Ice hockey tops Bryant 6-5 in overtime nail-biter

Tyger Allen, Herald Reporter

FALL RIVER, Mass. — On Friday night, Dec. 1, the men’s club ice hockey team defeated the Bryant Bulldogs 6-5 at Driscoll Arena. This marked their first time of the season taking on their in-state rival. The previous season, the Hawks met the Bulldogs in the same arena and won by a score of 5-2.

The Hawks came into this game off a strong two games against Westfield State University. In the first game of their back-to-back series, the Hawks won by a score of 8-2 at Driscoll Arena. The next game was played a day later in Westfield, Massachusetts. The Hawks continued their momentum and put up eight goals again, but this time shut out the Owls for the weekend sweep.

Early in the first, the Hawks got on the board first because of a goaltender miscue by Bryant’s Carl LaRosa. As the Hawks tried to play off this momentum, Bryant quickly tied the game back up on a power-play goal by Joe Bourque.

A hot Roger Williams offense found themselves with multiple chances early in the game. Senior Jonathan Panarelli gave a saucer pass to Scott Taylor in front of the net, but the pass did not connect as it hopped over Taylor’s stick. Just a few minutes later, junior Jeremy Lawton had a dish to Griffin Gagne, but LaRosa denied him with a pad stop.

Bryant took a 2-1 lead with another goal by Bourque, this time on the low blocker side of starting goaltender Ryan Shea. A diving defenseman for Bryant stopped a point-blank shot attempt on another chance from the Hawks, keeping the Bulldogs in the lead. Following that defensive effort, Bryant’s goaltender almost gave in another goal off a miscue, but was able to close his glove on the puck that laid motionless on the ice.

Bryant put the Hawks in a hole after they scored their third goal of the game on a shot from Alec Borkowski from Bourque with 4:27 left in the first. The Hawks tried to fire back, but LaRosa stopped Cole Foster’s point-blank shot.

The Hawks went on the power-play just one minute into the second period and capitalized on a shot from Christian Brinkley that went over the goaltender’s glove-side shoulder and in. The Hawks earned another power-play on a hooking call and soon scored on a Sean Stewart shot from the point.

The game would be back and forth from this point on as the game was tied up at 3-3. Bryant pulled ahead with 3:30 left, but Roger Williams’ Alex Abad closed the gap a few minutes later.

To start the third, the Hawks found themselves on another power-play and capitalized again when Nicholas Hart stuffed in a rebound on the right side of the net. Bryant would not let the Hawks pull away as they scored on a 3-on-2 rush.

With a tie score, the game went into overtime. The Hawks drew a penalty late in the third and began the extra period with an extra skater. Just 34 seconds in, Hawks forward Jeremy Lawton took the puck from behind the goal line to the front and chipped it over the goalie’s glove for the game winner.

“We definitely didn’t play our best hockey in the first, but we came back and played better in the second, then had to grid it out in the third,” said defenseman Jay Cobleigh. “We found a way to pull out a [win] so that’s kind of all that matters.”