MILFORD, Conn. – Powered by shorthanded goals by Connor Doherty (Holden, Mass.) and Kory Kennedy (Midhurst, Ont.), the Sacred Heart men's hockey team completed a weekend sweep of the Air Force Falcons with a 3-2 win Saturday night at Milford Ice Pavilion.
This is the second two-game sweep of the Falcons by the Pioneers, with the last one coming January 2-3, 2010. It's the first series sweep of the season for Sacred Heart, who moves into a tie for seventh place with Air Force in the Atlantic Hockey standings. The Pioneers are unbeaten in their last six games with a record of 3-0-3.
Just like Friday night, Air Force (11-17-3, 10-10-2 AHC) scored first. Johnny Hrabovsky scored a power play goal at 7:42 of the first period, with assists from A.J. Reid and Tyler Ledford. Sixteen seconds later, Sacred Heart tied the game 1-1. Erlich Doerksen (Toronto, Ont.) started the play with a pass to Drew George (Regina, Sask.) who put a shot on goal. Falcons goaltender Chris Truehl stopped George's shot, but Justin Danforth (Oshawa, Ont.) was there for the rebound and the tying goal. The Pioneers outshot Air Force 14-10 in the first period, but took the 1-1 tie into intermission.
Sacred Heart (9-15-6, 8-10-6 AHC) took the lead 4:10 into the second period. With the Pioneers shorthanded, Evan Jasper (Whitby, Ont.) started a breakaway into the Air Force end. He fired a shot wide of the net, but Doherty was there on the far post to knock the puck in and give Sacred Heart the 2-1 lead. Air Force tied the game 2-2 at 9:57, once again on the power play. Alex Halloran fired a laser from the blueline from Reid that found the net.
Air Force nearly took the lead early in the third period. Chad Demers almost had a goal trickle over the goal line two minutes into the third, but the Sacred Heart defense saved the day by clearing the puck out of danger. The Falcons' Scott Holm had two point blank chances stopped by Alex Vazzano (Trumbull, Conn.) with 12:30 to play in the game. The Pioneers took the lead for good with 6:41 remaining. Jordan Minello (Sweaburg, Ont.) had a breakaway chance go wide of the goal and off the glass. Waiting by the goal, Kennedy knocked the puck out of mid-air and in the net to make the score 3-2. Sacred Heart then hung on for the win, stopping two shots in the final seconds from Air Force.
Sacred Heart outshot Air Force 35-28 for the game, and 13-8 in the third period. The Falcons were 2-for-7 on the power play, while the Pioneers were 0-for-4 with the man advantage. Vazzano made 26 saves for the win. Truehl had 32 for Air Force.
The Pioneers are back in action on Friday, Feb. 13 at Bentley at 7:05 p.m.