but once again Ginn got across to deny the chance.
At the other end of the ice, Roy was there when called upon, making five first period saves, the toughest coming late in the frame on a shot from Shayne Stockton off a clean face-off win by the Crusaders. Roy also stoned Adam Schmidt with less than 30 seconds to play in the stanza with a big blocker save as Schmidt flew down the left side of the ice.
Ginn continued to stifle the Northeastern offense into the second period, making save after save through the first 10 minutes of the middle frame. Adam Reid had a chance to put NU up five minutes into the stanza when he followed his initial blocked shot with another from atop the crease that Ginn got a piece of.
After the teams traded penalties with about 13 minutes left in the period, Holy Cross generated it most pressure on Roy in the frame, forcing the redshirt-freshman to make three straight saves during the shift, but Roy was up to the task.
Pimm helped the NU cause on the defensive end with a stick check on Schmidt near the Northeastern goal, sending the Huskies the other way. On the transition, Pimm was rewarded for his efforts when he took a pass from Roy, got Ginn to commit to the left before swiftly cutting right and sending a backhand into the net for his third goal of the season with 11 minutes left in the second.
A Holy Cross surge after the goal forced Roy and the NU defense to come up big, and the defensive corps did just that with several blocked shots and limiting the Crusaders' scoring chances.
Northeastern took a two-goal lead with 3:50 remaining in the frame when Snydeman netted his first goal as a Husky following crisp passing from NU. Szmatula began the play my dropping a pass to Zach Aston-Reese as they entered the zone. Aston-Reese then threaded a pass across to Snydeman, who did the rest, beating Ginn with a backhand form the right side.
The Huskies were assessed two minor penalties in a span of 34 seconds early in the third period, and Holy Cross took advantage of the five-on-three power play to cut the deficit to one 1:47 into the frame. After taking a pass from Nick Finn, Joe McNamara hit Stockton with a pass at the point. Stockton then took a stride towards goal before firing a shot through traffic that beat Roy blocker side for his first goal of the season.
NU would strike back less than three minutes later when Roy potted his fourth of the season. After taking a pass from Saucerman transitioning out of the NU zone, Pimm sent the puck up to Roy entering the zone. Roy then skated in on Ginn and let off a wrister that caught the right shoulder of Ginn before continuing into the goal.
The Huskies would kill off three more minor penalties following the insurance marker, with Roy coming up with 10 third period saves.
The teams will meet again tomorrow night in the series finale at 7 p.m. from Matthews Arena.
- Northeastern is now 5-2-0 all-time against Holy Cross, and picks up its first victory against the Crusaders since Dec. 30, 2006.
- The Huskies improved to 3-0-0 on the season for the first time since the 1993-94 season.
- Pimm extended his scoring streak to three games, while Roy (three goals, four assists) and Szmatula (six assists) extended their point streaks to three games.
- Kevin Roy recorded his third straight multi-point game of the season, and 13th career, while Pimm picked up his 12th career multi-point effort, and first of the season.