"I thought today's game was a very good way to close the non-conference season," said Canisius head coach Dermot McGrane. "We got a quality win against a very good St. Francis team and now look forward to MAAC play. We have a couple weeks off to rest up, deal with a few injuries and get ready for the conference season."
The Griffs and the Red Flash (2-4-2) played a scoreless opening 45 minutes despite Canisius controlling the game. The Griffs held a 9-1 first-half shot advantage but five saves by St. Francis' Daniel Valcicak kept the game knotted at zero at the intermission.
Canisius took control of the game in the 52nd minute of play. Senior Ian Buzzio broke away from the Red Flash defense and drew a foul, which prevented a clear breakaway and resulted in a red card plus a penalty kick. Hudson stepped up and finished from the spot for the 1-0 advantage.
With St. Francis playing the remainder of the game short-handed, Canisius took advantage with two more goals. Sophomore Jon Cary found Hudson open at the edge of the box in the 63rd minute and the junior fired a shot toward net, which deflected off a St. Francis defender into the goal. Senior Paul Klopfer also registered an assist on the tally.
Hudson completed his hat trick in the game's 77th minute, netting his second penalty kick goal of the afternoon after sophomore Derek Maier drew a foul in the box. Hudson's hat trick raised his season goal total to four.
Overall, Canisius finished the game with a 15-14 edge in shots, while St. Francis held a 5-4 advantage in corner kicks. Senior goaltender Kareem Gray recorded four saves to earn his second-straight shutout and his fourth of the season, while Valcicak finished with five saves in the loss for the Red Flash.
The Griffs are now off until Friday, Oct. 5 when they open MAAC play against Rider.
Game Notes: Hudson is the first Griff to net a hat trick since Ryan Puntiri scored four goals against Saint Peter's on Oct. 17, 1999 ... The team's seven wins in non-conference play are three more than any other season since the Griffs' joined the MAAC in 1989 ... Canisius' seven wins are also the third most in school history and just one shy of the program's record against Division I competition (two shy of the overall record set in 1980) ... The Griffs have won four-straight contests at the Demske Sports Complex, their longest run since also winning four-consecutive home games from Oct. 12 to Oct. 28, 2007 ... Cary's assist represented the first point of his collegiate career ... St. Francis placed 10th nationally in the latest Division I rankings by owning a 0.46 goals against average.