Connecticut scored an extra-attacker power-play goal with just 1:25 remaining in regulation to salvage a 2-2 tie with the Canisius College hockey team on Saturday afternoon. The Griffs are now 4-7-1 and 3-3-1 in Atlantic Hockey play, while the Huskies are 4-5-2 and 3-2-1 against league foes.
“In a great weekend of two physical and fast-paced teams, we were able to get 3-of-4 points,” said Canisius head coach Dave Smith. “Special teams gave us a chance to win along with great goaltending today. Connecticut played very well but we were able to match it and were in a great position to earn the win. I like the way the team played this weekend and look forward to building on it.”
Senior Kyle Gibbons and junior Doug Jessey each tallied a goal for the Griffs.
Senior Tony Capobianco anchored the defense with 36 saves.
After a scoreless first period, Canisius struck first in the contest when Jessey netted his second of the season on the power play. The junior defender sent a blast in from the point for the 1-0 lead at the 6:01 mark. Freshman Shane Conacher and junior Carl Larsson both recorded assists on the power-play tally.
The Huskies eventually tied the game and finally found the back of the net 5:06 into the third stanza. A shot from the point by Joona Kunnas deflected high off Ryan Tyson and into the top corner of the net for the 1-1 contest.
Canisius, however, quickly answered back when Gibbons scored with a two-man advantage 7:12 into the period. The senior one-timed the puck in off a pass from sophomore Chris Rumble for his sixth tally of the season and the 2-1 advantage. Senior Ben Danford also registered an assist on the 5-on-3 power-play goal.
The Griffs advantage would hold until the dying minutes only to see the Huskies knot the game. Canisius was whistled for a penalty with 1:33 remaining in regulation and Connecticut pulled the goalie for a two-man advantage. The Huskies then took only eight seconds to score when Brant Harris knocked in a rebound for the 2-2 game.
Neither team was then unable to score in the extra session with Canisius killing off another power play to preserve the tie.
Connecticut finished the game with a 38-20 advantage in shots. The Griffs were 2-for-4 on the power play, while the Huskies went 1-for-7 with the extra-man advantage.
Robby Nichols recorded 18 saves to earn the draw for Connecticut.
Canisius continues Atlantic Hockey play next weekend with a pair of games at Army. The schools open the series on Friday at 7:05 p.m.
Game Notes: The Griffs had killed 21-straight power plays before the Huskies scored with the extra-attacker power-play goal … Connecticut was 1-for-10 on the power play in the two-game series after entering the weekend ranked second nationally with a 29.6 rate … Canisius remains unbeaten at home this season with a 3-0-1 record, matching its best home start in the program’s 15-year Division I history … Capobianco owns a 1.72 goals against average and .945 save percentage in his last four games after posting a 4.79 goals against average and .879 save percentage in his first four games of the season.