Feb. 28, 2014
Derek Army, Noel Acciari and Kyle McKenzie each had multi-point nights and Jon Gillies made 28 saves to lead the Providence College men's hockey team to a 4-2 win over 18th-ranked Maine on Friday night at Alfond Arena (4,200).
The Friars, who took a 1-0 lead on a Brandon Tanev (Toronto, Ontario) goal at 12:32 of the first, never trailed and Nick Saracino (St. Louis, Mo.) scored what proved to be the game-winning, power-play goal at 11:59 of the second.
With the win, Providence (18-9-6, 10-7-2 HEA) moved into a tie for third in the Hockey East standings and posted their first victory at Maine since Nov. 10, 2007.
Maine (15-12-4, 9-7-3 HEA) suffered just its second loss of the season at home, while senior goaltender Martin Ouellette made 24 saves for the Black Bears.
The Friars took a 1-0 lead at 12:32 of the first period on Tanev's fifth goal of the season. Army (North Kingstown, R.I.) slipped a pass from below the goal line to the bottom of the near circle, where Tanev's sent a one-timer low past Ouellette. McKenzie (Aston, Pa.) also assisted on the play.
Maine's best scoring chance of the first period came just over four minutes into the game when Mark Anthoine had a partial breakaway, but Gillies made one of his 12 saves of the period on the play.
Thirty seconds into the second period, Acciari (Johnston, R.I.) hammered in a feed from Army in the low slot to extend the Friar lead to 2-0. McKenzie also earned an assist, marking his first multi-point game as a Friar.
Then at 9:52 of the second, Maine's Blaine Byron cut the Friar lead to 2-1 by sending a backhander through traffic from the low circle. Brain Morgan and Conor Riley assisted on the play.
The Friars restored their two-goal lead just over two minutes later on Saracino's power-play tally at 11:59. Army fired a shot from just outside the crease that Ouellette saved, but a crashing Saracino forced home the rebound for his seventh goal of the season. Army notched his career-high third assist on the play, while Steven Shamanski (Carberry, Manitoba) also assisted on the play.
The Friars extended their lead to 4-1 at 14:58 of the third. Acciari took a Mark Jankowski (Dundas, Ontario) pass and skated into the offensive zone down the far boards and held the puck until he found Trevor Mingoia (Fairport, N.Y.). Mongoia then fired Acciari's pass into the back of the net for his third of the season.
Down three goals late in the third, Maine pulled Ouellette with 4:55 left in the stanza and eventually got an extra attacker goal at 16:01 as Jon Swavely scored, with assists going to Mark Anthoine and Cam Brown. But it was as close as the Black Bears would get as the game ended with Providence posting the 4-2 win.
The Friars close out the series and the regular-season tomorrow night with another 7:00 p.m. game against the Black Bears at Alfond Arena. Providence enters the final night of the regular season tied for third place and could finish anywhere between third- and sixth-place in the Hockey East standings.
The Friars posted their first win at Alfond Arena since a 1-0 victory on Nov. 10, 2007 ... Providence is 8-3-3 on the road this season ... With two assists, Kyle McKenzie posted his first multi-point game as a Friar ... Derek Army posted a single game career-high three assists in the game ... After notching seven points (3-4-7) in the first 30 games of the season, Brandon Tanev has five points in the last three games (2-3-5) ... Army skated in his 143rd-consecutive game for the Friars, while Steven Shamanski played in his 125th-straight and Ross Mauermann his 109th-straight ... The last time the Friars posted at least 18 wins in a season was 2002-03 (19-14-3) ... Providence is unbeaten in five straight games against Maine (4-0-1) for the first time since it won eight straight from 1981-84.