CANTON, N.Y. The Quinnipiac University men's ice hockey team lost to nationally-ranked #15 St. Lawrence, 5-3, in the first game of the ECAC Hockey Quarterfinals at Appleton Arena in Canton, N.Y. Quinnipiac tied the game at 2-2 heading into the third period, but gave up three third period goals down the stretch.
Senior assistant captain Mark Nelson (Prince George, B.C.) scored his first career goal in the loss. The goal came in the third period to tie the game at 3-3 before a pair of late goals by St. Lawrence proved to be the difference. Mike Atkinson (Sparta, N.J.) had a goal and an assist in the win. In goal, Quinnipiac's Bud Fisher (Peterborough, Ont.) stopped 33 shots in goal while his counterpart, Alex Petizian recorded 22 saves for St. Lawrence.
St. Lawrence jumped out to a 2-0 lead after the first period on goals by Brock McBride and Mike McKenzie. The Saints' first goal came at the 10:17 mark when Zach Miskovic send the puck into the Bobcats' zone where it was collected by McKenzie. McKenzie put a shot on goal from the sideboards that was deflected by Fisher. McKenzie's shot was sent out in front of the net where a crashing McBride pocked the puck between the legs of a diving Fisher.
McKenzie tallied his own goal at the 15:28 mark. Kevin Devergilio put a shot on goal that was collected by McBride just under the right face-off circle. McBride put a shot on goal that was blocked and picked up by McKenzie out in front of the crease. His shot beat Fisher to the lower right corner to give St. Lawrence a 2-0 lead.
Quinnipiac responded with a two-goal second period to tie the game heading into the final period. Just over a minute into the second period, David Marshall (Buffalo, Minn.) sent the puck deep into the St. Lawrence zone where it was picked up and shot on goal by Bryan Leitch (Coquitlam, B.C.). Leitch then picked up his rebound, skated behind the St. Lawrence net and sent a pass out to Dan Henningson (Edmonton, Alb.) in the slot. Henningson netted his third goal of the year against St. Lawrence, all coming at Appleton Arena. The goal was also his sixth of the season while Leitch, the nation's assist and point leader, picked up his 45th assist and 57th point. Marshall was credited with his 24th helper of the year.
At the 17:49 mark, Mike Atkinson (Sparta, N.J.) tied the game with a goal immediately questioned by St. Lawrence goalie Alex Petizian. Scott Zurevinski (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan) put a shot on goal that was directed to the opposite side of the ice. Spencer Heichman (Yorba Linda, Calif.) picked the puck up along the sideboards and sent it to Atkinson in the left face-off circle. His one-timer was blocked and sent in the air over Petizian, who spun and caught the puck, but not until after it crossed the goal line for the tying goal.
The Saints' offense took off in the third period, outscoring Quinnipiac 3-1 en route to the 5-3 final. DeVergilio was set up on the play by McKenzie and McBride. The goal was DeVergilio's 10th of the season. Mark Armstrong scored on a power play, on a breakaway that left him one-on-one with Fisher. Armstrong was set up on the play by Shawn Fensel. Armstrong picked up an assist, along with Jared Keller, on Zach Miskovic's 13th goal of the season on St. Lawrence's last goal of the game to put SLU out in front, 5-3.
Nelson's goal came in the third period to tie the game at 3-3. Atkinson and Nelson broke out on a two-on-one, with Atkinson handling the puck on the right wing before dropping a pass to a wide-open Nelson. Nelson's shot came from the goal line and beat Petizian to the lower left.
The Bobcats look to stay alive on Saturday night when they return to Appleton Arena in an attempt to even the series at 1-1.