Pioneers Rally in Third Period for a 4-2 Win over UConn

Pioneers Rally in Third Period for a 4-2 Win over UConn

HARTFORD, Conn.—The Sacred Heart men's ice hockey team scored four unanswered goals on its way to a 4-2 comeback victory over UConn on Saturday afternoon at the XL Center. The Pioneers (5-7-2 3-5 AHC) recorded its fourth straight win over the Huskies (4-6-5, 2-3-1 HE) and its second win against the Hockey East this season, after beating Merrimack 2-1 on October 9. 

The Huskies got on the board first with a shorthanded goal by Conor Ronan 2:46 into the first period on the Pioneers' power play opportunity. UConn's second goal came at 12:20 in the first period as Tage Thompson followed the rebound from his initial shot off the face off into the slot and fired past sophomore goaltender Brett Magnus for the 2-0 lead. Senior Jordan Minello continued his strong play over from Tuesday night as he picked up the rebound on a shot by Justin Danforth and rifled it in to bring the score to 2-1. The Pioneers continued their rally into the third period as it was Minello once again with the goal on the one timer from senior captain Mitch Nylen to tie it at 2-2. Minello has recorded back-to-back two goal performances. Sacred Heart broke the tie at 8:14 in the third, as freshman Austin McIlmurray chipped in the puck past UConn goaltender Rob Nichols on the feed from sophomore Mike Crocock. Danforth then added a power play goal on the lead pass from Evan Jasper at 12:34 to seal the victory at 4-2. 

The Huskies outshot the Pioneers 34-32 on the day. Magnus picked up 32 saves in goal for the Pioneers with 28 saves coming in the final two periods to hold the UConn attack. Rob Nichols recorded 28 saves for the Huskies. Sacred Heart went 1-6 on the power play and held UConn to 0-5 on the man advantage.

The Pioneers will travel to Robert Morris for an Atlantic Hockey weekend series, starting Friday December 2 at 7:05pm.

First Period

- Ronan picked up the shorthanded goal for the Huskies at 2:46 in the first

- Magnus made a big diving stop on a shot by Thompson six minutes into the game

- Thompson got his own miss and fired it past Magnus for the score at 12:20 in the first

- UConn poked away a three on one breakaway power play chance for the Pioneers to end the first period

Second Period

- Minello's shot on five on three is saved by Nichols in the first minutes of the period

- Magnus with the stop on a laser by El-Mir with 18 minutes to go

- Jasper tried to deke past the UConn defender on a one-on-one opportunity but Nichols is there for the stop with 13:29 to play in the second period

- Minello followed up the shot by Danforth at 8:52 in the second to bring the score to 2-1 

- Magnus made two big stops on the power play with 5:44 remaining in the second period 

Third Period

- Nylen with the one timer to a wide open Minello to tie it at 2-2 at 5:05 in the third

- McIlmurray gave SHU the lead at 8:14, as he poked in the puck past the scrum in front of the net

- Danforth with the power play goal on the lead pass from Jasper at 12:34 in the third

- Maxim Letunov is denied by Magnus on the wrap around shot in the final minute to close out the game

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