PROVIDENCE, R.I. — Junior Paul Esdale scored two goals and added an assist, while sophomore Yann Danis stopped 26 shots in leading Brown (6-8-2) a stunning 4-1 win over No. 2 St. Cloud (19-4-1) on Friday evening at Meehan Auditorium.
After a scoreless first period which consisted of just 11 total shots on net, the Bears broke open the game midway through the second period, exploding for three goals in a span of eight minutes.
Junior Keith Kirley started the spree when he one-timed the puck into the left side of the net for his third goal in two games. The power-play goal was scored at 10:46 of the second and was assisted by Esdale and sophomore Shane Mudryk.
Less than five minutes later, Brown increased its lead to two goals when freshman Les Haggett intercepted a St. Cloud clearing attempt and found classmate Chris Swon. Swon sent the puck home from between the faceoff circles for his first career goal.
With the Bears on the penalty kill just three minutes later, Esdale put an exclamation point on Brown’s evening, scoring his first of the night at 18:46. Junior Tye Korbl broke up a St. Cloud play and found Esdale streaking down the left side of the ice.
Esdale lit the lamp — his first shorthanded goal of the season — with a slapshot from the left point, sending Brown into the locker room leading 3-0 and sending starting St. Cloud goaltender Jake Moreland to the showers in favor of Dean Weasler.
The Bears greeted Weasler rudely. Just two minutes into the final stanza, Esdale added a power-play goal for Brown, which finished 2-6 on the power play while holding the potent SCSU power play scoreless.
Kirley and Mudryk both earned assists on the goal, each finishing with two points.
With Danis just minutes away from his first career shutout, Mark Hartigan scored the Huskies’ lone goal of the night with 1:35 remaining.
With the win, Brown avenged last season’s two losses to the Huskies, 4-2 and 5-4 in Minnesota, while head coach Roger Grillo earned his first victory over St. Cloud, also Brown’s first victory over the Huskies in five tries.
Danis made 26 saves in net, earning his third victory of the year. Moreland stopped 11 shots while giving up three goals in two periods of action for St. Cloud, while Weasler made eight saves and allowed one goal in the third.
The Bears host UConn while the Huskies play Providence Saturday.