|1st||0:54||MER||1-0||PP||Chris LeBlanc (1)||Brian Christie/7, Hampus Gustafsson/7|
|1st||3:36||NOE||1-1||PP||Torin Snydeman (2)||Mike Szmatula/3, Garret Cockerill/4|
|2nd||13:01||MER||2-1||PP||Jared Kolquist (1)||Mathieu Tibbet/4, Brett Seney/5|
|3rd||6:13||MER||3-1||EV GW||Jared Kolquist (2)||Dan Kolomatis/5, Hampus Gustafsson/8|
|3rd||15:53||NOE||2-3||PP EA||Kevin Roy (2)||Colton Saucerman/2, Dalen Hedges/6|
|3rd||19:07||MER||4-2||PP EN||Jace Hennig (4)||Mathieu Tibbet/5, Brett Seney/6|
|Shots on Goal||1st||2nd||3rd||SOG|
|Team Stats and Records||PP||PIM||SHGF|
|Clay Witt (L, 1-4-0)||58:43||3||11||6||9||26|
|Collin Delia (W, 1-1-0)||59:40||2||10||6||14||30|
Both sides scored a goal apiece in the opening four minutes on respective power-play opportunities, as sophomore Chris LeBlanc (Winthrop, Mass.) brought the home crowd to life with a quick strike just 54 seconds into the contest.
NU would draw even at the 3:36 mark of the first, but Kolquist would tally his first of two on the night while on the power play midway through the second to push the home side ahead by one heading to the third.
The first-year blueliner accounted for the game-winner early in the final frame before the Huskies clawed to within one with an extra-attacker power-play strike with just over four to go.
Merrimack, however, would add insurance off an empty-net marker by fellow freshman Jace Hennig (Port Moody, British Columbia) in the final minute, as the Warriors matched their entire win total from last year in only their 12th try.
After an early goaltending interference call prompted the exit of starter Rasmus Tirronen (Espoo, Finland), Merrimack went to the power play and needed little time to take the lead thanks to LeBlanc's first goal of the year; junior Brian Christie (West Chester, Pa.) and sophomore Hampus Gustafsson (Ljungby, Sweden) each assisted on the play.
Less than three minutes later, the Huskies went a man up on a goaltender interference call against Merrimack and promptly tied it off a dump-in that trickled in off freshman Collin Delia (Rancho Cucamonga, Calif.).
After that, Delia would settle in just fine, and his performance helped the Warriors build their lead in the second. At the 13:01 mark, also while on the power play, freshman Brett Seney (London, Ontario) fed classmate Mathieu Tibbet (Dover, Del.) up top, who fired a shot that Kolquist tipped in from the slot to give the Warriors a 2-1 edge after 40 minutes.
Despite four consecutive Northeastern penalties that gave Merrimack, at one point, a 5-on-3 advantage, the Warriors were unable to capitalize and still led 2-1 heading to the final stanza.
Then six minutes into the third, Gustafsson dug out a puck in the far corner and sent a diagonal pass to senior Dan Kolomatis (Basking Ridge, N.J.) on the blue line, who moved it laterally to Kolquist for a shot through traffic from the left point that tickled the twine to make it 3-1.
Northeastern took advantage of a late Merrimack penalty and pulled netminder Clay Witt before Kevin Roy tipped in a shot for an extra-attacker, power-play goal to bring the visitors within one. But Hennig buried the dagger with 53 seconds to go, as the Warriors earned a gritty win in round one of the weekend series.
Inside The Numbers
- Northeastern managed to outshoot the Warriors by a 32-30 margin
- Merrimack finished 3-for-8 on the power play, marking the first time this season that the Warriors' man advantage tallied three goals
- After Tirronen went down, Delia stood tall and finished with 30 saves to earn his first collegiate win; Witt, meanwhile, finished with 26 saves
- Aside from Kolquist's two goals, Seney (2a), Gustafsson (2a) and Tibbet (2a) all earned multli-point performances
- Merrimack won 29-of-66 faceoffs (43.9%)
Merrimack and Northeastern round out the weekend series tomorrow night at Matthews Arena. The Warriors will go for the weekend and regular-season sweep when the puck drops at 7 p.m.