Falcons get revenge on RMU; even series at one



Photo credit: Katey Ladika

Michael Sciulli

Coming off of their 3-1 win against Bentley Friday night, the Robert Morris men’s hockey team took a 1-0 lead in the best of three series against the Falcons. With Bentley on the brink of elimination from the AHC tournament the Falcons needed a win to force a game three on Sunday.

Fortunately for the Falcons, they would be able to pick up a 4-3 victory and extend their season another day. Bentley was able to comeback from behind twice in order to draw the series even with the Colonials. Coach David Schooley thought that the team played well through the first two periods of the game, and he mentioned that team played with energy throughout the game, generating plenty of chances, but said the team just needed another goal.

The first period of play continued the high-paced play of the final minute of game one as the Colonials were able to get on the scoreboard just under two minutes into the game. Luke Lynch and the Colonials were able to capitalize on an early power play to take the first lead of the game. The sophomore’s 15th goal of the season was setup by Alex Tonge and Timmy Moore.

However, the Falcons would fight back in the first as Charlie Marchand deflect the puck past RMU goaltender Francis Marotte halfway through the period to draw the two teams even. Then with about 30 seconds remaining in the first, Bentley was able to capitalize on an RMU defensive zone turnover to take the lead for the Falcons. Both Marotte and Coach Schooley were visibly upset as the Colonials went to the locker room trailing the Falcons 2-1.

Luckily for RMU the second period of play would be more friendly as the Colonials would score twice to regain the lead. The first of RMU’s two goals came midway through the period as sophomore Daniel Mantenuto sent the puck towards the cage and it ended up bouncing through the open five-hole of Falcons’ goalie Aidan Pelino.

The game would remain nodded up at two-a-piece for about four minutes, and then lightning struck again for the Colonials. Off of a faceoff win for RMU, Matthew Graham received the puck and then sent a spinning shot towards Pelino’s goal. Miraculously, the puck somehow found its way to the twine and just like that, Graham’s quick strike put RMU in the lead heading into the intermission.

Unfortunately for RMU, the third period was not as kind to the Colonials. Bentley quickly jumped out two a lead after two quick power play goals. The first came just one minute into the period by freshman Luke Santerno. Santerno was set up by juniors Tanner Jago and Alexey Solovyev. Jago and Santerno teamed up yet again on another power play goal just over a minute later by senior Kyle Schmidt. This goal gave the Falcons a 4-3, but there was plenty of time left for the Colonials to comeback.

The comeback would never happen though as the Colonials could not stay out of the penalty box in the third period. They entered the period on the penalty kill and then went on to commit four penalties in the period alone, in addition to the three penalties RMU committed in the second period of play. Coach Schooley and the fans were visibly upset with the officiating.

Although the Colonials were punished several times, Coach Schooley felt that the penalty killing unit was good for RMU. Captain Alex Bontje was satisfied that the team had some secondary scoring, but thinks that heading into tomorrow the team needs to the team needs to turn the page. Schooley also mentioned that the team needs to “flush” this game out of their memories and focus on tomorrow nights contest. A game that will decide which of the two teams advances to the quarterfinals of the AHC tournament.