January 11, 2014

No. 7 Quinnipiac Men's Ice Hockey Defeats RPI, 6-2

HAMDEN, Conn. –Six different Quinnipiac skaters scored as the nationally-ranked No. 7 Bobcats rolled to a 6-2 win against Rensselaer in an ECAC Hockey match-up at High Point Solutions Arena at the TD Bank Sports Center. Quinnipiac improves to 17-3-5 overall and 8-2-3 in ECAC Hockey play while RPI drops to 8-10-4 overall and 3-5-3 in ECAC action. 

Sam Anas
(Potomac, Md.) had a goal and two assists while Kellen Jones (Montrose, British Columbia) and Matthew Peca (Petawawa, Ontario) had a goal and an assist each. Tim Clifton (Matawan, N.J.) had two assists in the Bobcats' win while Alex Barron (Glendora, Calif.), Brayden Sherbinin (Kelowna, British Columbia) and Bryce Van Brabant (Morinville, Alberta) also scored for Quinnipiac. Michael Garteig (Prince George, British Columbia) picked up his NCAA leading 17th win after stopping 16 of RPI's 18 shots on goal.  
Anas scored his team-leading 14th goal of the season four-minutes-and-thirty-seven-seconds into the first period when Kellen Jones picked off a pass in the Engineers' defensive zone and skated toward the goal line. After RPI goalie Scott Diebold committed to Jones, he zipped a pass to the goal-front for Anas who banged home the game's first goal.

With just under nine minutes to play in the period, Barron gave Quinnipiac a 2-0 lead with a shot from the face-off circle to Diebold's left. Tim Clifton carried the puck over the blue line and handed it off to Cory Hibbeler (St. Charles, Mo.). Hibbeler drove toward the RPI net, turned and snapped a pass between the face-off circles to Barron for the goal.

With a little more than five minutes to play in the period, Kellen Jones and Anas picked up their second points of the night on a 5-on-3 power play. Peca fed Anas in the middle of the face-off circles who one-timed a shot off of Diebold's chest. Jones collected the rebound on the doorstep and back-handed a shot to the top right corner to give Quinnipiac a 3-0 lead that last into the first intermission.

The Bobcats added two more goals in the third period with Sherbinin netting his second of the year while Peca picked up his sixth goal of the season. Sherbinin's goal came off a draw in front of RPI's goal when Tim Clifton won the face-off over to Tommy Schutt (Chanhassan, Minnesota). Schutt skated toward the Engineers net before tipping the puck to Sherbinin in the slot for the one-timer.

Peca's second point of the night came on the power play with 3/10th of a second left in the second frame. Devon Toews (Abbotsford, British Columbia) handled the puck along the boards before sending a pass to Anas behind the RPI goal. Anas launched a pass to Peca for the one-timer to beat Diebold and give the Bobcats a 5-0 lead after two periods.

Inside the final 10 minutes of play, RPI scored twice to cut the Bobcats lead to three goals with goals on back-to-back power play opportunites. RPI's first goal came from Matt Neal who one-timed a shot from slot off a pass from Ryan Haggerty from the boards. Haggerty took a pass from Brock Higgs and threw it on goal where Neal was able to collect the puck and bang it past Garteig. Less than two minutes later, Matt Tinordi re-directed a pass from Jimmy Devito past Garteig to pull the Engineers within three goals.

After RPI was whistled for having too many men on the ice, Quinnipiac scored its third power play goal of the night to increase its lead to 6-2. Derek Smith (Apple Valley, Minn.) moved up the half boards before centering a pass to Zach Tolkinen (Lino Lakes, Minn.) at the point. Tolkinen fired a shot on goal where Van Brabant was moving to screen RPI's goalie. Van Brabant was able to get his stick on it and tip it past RPI's Jake Soffer to give Quinnipiac a four-goal lead with under eight minutes to play.

The Bobcats return to action against Merrimack next weekend, hosting the Warriors on Friday, Jan. 17 for the first contest of a two-game set that includes a trip to Merrimack's home ice on Saturday, Jan. 18.