No. 7 RIT Spoils “Senior Day,” Tops Saints 15-5
Apr. 28: In a battle of nationally-ranked teams with a home playoff game on the line, No. 7 RIT sprinted out to a 7-0 halftime lead en route to a 15-5 victory over No. 17 St. Lawrence University on Saturday in Canton, NY. A.J. Tingle led the Tigers with a five-goal game, while goaltender Anthony DeLeo turned in a solid 11-save performance.
St. Lawrence falls to 12-2 overall and finishes the league schedule at 4-2, which will land them the No. 3 seed in the conference tournament and a date with Union College in Schenectady, NY next Friday, May 4. Meanwhile, RIT improves to the same record of 12-2, clinches a share of the regular season crown and will be the top seed in this year's tournament.
"I thought RIT played an excellent game and we just dug too deep of a hole in the first half," said St. Lawrence head coach Mike Mahoney. "We will learn from this and we look forward to the opportunity to play next weekend in the conference tournament."
The visitors put together a fantastic first half, including a 19-10 advantage in shots, to take firm control of the game. The Tigers also finished with a 35-16 edge in ground balls, which proved to be a key statistic as the Saints failed to control much of the possession throughout the contest.
Both DeLeo and St. Lawrence goalie Jeff Goeke were sharp from the outset, as they kept the game scoreless until RIT broke through with 6:25 left in the first when Tom Riley made it 1-0. After Tingle made it 2-0 only 1:07 later, Tyler Russell scored in the final minute of the stanza to make it 3-0 after one.
The troubles continued for the Scarlet and Brown in the second quarter, as Brendan MacDonald scored back-to-back goals for RIT before Allister Warren made it 6-0 with 3:16 to go. Tingle then scored with only 6.7 seconds left in the half to deliver a dagger heading into intermission.
Tingle continued his strong play a mere :09 seconds into the second half, as PJ Hart won the faceoff and found his teammate for an 8-0 lead. Though Tucker Garfield, Matt Pope and Dave Hovey would score for the Saints in the third quarter, RIT responded with goals following each tally to build an 11-3 lead heading to the fourth quarter.
RIT would keep its offense rolling in the final period, reeling off four straight goals in a span of 5:11 to take a 15-3 lead. Warren, Taylor Wisman, Riley and MacDonald capped the Tigers' scoring, while Marcus Emerson and Garrett Gagne would score for the Saints in the final 2:42 of regulation to bring the game to its final of 15-5.
The Tigers finished with a 33-28 lead in shots, while both teams were 11-of-22 on face-offs. RIT was 1-for-2 on man-up tries and scored a man down goal, while the Saints were 0-for-3 on man-up. The visitors' defense did an excellent job in bottling up the St. Lawrence attack, including solid efforts from both Eric Horeth and Ellitt Cowburn, who combined for five caused turnovers and six ground balls.
Jake Wynn closed with three caused turnovers to lead the home team, while Brian Wilber added two caused turnovers and a ground ball on the defensive end. Goeke finished with five saves for St. Lawrence, while Jack Nuland (2) and Matt Ruscio (1) also made saves in the second half.
Saturday's game was the last regular season home game for 10 members of the St. Lawrence class of 2012, including Drake Paul, Matt Ruscio, Steve Cargill, Kyle Jacobsen, Craig Leach, Peter Carpenter, Eric Newman, Matt Pope, Mick MacLaverty and Matt Parker.