|1st||17:51||MNE||1-0||PP||Cam Brown (7)||Dan Renouf/9, Blaine Byron/15|
|1st||18:08||MNE||2-0||EV||Andrew Tegeler (4)||Nolan Vesey/5, Mark Hamilton/6|
|2nd||14:39||NOE||1-2||EV||John Stevens (9)||Zach Aston-Reese/24, Nolan Stevens/18|
|3rd||2:54||NOE||2-2||PP||Kevin Roy (6)||Nolan Stevens/19, Adam Gaudette/16|
|OT||4:41||NOE||3-2||EV GW||Matt Benning (5)||Zach Aston-Reese/25, John Stevens/21|
|Shots on Goal||1st||2nd||3rd||OT||SOG|
|Team Stats and Records||PP||PIM||SHGF|
|Rob McGovern (L, 2-13-3)||64:41||3||13||7||9||0||29|
|Ryan Ruck (W, 15-10-4)||64:30||2||5||5||6||3||19|
BOSTON - Matt Benning's goal 4:41 into overtime completed the comeback for the Northeastern men's ice hockey team (17-13-5), which erased a two-goal first period deficit to take game one of the Hockey East First Round series against Maine on Friday night at Matthews Arena, 3-2.
The Black Bears scored twice in 17 seconds late in the first period to take a 2-0 edge before NU clawed back with a goals from John Stevens and Kevin Roy in the second and third periods, respectively, to force overtime. That's when Zach Aston-Reese dropped a pass for Benning in the slot, and he rocketed a one-timer off the left post and in to give the Huskies the win.
The victory extends Northeastern's winning streak to eight games, the second longest such streak in team history, and is also NU's first home playoff victory since Mar. 15, 2009.
Rob McGovern backstopped the Black Bears for much of the evening, finishing with 29 saves, while Cam Brown and Andrew Tegeler both scored for Maine. Ryan Ruck stopped 19 of the 21 shots that he faced as NU outshot Maine 32-21 in the game. Both teams converted on the man advantage, with the Huskies going 1-of-3 and the Black Bears 1-of-2.
- Maine drew first blood late in the opening period as Cam Brown netted his seventh goal of the season with the Black Bears on the power play. Blaine Byron began the play by winning a puck battle along the wall and sliding it across to Dan Renouf at the point. Renouf then faked a shot and instead threaded a pass down to Brown below the right faceoff dot for a one-timer that got past Ruck.
- The Black Bears struck again just 17 seconds later on Andrew Tegeler's fourth of the year, receiving a feed from Nolan Vesey in the neutral zone, speeding around a defender and roofing a shot over the shoulder of Ruck to put Maine up by two.
- Northeastern made it a 2-1 game with 5:21 left in the second period on John Stevens' ninth goal of the season finishing off a strong shift from his line. After Zach Aston-Reese took a drop pass from Nolan Stevens, the Huskies continued to cycle the puck before Aston-Reese tried a wraparound that McGovern got a piece of. Stevens, however, was right on the doorstep and pounced on the rebound to cut the deficit to one.
- The Huskies leveled the score at two with a power play tally from Roy less than three minutes into the third period. With Brian Morgan in the box for slashing, Adam Gaudette took a pass from Garret Cockerill at the point, and fed a backhand pass down to Nolan Stevens near the goal line. Stevens then spotted Roy at the far post, and dished a backhand pass of his own across to the captain, who buried it to tie the game.
- Northeastern won it less than five minutes into overtime on Benning's fifth of the year. After Dustin Darou and John Stevens battled to keep the puck in the attacking zone, Aston-Reese scooped up the loose puck and headed towards the net. Aston-Reese then dropped the puck for Benning, who was joining the rush, and he rifled a one-timer from between the hashmarks past McGovern for the score.
Stats of the game:
- Northeastern is now 43-56-19 all-time against Maine, and 2-6 in the Hockey East playoffs.
- Friday was NU's third straight playoff game to go to overtime, and was also the team's eighth straight one-goal game in the postseason dating back to 2011. It was the Huskies' first overtime victory since game two of the Hockey East quarterfinals at New Hampshire on Mar. 15, 2014.
- Roy moved into a tie for 16th on Northeastern's all-time scoring list on Friday (141 points), and tied for 21st in career goals (61).
- John Stevens (one goal, 12 assists) and Nolan Stevens (six goals, 10 assists) both extended their point streaks to a season-long eight games on Friday night.
- Aston-Reese has two goals and five assists in his last four games, and also has points in 17 of his last 22 games (10 goals, 18 assists).
- Gaudette extended his point streak to four games (two goals, three assists).
The road ahead:
- The teams will meet again tomorrow night for game two of the best-of-three series at Matthews Arena. Puck drop is slated for 7 p.m.