ROCHESTER, NY ? Adam Mitchell (Crofton, MD) scored his first collegiate goal with 1:19 left in overtime to give the RIT men?s hockey team (1-4-1, 1-0-0 Atlantic Hockey Association) its first win of the 2010-11 season, 3-2 over previously unbeaten Robert Morris (4-1-0, 3-1-0 Atlantic Hockey Association) before a sellout crowd at Ritter Arena on Friday evening.
Mitchell picked up a loose puck after an Adam Hartley (West Vancouver, British Columbia) clear in the neutral zone after a face-off in the RIT end, and sprinted past a pair of Robert Morris defensemen. With the puck bouncing and the defenders in hot pursuit, Mitchell was nearly caught, as the defenseman poked the puck, but it went through the legs of Robert Morris goaltender Brooks Ostergard for the winning goal, which sent the capacity crowd of 2,100 fans into a frenzy.
RIT goaltender Shane Madolora (Salinas, CA) was outstanding in net for RIT, stopping 34 shots to earn the game?s first star. He made a tremendous save on Trevor Lewis with 1:30 left in regulation, holding the right post, while the Robert Morris forward dried a deke and stuff in attempt from in tight. Madolora made several big saves throughout the game.
Nick Chiavetta and Nathan Longpre scored for Robert Morris, who had won four straight games to start the season. Longpre tied the game at 2 with 10:09 left in regulation on the power-play, as he took a feed from Denny Urban in the slot, calmly waited out a Tiger defenseman and ripped a shot over the right shoulder of Madolora for his fourth goal of the year.
RIT Head Coach Wayne Wilson was happy to get the win, but knows his team needs to continue improving.
?We?re still a work in progress, but it is good to finally get a positive result, that can get everyone?s confidence back,? said Wilson. ?I thought Shane (Madolora) played a very good game tonight.?
Nolan Descoteaux (Dallas, TX) and Mike Janda (Glen Ellyn, IL) also scored for the Tigers. Hartley added two assists. Descoteaux?s goal was the first of his collegiate career.
Robert Morris out-shot RIT, 36-28. The Tigers were held scoreless in three attempts with the man-advantage, while Robert Morris scored once in three power-play attempts.
Both teams scored once in a very fast paced first period of play, with Robert Morris holding a 14-8 edge in shots.
The Colonials came out and took the play to RIT immediately, jumping out to a 10-2 shot advantage just eight minutes in. The Tigers had a golden opportunity early on, as Sean Murphy (Owatonna, MN) had what looked to be a wide open net from the right face-off circle, but Ostergard came across to make a big save and keep the game scoreless.
The Colonials got on the board first, at 11:24 of the opening period, as Chiavetta converted a rebound in tight past Madolora, who made two initial saves on Furman South. The puck was chipped to the center of the Tigers zone, where South leapt, caught the puck in stride and backhanded a shot that Madolora stopped. South had another chance that was stopped, but the rebound dropped in the crease and Chiavetta was there to convert.
RIT awoke over the second half of the period, and tied the game at the 13:15 mark, as Descoteaux ripped a one-timer from the top of the left circle on the rush past a surprised Ostergard for his first collegiate goal. Hartley fired a pass to #Cameron Burt at the Robert Morris blue-line. Descoteaux came striking in and took the feed from Burt and ripped the shot over the glove of Ostergard.
Janda tallied the only goal of the second period, at the 13:42 mark, as his wrist shot from the top of the right circle snuck past Ostergard and slowly slid just over the goal line, as the Colonials defense tried frantically to keep the puck out, but could not. Taylor McReynolds (Sherwood Park, Alberta) and Mark Cornacchia (Unionville, Ontario) assisted on the goal, Janda?s second of the year.
Both goalies made some big saves in the frame to keep it a low scoring affair. Madolora made a brilliant sliding save to rob Adam Brace on a breakaway, while Ostergard stood his ground to deny Ben Lynch (Blaine, MN) on a breakaway of his own late in the period.
Robert Morris held a 22-21 edge in shots after 40 minutes, with RIT out-shooting the Colonials, 12-7 in the second period.
RIT had two brilliant chances to make it 3-1 early in the third period, but could not convert, as Lynch was denied in tight, then Tyler Brenner (Linwood, Ontario) misfired on a 2-on-1.
The Tigers were 15-2-0 at Ritter Arena last season and are 50-13-3 at home since the start of the 2006-07 season.
?We?re not used to losing at home, and we wanted to make sure that didn?t happen tonight," said Wilson.
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