Quinnipiac Answers Fast Start By Skating Saints
Keeva Suthers put the St. Lawrence University men's hockey team out in front in the first period of Saturday's ECAC Hockey contest at People's United Center in Hamden, Connecticut, but No. 15 Quinnipiac scored six unanswered, including four on the power play, to beat the Saints 6-1. The teams combined for 61 penalty minutes on 21 infractions Saturday, with St. Lawrence whistled for six in the third period alone, including a major to sophomore Kaden Pickering. Quinnipiac finished 4-for-9 with the man advantage, while St. Lawrence went 1-for-5 with Suthers' tally on the Saints' first opportunity of the game. At 15:25 of the first period, the 6-foot-8 forward was backed in on the edge of the crease in front of Quinnipiac's Keith Petruzzelli. Petruzzelli made a save with his right pad on a shot from the half wall by Zach Risteau, but Suthers was able to backhand the rebound past the Bobcats' netminder for his team-leading eighth of the season and a 1-0 St. Lawrence lead. With the assist on the Suthers goal, Risteau picked up his first point since January 4 and has a team-best 22 on the season. Daniel Mannella made 14 of his 36 stops in the first 20 minutes, including a glove save on Quinnipiac's leading scorer Odeen Tufto with the teams skating four aside. Tufto got in behind the Saints' defense and cut across the crease before trying to lift a shot over the left shoulder, but Mannella waited him out and made the stop to keep the Bobcats off the board. Late in the second, with the teams skating four side again, Wyatt Bongiovanni sprung Tufto for a breakaway into the Saints zone and this time he beat Mannella with a quick wrister, bar down, with Bo Hanson right on top of him to tie the game at 1-1 with 2:20 to play. Hanson sat for a holding call following the goal, but the Saints penalty kill came up big, with four blocked shots and a pair of saves by Mannella to finish them middle frame even. The third period, however, was all Quinnipiac, as the Saints were assessed their first penalty just 1:40 in that led to Nick Jermain's power-play goal and the eventual game winner for Quinnipiac at 3:29. Mannella made the initial save, but the rebound kicked just out of his reach on the right dot and Jermain was able to snap one short side to give Quinnipiac its first lead of the game at 2-1. DiLiberatore extended the Quinnipiac lead to 3-1 with a blast from high in the zone on a 5-on-3 power play at 4:42 with the Saints killing Pickering's major as well as a minor penalty to Ryan Garvey. Alex Whelan scored back-to-back power-play goals less than two minutes apart later in the frame and Guus van Nes concluded the scoring with a wraparound tally at 16:37 to push to the eventual 6-1 margin. Quinnipiac finished with a 42-16 advantage in shots on goal. Petruzzelli stopped 14 of 15 faced for the Bobcats, while Evan Fear made one save in three minutes and 23 seconds of action late in the third period. With the loss, the Saints drop to 3-23-4 overall and 1-16-1 in conference play. Quinnipiac improves to 18-10-2 and 11-5-2 against ECAC Hockey teams. St. Lawrence will return to Appleton Arena for one final time this season, as they host Dartmouth and Harvard on February 21-22.