HENRIETTA, N.Y. (WROC) — Fairport native Spencer Bell scored four goals to lead the No. 3 Tigers to a 16-14 win over St. John Fisher, Wednesday.
Senior attack Luke Pilcher scored four goals and had two assists, while Fairport alum TJ Hendricks had two goals and two assists for the two-time defending national champions.
Bell scored nine seconds into the game off an assist from junior defenseman Michael Grace to give the Tigers the lead.
Pilcher scored two straight to give the Tigers a 3-1 lead, while senior Ethan Stiles was credited with a goal after a Cardinals’ defender scored into his own net on a clearing attempt to give RIT a 4-1 lead.
St. John Fisher’s Timmy Salit scored inside the final minute of the quarter to the RIT lead to 4-3.
Pal-Mac grad Jacob Galina scored his third goal of the half with 11:09 remaining that capped off a three-goal run by the Cardinals and give them a 6-4 lead.
Hendricks scored off a feed from Pilcher with 5:46 to play to make it 6-5. The Cardinals scored two straight to extend their lead to 8-5 with 2:45 to play in the half, but Pilcher and Grace scored in the closing minutes of the half to cut the Fisher lead to 8-7 at the break.
Bell and junior midfielder Kaden Brunson each scored early in the third quarter to give RIT a 9-8 lead.
Ethan Kesselring capped off a four-goal run by St. John Fisher with 9:13 to play in the quarter to give the Cardinals a 12-9 lead.
Pittsford native John Mozrall and junior Seth Grottenthaler scored back-to-back goals for RIT late in the third quarter to cut the deficit to 12-11.
Bell tallied two straight goals to begin the fourth quarter, giving the Tigers a 13-12 lead on his goal off an assist from senior Dylan Bruno with 12:42 remaining.
Griffin Dautrich scored for the Cardinals to tie the score at 13-13, but sophomore Sam Bennett scored off a pass from junior Michael Finneran to give the Tigers a 14-13 lead.
Kesselring scored with 9:54 remaining to tie the score at 14-14.
Pilcher scored to give the Tigers a 15-14 lead, and Hendricks scored with 5:21 remaining to make it a two-goal lead for the Tigers. RIT’s defense came up with some big stops in the closing minutes to secure the 16-14 win.
RIT junior goalie Kyle Burbank made six saves to earn the win.
The win is RIT’s 12th straight over the Cardinals. Each of the last three games in the series has been decided by two or fewer goals.
The Tigers (7-1) lost their 18-game winning streak and number-one ranking when they lost 15-11 to second-ranked Christopher Newport on March 17th. RIT will travel to Poughkeepsie to take on Vassar on Saturday, March 25th.
St. John Fisher (0-5) will look for their first win of the season on Saturday when they travel to Amherst College. The Cardinals have lost four games this season to ranked opponents by four or fewer goals.