RIT Wins Again In Bentley

The RIT men's hockey team (14-8-2, 11-4-2 AHA) earned its fourth straight road victory, holding off Bentley University (7-11-5, 7-5-4 AHA) 2-1 on Saturday night at the John A. Ryan Skating Center.  RIT goaltender Shane Madolora (Salinas, CA) had his school record shutout streak of 211:01 snapped, but made 36 saves on the evening to lead the Tigers to the victory, one point shy of first place Mercyhurst in the Atlantic Hockey Association standings.

Bentley took the play to RIT in the final period, firing 14 shots to just six for the Tigers.  The Falcons had a great opportunity to tie the game up midway through the third period, with Alex Grieve firing two shots at Madolora from point-blank range.  Madolora was up to the challenge, but sent the second rebound out to Brett Switzer before making a sprawling save across the crease.

Madolora then came up huge in the final minute of regulation, when a shot caromed off the back glass right to a player in front, but the RIT goaltender stood firm, making a shoulder save. RIT was able to clear the puck out of harms way and pick up the win.

Brad McGowan (Langley, British Columbia/Walnut Grove) and Scott Knowles (Riverside, Ontario) scored in the latter stages of the second period for the Tigers.

RIT was 0-for-5 on the power play while Bentley was 1-for-8.  Bentley out-shot RIT, 37-28.

Bentley took a 1-0 lead early in the second period, when Brett Gensler sent a pass to Grieve who skated in on Madolora for the goal.

Later in the period, Greg Noyes (Lucan, Ontario) skated through the Falcon defense but was denied by Komm on the doorstop.  The rebound deflected to Matt Garbowsky (St. George, Ontario/St. John's Collegiate) who was also robbed by Komm.

RIT's first goal came with under six minutes to play in the second, when a strange bounce found its way to the stick of McGowan who hit the top of the net.

The RIT penalty kill was outstanding at the end of the second period.  With under a minute to play, Eliot Raibl (Vancouver, British Columbia) sent an outlet pass to Knowles who skated in on a breakaway, and deked Komm for the eventual game-winner.

RIT's best chance came five minutes into the opening period when Adam Hartley (West Vancouver, British Columbia) fired in a shot from close range.  Komm made a tremendous save, trapping the puck in his right shoulder pad.

The Tigers penalty killing unit was strong all evening, as the collaborative effort of Taylor McReynolds (Sherwood Park, Alberta) and Garbowsky, among several forwards kept the pressure on the Falcons and held Bentley in check. Knowles, Smith, and Brad Reid (Delta, British Columbia/South Delta), and Cameron Burt (Detroit, MI) were part of a strong group of penalty killing forwards for RIT.

With two minutes to play in the period, Brett Switzer fired in a shot from the point.  Madolora made the save but couldn't control the rebound, as it appeared to be heading straight for the stick of Zach Marginsky, before a diving effort by Jeff Smith (Spokane, WA) sent the puck to the boards.

The Tigers are now 13-4-2 all-time against the Falcons and are 11-3-2 since joining the AHA for the 2006-07 season.  

This is the first time since the 2008-09 season that the Tigers have won four straight road games (they won five straight from Dec. 6 to Jan. 25, 2009) and is the first time at the Division I level that they swept back-to-back weekend series on the road.  Since the 2008-09 season the Tigers are 20-3-4 on the road in conference games after January 1.

The Tigers return home to play Mercyhurst in a battle of the top two teams in league play on Friday and Saturday at Ritter Arena. Both games start at 7:05 p.m.  It is RIT's first home games since Dec. 10.  The Tigers were 6-3 on its nine-game road swing.

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