CANTON, N.Y. - Clay Witt made 39 saves, and the No. 20 Northeastern men's ice hockey team (5-0-0) scored four third period goal to erase a 2-0 deficit to top St. Lawrence on Friday night at Appleton Arena, 6-3.
Kevin Roy scored two goals for the Huskies, who improve to 5-0-0 for the fourth time in program history, and first time since 1988-89. Mike McMurtry also picked up a multi-point night to lead 12 Huskies who recorded points in the contest.
The Saint outshot NU 42-24 in the game and went 2-of-6 on the power play, while the Huskies were 1-of-5 on the man advantage.
The Saints came out hard in the first period, controlling the play and outshooting the Huskies 15-6. SLU netted the lone goal of the frame, coming from Drew Smolcynski with 6:55 remaining in the stanza.
Witt was tested early in the frame when several shots from all areas of the zone, and received some help from captain Josh Manson, who blocked a shot from Greg Carey in the crease when Witt was getting back into position.
NU nearly took a 1-0 lead seven minutes into the period when Dalen Hedges, stationed in the slot, took a pass from the corner and fired a quick shot on goal that caught the left post. The Huskies had two power play chances in the opening frame, but St. Lawrence created some chances of its own on the penalty kill, forcing Witt to come up with several big stops.
SLU broke through with less than seven minutes to play as Smolcynski potted his third goal of the season when he knocked home a loose puck from in front of the NU crease off an initial entry from Alex Hagen. The Huskies, who called a timeout following the SLU tally, began to turn the tide and generate offensive opportunities on goal, but Weninger was there to turn them aside.
St. Lawrence capitalized on a Northeastern penalty call when Alex Hagen netted his first goal of the season five minutes into the second period. After Matt Carey toe-dragged around an NU defender, he tossed the puck towards goal, where Hagen got a stick on it to sneak one past Witt for a 2-0 SLU lead.
The Huskies began to turn the tide after the goal, creating several chances on goal when the Saints were assessed consecutive minor penalties with less than 10 minutes left in the second. Belonger cut the deficit to one with 3:55 to play in the frame when he finished off a beautiful play from freshman Tanner Pond. After Pond won a face-off clean, he sidestepped his counterpart and threaded a pass across the crease to Belonger, who banged it home for his second of the season.
Less than three minutes later, the Huskies converted on its fifth power play chance of the night when Roy scored his team-leading sixth goal of the season with 1:51 remaining in the stanza. After taking a pass from Adam Reid, Hedges streaked down the left side, below the face-off dot and fired a pass up to Roy entering the zone. Roy quickly settled the puck before snapping one over the shoulder of Weninger for the score.
The offense exploded in the third period as Northeastern pounded home four goals in the final 20 minutes, while Witt made 14 stops to preserve the Husky lead. The first came less than five minutes into the period when Mike McMurtry picked up his second goal of the year when he came out from behind the net and flung a puck past Weninger, who was caught out of position.
The Saints brought the game back to even three minutes later when they registered their second power play goal of the night when Carey rifled home a shot from atop the right face-off dot for his first of the season.
It was all Huskies from there, who scored the game's final three goals, all with less than four minutes to play in regulation. Zach Aston-Reese recorded his first collegiate goal with 3:50 to play when he redirected a hard pass from Matt Benning at the point to give NU the lead, 4-3.
Roy would net his second of the night on a similar play about a minute later, sending a pass from Hedges over the left shoulder of Weninger for his seventh of the year before Braden Pimm added an empty netter with 52 seconds left.
The teams will meet again tomorrow night in the series finale at 7 p.m. from Appleton Arena.
- Northeastern is now 15-13-2 all-time against St. Lawrence, and 6-4-1 in games played at Appleton Arena. The Huskies also pick up their first victory against the Saints since Nov. 29, 2002.
- Northeastern moves to 5-0-0 for the fourth time in program history, and first time since 1993-94.
- Pimm now has a goal in each of his five games this season, the longest scoring streak of his career.
- The Huskies have received game-winning goals from five different skaters this season, including two from freshmen.
- St. Lawrence's first period goal marked the first time all season that the Huskies have trailed in a game.
- Aston-Reese netted his first collegiate goal in the third period, and Pond tallied his first collegiate point with an assist on Belonger's second period goal.