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HAMDEN, Conn. - Quinnipiac men's ice hockey senior Yuri Bouharevich (Montreal, Quebec) scored the game-winner with 2.4 seconds remaining in regulation to give the Bobcats a 3-2 ECAC Hockey win against Rensselaer on Saturday night at High Point Solutions Arena at the TD Bank Sports Center. With the win, Quinnipiac improves to 9-6-3 overall and 2-4-3 in ECAC Hockey play, while RPI drops to 3-12-0 overall and 1-6-0 in league action.
The goal, Bouharevich's third of the season, broke a 2-2 tie to seal a back-and-forth battle between the two teams. After Matthew Peca (Petawawa, Ontario) scored the game's first goal to give Quinnipiac a 1-0 lead, RPI scored two unanswered goals to take a one-goal lead with just under sixteen minutes to play in the game. Bobcats' captain Scott Zurevinski (Saskatoon, Saskatchewan) tied the game at the 6:29 mark before Bouharevich broke the tie and gave the Bobcats the win.
"[Ben] Arnt made a great play," Bouharevich explained. "Two defenseman pinched on him, and he saw me and got me the puck. When I got it, I knew I didn't have a lot of time, so I didn't carry it, I just let it go. That was a big goal, and a big win for this team and this program. We've been looking for a good league win."
Zurevinski also had an assist on Peca's goal while sophomore defenseman Zach Tolkinen (Lino Lakes, Minn.) assisted on the game-tying and game-winning goals. Freshman Danny Federico (Acton, Mass.) picked up his first career point on Peca's goal while Zach Davies (Smithers, Britich Columbia) and Ben Arnt (Oakland, Minn.) also had assists in the Bobcats win.
"It's good to see Yuri [Bouharevich] get one," Zurevinski said. "He plays so hard, and I feel like he's been waiting for a while to get this one. I'm happy for him, he works hard and he deserved it."
Junior goalie Eric Hartzell (White Bear Lake, Minn.) improved to 4-3-3 on the season after stopping 20 of RPI's 22 shots on goal. With the win, he becomes the the sixth goalie in Quinnipiac history to record 20 wins.
Peca's goal came at the 13:01 mark when Federico handled the puck at the point and blasted a shot on goal. Rensselaer goalie Scott Diebold made the save, but Zurevinski picked up the puck and slipped it to Peca who one-timed the puck past Diebold to put Quinnipiac on the board.
RPI's Jacob Laliberte tied the game at the 17:10 mark of the first period when he tipped a pass from Bailen in front of the net past Hartzell. Brock Higgs was also credited with an assist on the play.
Both team's were scoreless in the second period. Zach Schroeder broke the game's scoring drought with his first goal of the season at the 4:06 mark of the third. Higgs picked up his second point of the game whiel Mark McGowan was credited with a helper.
At the 6:29 mark, Zurevinski tied the game with his third goal of the year and his first since Oct. 15 against Canisius. Davies picked up a loose puck along the boards to the left of Diebold and fed Tolkinen at the point. Tolkinen's pass through traffic found the Bobcats' captain tape and banged past Diebold to tie the game at 2-2.
With less than a minute to play, RPI was called for icing, giving the Bobcats a face-off in the Engineers' zone. RPI managed to win the draw and sent the puck up-ice. Spencer Heichman (Yorba Linda, Calif.) intercepted the puck in the neutral zone and centered a pass to Tolkinen. Tolkinen once-again quarterbacked the play, feeding Arnt who was skating into the RPI zone. Arnt drew two defenders and then spied Bouharevich on the left flank. Bouharevich received the puck, skated into the left face-off circle and blasted a shot past Diebold for the game-winner.
Quinnipiac returns to action when it hosts Sacred Heart on Friday, Dec. 9 at 7 p.m. The Bobcats are back into ECAC Hockey action when they host Princeton on Sunday, Dec. 11 at 12 p.m. at High Point Solutions Arena at the TD Bank Sports Center.